Friday, April 14, 2017

5-Axis Favorites

I’ve had the pleasure of working with Jim Hillman at PrecisionMN, on several REVO projects for his customers over the last several months. Jim and I share a strong interest in the REVO 5-axis capabilities, and the projects he has brought to our team really define why the REVO is such a capable inspection tool.

For example: during one offline programming demo, we were able to cut down cycle time from nearly 1hr per part on a traditional CMM, to around 10 minutes on the REVO. This kind of cycle time improvement is immense when considering the purchase of a CMM and projects like these are always a fun challenge for our team. It’s always rewarding to hear the excitement (and disbelief!) regarding the power of the REVO system from customers and future customer alike.  

For anyone that doesn’t know, PrecisionMN is one of our sales rep partners here in North America. Here’s an email interview with him for our Wenzel Partner Spotlight Blog.

How long have you been associated with Wenzel?  2 Years
What products do identify with the most (What do you like to sell)?  5 Axis CMMs and CT systems

What things make your partnership successful with Wenzel? Quality products, Manufacturer support, Comprehensive Product offering
What territory do you cover?  Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, and North and South Dakota
How many people currently work at your company? 30
What other products / Services do you offer?  Starrett Vision systems, Optical Comparators, Force Testing Machines, Hand tools, Hard Gaging, Calibration and Repair and inspection services
What is your outlook for the 2017 business environment? Optimistic that the reduction of Federal Regulations will stimulate growth in Manufacturing
What three words describe your company/brand?  Service, Support and Sales

Jim Hillman
Cell.      (763) 732-8328
Office. (763) 784-1704
9150 Isanti St. NE
Blaine, MN 55449
Repair - Calibration - Sales - Service

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Stuart Nichols
Wenzel America
Applications Manager

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Sales Superhero!

There are many things to worry about as a sales manager. The easiest way to make things run smoothly is having a good sales representative that believes in your products. I am fortunate that my sales representative from Ohio Gage works very hard to promote Wenzel.

mike army.jpgMike Bingham owner of Ohio Gage has been a Wenzel partner since 2001. In those 16 years Mike has steadily expanded the types of products he has expertise in.

Ohio Gage now represents new and used CMM’s, computed tomography systems and gear inspection machines in Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia and Pennsylvania.

Ohio Gage was hired by Wenzel to sell retrofits using a Wenzel controller and OpenDmis software. With Mike’s typical get it done attitude, he put a small retrofitted Cordax CMM in the back of his van and drove all over the Midwest. His first year he sold 100 retrofits, catapulting him to a spot at the annual Wenzel sales meeting in Germany.

Mike hobby.jpgWhen I asked Mike what he like to sell most he replied, “everything.” He continued, “Every customer big or small is the same regardless of the product they are looking to purchase. The quality business is built on relationships and reputation, not price and sales numbers.”

For 2017, Mike expects sales growth in aerospace and gear inspection. The growth in aerospace will be driven by the new accuracy specs of Wenzel’s LH brand CMM that will start at sub-micron. For gear metrology, the new application support and service team dedicated to Wenzel’s gear customers will offer a direct path for service and custom projects.

Ohio Gage has been successful because of three things.

    mike race car.jpg
  • The first is quality. Mike said, “You can’t stand behind a product unless it has superior quality and Wenzel products are the best in the world!”
  • The second is reliability. Mike continued, “The customer deserves respect, that’s why your products need to be reliable, but that’s not all. Your sales process can never fail and you, the salesperson, must above all else be reliable. The customer is relying on you to help them make a very large purchase. You can never break that trust.”
  • The third reason for Ohio Gage's success is value. “You must provide the customer a product that is a long-term investment that has a low cost of ownership. Wenzel products are stable over time and require little maintenance. The software SMA costs are some of the lowest in the industry, and Wenzel offers these benefits over a wide product range.” Mike said.

