Unsupported energy chain for Kao Ming's large machining centre

Machine tool manufacturer uses a guidelok system for signal and energy supply

Large machining centre gantries are the speciality of machine tool builder Kao Ming in Taiwan. The long travel lengths of up to 13 metres provide challenging requirements for the supply of energy and media. By choosing the guidelok from igus, Kao Ming decided in favour of a system that is reliable, robust and operates without support.


  • What was needed: The guidelok system, E4.80 energy chain, chainflex cables
  • Requirements: High number of cables and hoses that have to be guided, and long travels
  • Industry: Machine tool manufacturing
  • Success for the customer: Fast and low-vibration energy and signal supply for best processing results of the machine, simple design reduces maintenance requirements, greatly reduced  machine downtimes and maintenance intervals
Other products for machine tools
Gantry machining centre KMC-G The gantry machining centre KMC-G is designed for workpieces from the aviation and machine tool industry.


Kao Ming, based in Feng Yuan City, Taiwan, is a pioneer in Asia in the development and manufacture of heavy-duty robotic milling machines. The company places the highest demands on the quality of its products. Thus, great importance is also attached to an extremely strong basic construction of the machines. This is also the case with the KMC-G machine series, which is one of the company's largest gantry machining centres and is mainly used for machining workpieces in the aerospace and machine tool industries. Box guideways on the machine's travel axes ensure maximum rigidity and dampening.  The first G-series plants had a travel distance of six metres in the X-axis and the current model series now has a travel of 13 metres.
For a customer with additional requirements, an individual machine design was necessary on the part of the manufacturer. The end customer wanted the possibility of machining in different working angles and not only in the horizontal direction. For this purpose, this plant is equipped with a changing device for the machining tool so that milling heads with different machining angles can be used.  The different axes increase the number of cables and hoses that are needed for energy, media and data and that have to be dynamically guided from the central control cabinet through the plant to the milling unit. The special modular design also increases the demands on the energy chain, since the travels are longer.


This special construction posed a special challenge to every energy and signal supply system. For these requirements, the customer Kao Ming opted for a guidelok system from igus, which ultimately proved to be the ideal solution for the application. The special design of the supporting rollers ensures that the upper run of the used E4.80 chain can move smoothly and quickly. Moreover, the design allows the option to have two opposite chains move within the same trough system. Thanks to this design of the guidelok system, the e-chain can move quickly and, above all, with little vibration. This has a positive effect on the processing result.
However, the simple design also has the advantage that regular maintenance can be dispensed with. Overall, machine downtimes and maintenance intervals are reduced as swarf is unable to settle between the upper and lower run. The guidelok travel distance can even extend to 50 metres long.
After installing the entire system, Kao Ming is very satisfied today. So they decided to also equip the second plant for the same end customer with the guidelok system from igus.

energy chain The long travel on the X axis and the number of cables and hoses place special demands on the energy chain.
energy chain The pivoting roller holders allow the chain to run freely while supporting the upper run.
Machining centre The machining centre is equipped with a changing device for the milling tool.
KMC-G machine with energy chain Impressive dimensions: the X-axis of the KMC-G travels over 13 metres.