Pan Roof Heavy Duty Lift Assistor

August 12, 2020

Background

The size and complexity of sunroof options on modern high-end vehicles has grown over recent years and now include full length glass, tilt & slide opening, powered sunshades etc.

These units are usually supplied by specialist manufacturers off-site and are fitted to the vehicle in a highly-sensitive bonding process.

The Technical Challenge

Manufacturers are acutely aware of the damage a leaky roof can cause and, on luxury vehicles, the bonding process will included robot laser alignment and monitoring of the temperature of the adhesive, among many other things.

This automated process is a critical phase in the final assembly of the vehicle and 100% reliant on the robot cell functioning; the robot stops, the line stops.

In order to protect production continuity, the manufacturer must have a back up plan and this is where the Pan Roof Andron Heavy Duty Lift Assistor comes in.

The Andron Solution

The Pan Roof Heavy Duty Lift Assistor enables a single operator to drive and dock with the gluing cell where the roof has its adhesive applied. Lifting clear, the operator transfers to the production line and up and over the top of the waiting vehicle.

Guided into position through locator datums in the vehicle, the Pan Roof Heavy Duty Lift Assistor provides perfect alignment of roof to vehicle and then presses down with exact forces in exact locations for an exact duration to achieve a perfect adhesive spread; critical to achieve a leak-free bond.

This process maintains critical production throughput to enable the line to continue running.

In another operational configuration, the Pan Roof Heavy Duty Lift Assistor provides another vital role for the plant. Should any of the highly controlled robot process have failed over a batch of vehicles, the vehicles are brought back to the station in an off-line loop. The Pan Roof Heavy Duty Lift Assistor is then used to remove and re-apply a new roof with on-line levels of quality and accuracy.

In order to achieve the very large area coverage with a very high dead-weight load (the pushdown forces were required to be derived from dead mass) Andron opted for a triple down-shop and double bridge gantry system and our heavy-weigh mast assist. These units can provide up to 1000kg and are commonly used for handling of heavy and complicated assembly jigs. The system is driven in x,y and z and is configurable for a number of different products.