I want to thank Ohio Gage for their enthusiasm toward Wenzel, and for all the effort Mike puts into his sales process. He truly sees all customers as equals in a family, A Wenzel Family.

mike sales.jpg

Scott Romain
Regional Sales Manager Midwest

Servicio Excelente de Metrología

As any successful company knows, the best way to take care of your customers is by having the quintessential support. For Wenzel America, we really do mean all of America, where we’ve partnered with Borbolla Metrology: our extended metrology family south of the border.
Borbolla Metrology had its beginnings practically as they were partnering with Wenzel America (back then, Xspect Solutions) in 2003 and was founded by brothers Luis and Jorge Borbolla. They are now a team of 11 applications engineers, salesmen, and servicemen, some covering multiple of these roles!
Even though the alliance was struck in ’03, Borbolla’s reputation precedes them having started their services back in 1997 repairing industrial equipment quickly coming across a CMM without even knowing what it did! The rest, as they say, is history.
As a family-owned company, like Wenzel, Borbolla Metrology stands for everything Wenzel advocates, like providing a personal level of service and dedication. Jorge believes that what makes their partnership successful with Wenzel is the “trust between each other, striving to provide services well, and identifying niches in the market where both can be successful.”
Not only do they represent the whole gamut of Wenzel products but they also support optical comparators from ST Industries, fixture systems from Witte, portable CMMs from NDI, new technologies as well such as laser and white light scanners, and, of course, the trusted and reliable Renishaw line of products. They support all products that they represent from sales, installation, training, and aftermarket services.
Furthermore, they support the calibration of masters as well as the verification equipment. The results from Borbolla Metrology will be dependable since they are accredited under ISO 17025 by the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA). Best of all, they’ll do all of this in either English or Spanish!
If you’re just getting started in the world of metrology, you can also check out some of Borbolla’s used machine inventory or inquire about retrofitting your current CMM with new Renishaw or Wenzel controllers with Wenzel’s OpenDMIS, Quartis, and Pointmaster softwares. Don’t worry, Borbolla metrologists are also familiar with Polyworks, Geomagic, PowerInspect, DirectInspect, G Measure, and even older CMM software going back to Sheffield’s MeasureMax and OFI and Quadra-chek’s QC3000.
If you’re not taken yet with Borbolla Metrology, just look at the companies that have put their trust in their services - Alcoa, Bosch, Caterpillar, Cummins, Daimler, DANA, Delphi, Eaton, Emerson, Federal Mogul, FEMSA, GE, GM, Gulftream, HELLA, HBPO, Honeywell, INTEVA, John Deere, Kautex, Kaydon, Whirlpool, Linamar, Magna, Mahle, Messier, METALSA, Mitsubishi, Nemak, SAFRAN, STRATTEC, Takata, TRW, Tupy, Valeo,  Volkswagen, and then some! Chances are, if you work with metrological equipment south of Texas, you’ve probably already heard of Borbolla Metrology or have worked with them already.
They currently cover all of Mexico, although they have provided services in other Central American countries like Costa Rica and Panamá, operating from one of their four offices in Queretaro, Chihuahua, Mexico City, or Saltillo (in the state of Coahuila) where they have a full-service demonstration center
Even with my relatively short tenure at Wenzel, I’ve had the pleasure and fortune of working with both Borbolla brothers individually and it is clear why they make such a great team that supports a very dedicated company.

I spent time with Jorge both at IMTS, where he supported the Wenzel line of products, as well as in Germany for our annual sales meeting which brings together the Wenzel family to showcase our new products and to meet even more Wenzel partners. In both accounts, I found Jorge to be a charismatic, supportive, and devoted partner to Wenzel.
I also had the pleasure of working closely with Luis in Monterrey, Mexico, near the Borbolla’s hometown of Querétaro. Throughout the week, I saw more and more similarities between Luis and I! We are both very technically oriented, data driven metrologists that like chasing microns. However, Luis’ experiences extends mine and his perseverance, knowledge base, and level of support is admired by everyone who’s spoken to me about Luis.
As far as their favorite part about metrology, they say “there’s always something new to learn, be it the technology [they] sell or the people with which [they] interact.” It gives them the opportunity “to know the many processes in the industry, since metrology is everywhere from automotive, appliances, plastics, energy production, oil, etc. You never stop learning!”

