Chillers - Keep Your Spindle Cool


Heat is the number one enemy of machine tools.

Since the spindle is a prime source of heat in any machine, precautions must be taken to minimize any adverse affects. A cool spindle will last longer, provide more power, and greater precision.

Motorized spindles are prone to heat related disturbances since the motor is directly connected to the spindle shaft, which is in direct contact with the cutting tool. As the heat from the motor travels down the shaft, thermal growth can alter the spindle dimensions and affect cutting tool precision. Excess heat can also shorten the expected life of spindle bearings, seals, and other internal components. For these reasons it is easy to see why keeping a spindle cool is vital to long-term productivity and efficiency.

Liquid Chillers

Use of an industrial chiller is an excellent option for removing excess heat in a machine tool spindle. Liquid chillers operate in much the same way as an automobiles radiator. Cool liquid (water, glycol, etc.) is circulated from the chiller unit through insulated lines to a cooling jacket surrounding the spindle's rotor where heat is the greatest. This heated coolant then flows back to the chiller unit where it is chilled and circulated back to the spindle again. These units are ideal for motorized spindles with high horsepower ratings.

While the initial capital investment can be somewhat higher for liquid chiller systems, over time, the lower operating costs and extended spindle lifetime can equal lower total cost of ownership. For those customers with multiple spindles in one location, a single chiller unit can often supply the cooling needs for several spindles simultaneously.

Air Vortex Generators

Another option for spindle cooling involves the use of compressed air as the cooling medium. In this method, shop air is blown through a specially designed vortex tube and onto the spindle itself. While adequate, this method does not provide the advanced thermal protection of liquid systems. Vortex generators are traditionally effective only on motorized spindles with 3 HP or less.

While the upfront costs can be less, the cost of providing clean, moisture free shop air in large enough quantities to supply a vortex tube can add up over time.

When it comes to keeping your spindle cool, Dynomax has you covered. Whether you need a liquid chiller, or a vortex air tube, our knowledgeable representatives can assist. Contact us today! (this ph is a footer to spindle cooling systems, not part of air vortex)