Computer simulation of rotary forging
This thesis presents two computer packages to simulate the rotary forging process, by means of a mathematical model. The results are displayed in a graphical and numerical manner, showing the tool movement and the tool / workpiece interaction. The first package, PATH, is shown to be capable of simulating the motions of all known rotary forging systems. Its results show the rotary forging tool path throughout a chosen process. The motions of any rotary forging system can be programed by a simple set of instructions displayed on the screen, and the results displayed quickly and graphically. The widely used motions of rocking - die rotary forging machines were investigated. From these investigations, formulae were put forward, which were shown to be capable of predicting the tool motion of any rocking - die rotary forging situation. The second package, PROFS, presents a meshed representation of the tools and workpieces used in rotary forging systems. The rotary forging tool is represented as a conic wire frame mesh, on which no forces or loads are considered to act. The workpiece is represented as a cylinder constructed from a number of hexahedral elements. The elements are treated in either a non - constant volume or a constant volume manner. The non - constant volume model workpiece is one which is simply cut away by the action of the tool on it. This model is similar to a process of 'rotary cutting'. Using the model, a technique of investigation into the progression of the contact geometries created during a real rotary forging, was developed. It enabled the progression and size of the contact geometry to be followed from start to finish of the forging cycle. No consideration of the loads or forces occurring during the process was taken into account. The constant model workpiece requires that its volume remains fixed during the simulation. This is achieved by a radial expansion of the elements of the workpiece as it is being 'deformed' by the tool. Again no consideration of the loads or forces occurring in rotary forging was taken into account. Investigations, using the model, enabled the instantaneous contact geometries, contact areas, and displaced volumes of material to be predicted during two real rotary forging processes. Results revealed the potential of PROFS, to determine areas of workpiece instability in the early stages of forging, and reveal ares of insufficient die fill. The potential of data from the simulations, to control a rotary forging machine, is discussed, and is seen as the first step towards the design and manufacture of rotary forging parts and dies by a C.A.D. - C.A.M. route. Contact areas produced during the rotary forging process are essential for any calculations of the forces and stresses occurring in the die and workpiece. The possibility of PROFS to be used as a die / design tool and in pre production trials for new parts is discussed. A physical simulation of a non - constant volume model workpiece was carried out using a 'short lead milling' technique to cut away a solid workpiece. This revealed the instantaneous contact geometries and areas of the workpiece, which were shown to be accurately predicted by PROFS using the non - constant volume. The results confirmed the accuracy and validity of the simulated instantaneous geometries, allowing a large degree of confidence to be assumed in the accuracy of the package. A data base of radial, circumferential, and custom die profiles has been built up and incorporated into PROFS. From the data base a chosen profile can be used to generate a conic meshed representation of a rotary forging die. Investigations, using a die generated from a custom profile, revealed areas of possible workpiece instability. The two packages put forward in this thesis have been shown to be capable of simulating the motions and contact geometries of the rotary forging process, and confirmed using physical and real rotary forging comparisons.