As far as the outlook of 2017 and the future, “I know our industry is always susceptible to economic and global markets but we believe that we’ve established our brand in the market and we have confidence that our customers and suppliers will still depend on our high level of products and services,” says Jorge.
If you’d like to know more about Borbolla’s services or have any questions about their products, don’t hesitate to contact them at + (54)1-800-777-6433 or

Mariano Marks
Product Specialist – Gear Metrology
ASME GD&T Technologist Certified

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

One gear to rule them all

Good news, everyone: gear inspection just got easier! This has to do with the implementation of the Gear Data Exchange format, and you don’t need your GED to use GDE. The GDE format has been developed since 2003 and is described most recently in the relatively short VDI/VDE 2610 standard.

The purpose of GDE is to have a universal format that describes all geometric parameters for cylindrical gears which can then be easily transferred between design, manufacturing, and quality departments. The format is based on Extensible Markup Language (XML) Version 1.0 which is easily able to be implemented to already existing database applications. In a sense, it can be thought of being the DMIS for gears.

Imagine a recipe where, across the world, anyone can decipher what the meal is supposed to look like at the end no matter if you grow the food, package the food, or cook the food. This same advantage will make it possible for gear data to be easily transferred and interpreted faster and with less mistakes no matter what software, machine, or controller you’re using. This is because GDE eliminates errors and unnecessary delays such as entering data manually incorrectly from a part print whose resolution is low from the way it was sent electronically.

Now, GDE has come to your favorite software: TGear! TGear is not only able to read in .xml files but it can also output your programs into .xml files as well. The .xml files themselves are so well structured and organized with ASCII text that even novice users can identify mistakes easily.

To give you an idea of the simplicity of a GDE file, the main sections are “Identification”, “Geometry”, and “Inspection”. These sections are, of course, broken down into further subsections as needed in order to completely describe all pertinent gear parameters. Further information can be input in a “User” section as well if necessary. VDI regularly updates “complete” structure files (.dtd) files which you can think of as empty GDE files that can be used as the basis to create your own GDE files as you see fit to describe your gear. You can download the latest files here and you can open  them in the simplest of text editors like ‘Notepad’.

If you would like more information about GDE, a sample file, and to see how it is implemented in our gear software, please don’t hesitate to contact me at or check out our website here. Happy measuring!

Mariano Marks

Monday, March 13, 2017

What’s New Pussycat? Whoa, Whoa Whoa!

Every year the Wenzel sales staff from around the world descend on Wiesthal, Germany for a week of training and product introductions. With 2016 being my first time to the sale conference and I was floored by the new technologies I was introduced too. 

What technologies you may ask? Well, it’s top secret, but it will be released at the 31st annual Control Show this May 9-12 in Stuttgart. Wenzel will be in hall 5 at booth 5102 and we hope to see you there!  What I can give you now is a review of our current offerings and what they are best used for so you can appreciate the changes when they come. 

LH Generation CMM

The LH CMM is Wenzel’s flagship CMM hand builtd in Germany. It has high accuracy, smooth drives and thick granite. This system is perfect for scanning or measuring precision parts large or small. The LH has the widest range of sizes from a shop floor 5.6.4 to a very large 15.60.12. It also has the most options when it comes to probing. An SP80 or PH10M with an SP25 are great options although but the REVO is its specialty. 


CORE is an optical CMM system with 5 or 6 axes that is typically 5 times faster than a tactile measuring machine. The CORE is ideal for turbine blade inspection, medical implant measurement, or any other parts with polished surfaces and sharp edges. This machine is shop-hardened and has a small footprint. 

The CORE machine can measure blades and other parts from 1” to 80” tall and, unlike other non-contact systems, it can be calibrated to ISO 10360 just like a CMM. The CORE uses a high intensity spot of light to measure parts instead of a traditional tactile probe.  It is very fast, accurate, repeatable, and reliable.


