1/1/2010 | 3 MINUTE READ

Tooling Topic

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From grooving to honing, here are some new tools that you ought to be aware of for better production.


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Groove Tool

Interested in doing some serious grooving for O-rings, retainers, circle clips, and the like? Check out the ISCAR CHAMSLIT grooving cutters from Iscar (iscarusa.com). They're said to provide more insert density—50% more than the competition—which results in faster cutting. What's more, tests reveal that another advantage of high insert density is that if there is failure of one edge, the tool keeps working safely. And taking economic considerations into account, the TRI inserts deployed have 3X as many edges per insert, thereby providing reduced insert investments.

Because the insert—made of IC 908 carbide—is slightly tilted in its pocket, and because there is a low-profile design to the cutter, it is possible to machine close to the bottom of a groove, slot or cavity.

The tool comes in a diameter range of 32.2 to 80 mm and can cut grooves 4.8-mm deep. Each cutter accommodates inserts ranging from 1.2 to 4.01 mm. Through-tool coolant holes direct coolant to the cutting edge.

And in addition to the aforementioned circular cuts, the tool can handle square, round and chamfer grooves, and threaded profiles.


Cool Tool

The name is somewhat self-explanatory: Jetstream Tooling. This system from Seco Tools (secotools.com/us) provides better chip control and increases in tool life, cutting speed, and feedrates, whether the coolant is being run at 70 psi or 5,000 psi, whether the machining is being done on titanium alloys or aluminum. According to studies that have been performed on machining with the coolant being deployed at from 200 to 5,000 psi, cycle time reductions of up to 50% and tool life increases of 75% can be achieved.

What happens is that because the coolant is applied at high pressure close to the cutting edge, the work area is cooled and small, hard brittle chips are generated, which are then broken and lifted by the coolant action. Because the reduced contact length of the chip on the rake face, crater wear is prevented and surface finish improved.

Heretofore there has been a standard line of Jetstream tooling available; now Seco is offering custom tooling including semi-standard modular cartridges and toolholders that are particularly designed for heavy-duty machining applications.


Mighty Mills

Although you may not run into a whole lot of titanium alloys, the HXF and HXF-RN end mills from Helical Solutions (1helical.com) can handle them, as well as more likely-to-be-encountered materials like cast irons and steels. These finishing end mills are designed with multiple flutes so that when used with the appropriate radial chip thinning techniques, not only is there increased metal removal rates, but the tool is said to be upped, as well. They are designed for small radial depths of cut up to 6% of cutter diameter and axial depths up to 1.5x the cutter diameter. They are available in diameters from ¼- to 1-in. diameters and from 7 to 14 flutes, depending on diameter.

The tools are made with a premium sub-micron grade carbide and are available with AlTiN coasting.

The "RN" tools have a reduced neck and stub flutes, a combination that allows extended reach without sacrificing tool rigidity.


Flexible Face Mill

Nowadays you may not know whether you're going to be running high-volumes or small batches. Consequently, the CoroMill 345 from Sandvik Coromant (sandvik.coromant.com) can be an ideal tool for high-performance face milling operations. In addition to its breadth of production operation capability, this tool is also designed so that it can perform tasks ranging from roughing to mirror finishing (with wiper inserts).

It works on a range of machining equipment, from low- to high-powered, from machining centers to multitask machines, from ISO 30 to ISO 50 machines.

This 45° face mill is equipped with double-sided inserts with four edges on each side to help productivity. When small depths of cut are used, a positive axial inclination means there is low axial pressure. When depths become larger, a more upright part of the edge comes into play, thereby providing the insert with the strength needed for the tougher cuts.


Precise Honing

Need to achieve precise tolerances in finishing bores? Check out the Precision Hone (PH) tooling system from Sunnen Products (sunnen.com), which can handle bore diameters from 57 to 300 mm.

The PH tools are available as metal-bond superabrasives (CBN or diamond), conventional abrasive (aluminum oxide/silicon carbide), or as an abrasive-impregnated filament plateau brush.

What's key to the performance of the system is that there is integral air gaging that facilitates in-process bore sizing to tolerances of 0.005 mm.

The PH tool can be used with Sunnen honing machines, as well as those of other manufacturers. 

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