Should You Purchase a 6 Axis Robotic Arm?


Many companies opt for the 6 axis robotic arm out of the various types offered. It appears that a lot of the applications these robotic arms are needed for are similar in most companies. However, every robot is best appropriate for some applications and not suited for others.

The Main Characteristic of 6 Axis Robots

When a company chooses a specific robotic arm, they have in mind the applications they need it for. The major characteristic of a 6 axis robotic arm is that it is built to reach any point within its area with no specifics on orientation.

It is therefore the perfect robot for tasks such as the following:

  • Opening and closing a drawer
  • Writing on a surface
  • Grabbing an object from a drawer
  • Getting a tool from the bottom and placing it back

Some 6 axis robots come complete with a learning mode to guide you in programming them by simply moving your hands. These particular robots come with encoders on all six axes that make it possible for them to know their exact positions.

Controlling a 6 Axis Robotic Arm

There are two ways to control the 6 axis robotic arm:

  • Use a pose target
  • For every axis, give the angle

The controls allow the robot to be precise. However, they are never obvious especially when the move you want to make is complex and requires a complex orientation. You must be prepared for a long and arduous task if you hope to find the points on your own.

Applications Necessary for a 6 Axis

You will not use your 6 axis robot for all cases. If the task at hand requires precision but the movement involved is complex, you are better off using a simpler robot.

When the 6 Axis May Need Assistance

If you are operating in an environment where you come across myriads of obstacles, you will encounter issues such as failure of motion planning because you cannot use mathematical solutions. The robots may fail to perform the expected tasks because the motion planning failed,

A 6 axis robot is designed to reach any place except when an obstacle is in the way. In this case it becomes quite difficult to reach where it needs to. In this case, you will need a different robotic arm; possibly a 7, 8 or 9 axis robotic arm.

The alternative arm will be able to go past the obstacle and reach the object that you are trying to reach. A 7 axis robot will in addition be useful for particular industrial tasks, for instance, welding.  This robot is needed only when your needs are pretty specific. Otherwise, you may not necessarily need it. However, it is never a bad idea to have one on the standby just in case.

When to Choose the 6 Axis Robotic Arm

Your application will dictate your choice, naturally. Here are some points to consider when considering buying the 6 axis robot:

  • What exact tasks do you need to be performed
  • Do you need objects to be picked from the bottom?
  • Do the objects need to be placed elsewhere before being placed?

If the answers to these questions are in the affirmative, then the 6 axis robotic arm is your best bet. It is best suited for:

  • Complex movements
  • Multiple tasks
  • Diverse tasks where reprogramming is required.


6 axis robotic arms may cost you a pretty penny but the return on investment (ROI) is worth it. When you are looking for technology that will not only help you grow your business but also ensure that your trade remains relevant in the long term, then investing in the best becomes a priority.

The most important thing is to be aware of the applications that you need your 6 axis robot for. Important points include: it helps improve speed and productivity, as well as providing a solution for shortage of skilled labour. Additionally, it saves you labour costs.