The XO CMM gives customers a lower cost option to the LH CMM that features the accuracy and quality that customers have come to expect from Wenzel. These CMM’s have granite bearing ways and work best with a PH20 or PH10. Choose an XO to measure machined components, stampings or tooling with the precision of a 2.5micron system. 

exaCT Computed Tomography System

The exaCT Computed Tomography machine uses x-rays to produce three-dimensional representations of the scanned object both externally and internally. This opens a whole new world of metrology including assemblies, porosity, internal dimensions, and non-destructive testing. 

It is important to note that the exaCT is more than a lab device. It is a metrology grade device manufactured by a metrology company. This means the software is easy to use, provides powerful dimensioning tools, and correlates with your CMM. Did I mention they fit on a desk?

What do I like?
What I like is simple… Everything! I know it sounds cheesy but I am proud of the equipment I represent and I am excited for the future of our product lines. Do you make basic parts or are you on a budget? Then choose (or “go for”) an XO. If you make defense/aerospace parts, a LH is perfect. If your turbine blades and blisks need quick measurements, then the CORE is the solution! Do you want the fastest and most robust CMM in the world? The LH with a 500mm/sec scanning REVO head is the answer. No matter what your measurement task, chances are we have a solution. You just need to ask.

If you would like more information regarding Wenzel, please call 248-295-4300 and ask for a sales person. You will be directed to your personal representative. 

Scott Romain
Regional Sales Manager Midwest

Are We There Yet?

Development. A concept crucial to the success of individuals and companies alike. Personal development is something we should all be striving for as we go through life. 

Schooling, training, job opportunities, travel, the list goes on and on. As a company that is committed to the future, Wenzel has teams all over the globe whose sole purpose is cutting edge product development. 

As you may know by now, we have recently released new versions for both of our Metrology software, OpenDMIS 6.5 and Quartis R15. 

Both these releases have added important new functionality, and robustness to the previously available products. One of the crucial benefits to you, the customer, when considering a company like Wenzel - is our ability and willingness to listen to customer feedback and apply it to our software. 

One example of our short development chain involves a customer who had experienced a problem scanning parts with a PH-6 (which isn’t typically used in scanning applications) due to limited software function and support for that specific probe type. 

With a few emails to the development team, we were able to ensure that full PH-6 support was included in the next software release - only taking a few short months to complete. 

Occasionally we are able to provide patch updates (depending on software and issue) even quicker. This kind of ability to affect change for our customers is generally unheard of in the industry. 

The development cycle, while unique to each software, has been designed with the customer and their requirements in mind. So what are some of the improvements?

An update for both software is the increased support and compatibility for very large CAD files using an optional 64 bit version of the software. 

The Quartis R15 CAD Interface has also been updated to support:

- Inventor (V11 to 2017) 
- Parasolid (10 to 29)
- Solid Edge (18 to ST9)
- SolidWorks (2003 to 2016) - 2015 and higher only available in Metrosoft QUARTIS (64-Bit)

The update to Quartis R15 has added support for peripherals  such as  the FARO arm, a CNC rotary table, and the Renishaw PH10-iQ, as well as a unified ribbon interface for the construction of elements - even giving a live preview in the graphics area. 

For the exhaustive  list of updates to R15, visit -

OpenDMIS 6.5 has added some enhancements such as  Point Cloud Inspection (written about here by Patrick L. additional support for Dual Arm machines, many productivity enhancements (DRF tolerancing, Euler angles, feature/datuming tools, and debugging tools) and the capability for Group Point Measurement.

Group Point Measurement, is a unique function that allows for a more efficient communication between the Software and Controller. Points can be processed in large batches, rather than individually, which can dramatically decrease cycle time. 

Group Point Measurement can be applied  to 2 or more points, can be used with 5-axis measurement on REVO, or PH20 and supports all program search functions. For more  information, or a copy of the  OpenDMIS 6.5 release notes. 

Go to to “Ask a Question” or contact us directly.

Stuart Nichols
Applications Manager

Thursday, February 16, 2017

The Revolution will be ...

The future is on my mind. In my past life, it never seemed to be *that* worth focusing on or planning for. Working in Aerospace, our tagline was “it’s late 80’s tech”, while in the quality dept of a machine shop, there was only concern for the parts in front of us, and even in my personal life “it’ll work out” or “whatever happens, happens” were often the prevalent thoughts. 

All changed when I joined Wenzel America last September. Suddenly, “the Future” was driven to the forefront of my mind by working with cutting edge technology, and passionate people. 

The Future is demanding much more attention - technology, training development, relationships, culture…. and even industry. 

The Fourth Industrial Revolution - The future of Industry or Industry 4.0 has been an unforeseen theme for me over the last 6 months and today, Wenzel America exhibited some of our own technologies at the Automation Alley “Technology Outlook” event at the Detroit Institute of Arts. 

Surrounded by beautiful artwork, some of it centuries old, “the Future” (and how it affects them) was on everyone’s mind. 

The event featured a great networking session, and ended with a Technology Industry Report and an open panel discussion on Industry 4.0 with companies at the forefront of the revolution. 

The benefits of using ‘Big Data’, supply chain streamlining, circular economy effects, and (somewhat surprisingly) the immense struggle to find enough qualified people to fill the employment need, were all things that were discussed at length. “But why should I care about all of this” asked one of the students in attendance, which prompted the room to laughter. I don’t think the student saw the irony in the question…. 

At lunch, Drew (Current President of Wenzel America) asked the familiar question “Why do we walk out of our social life, into our work life…. And leave the technology behind?”. Once again, I didn’t have an answer. We live in a social environment that is overwhelmingly interconnected. Information crosses multiple websites for marketing, Facebook listens to conversations, apps left and right are communicating and sharing to grow your “network” and improve your connections. 

Data matters when WE are the product, shouldn’t it matter when we manufacture products too? What if your oven told you when the element is close to burning out? Or your CNC Mill knew that the machine tools needed to be replaced? Or your CMM not only told you that your drive belts need replacing…. But actually ordered them for you? That’s the Revolution. 

The Wenzel Group is fully committed to an Industry 4.0 future and bringing new and innovative metrology solutions to support the manufacturing world. For our part here at Wenzel America, we will continue our dedication to providing flexible and innovative metrology solutions and assisting (or facilitating) the implementation of automation and other Industry 4.0 needs. 

We are also striving to grow awareness and exposure of manufacturing, here in Southeast Michigan, and across the USA through several different projects, and involvement with organizations such as Automation Alley.

The launch of our Instagram/Blog customer feature, offers a window into the huge breadth and great capabilities of manufacturers here in America, and offers a chance for their story to be told and shared with people who otherwise may not even be aware they exist. 

Manufacturing Day 2016 provided us an opportunity to inspire the next generation of workers, and demonstrate an industry that many of them didn’t even know existed! It was a great event, and we will be looking forward to providing similar opportunities throughout 2017.

For the customer feature visit: 
and look for our quarterly blog posts.

To be featured contact

Click on the link for our MFGDay16 review. 

I’m excited about our future, and I hope you are too.

Stuart Nichols
Applications Manager 

For those of you that may not have heard about Industry 4.0 here’s an excerpt from Automation Alley’s Tom Kelly.
“Industry 4.0 is the marriage of the physical world and the digital world. It’s a concept that got its start in Germany, and it’s now becoming part of the manufacturing conversation around the world, but so far it’s been slow to catch on in the U.S. In this new era of making things, sensors at every step of the manufacturing process provide manufacturers with real-world data. This can be used to create models and run simulations in the digital world, allowing for continuous improvement, significant cost savings and a myriad of other benefits. In an Industry 4.0 factory, or “smart factory,” machines, devices, sensors and people are all interconnected and can communicate with each other. Digital systems work both autonomously and in collaboration with humans.”