Carbide End Mills Overview in Detail
An end mill is a milling cutter that is used to shape and cut through a variety of materials; the materials range from wood and plastic to steel. What distinguishes end mills from drill bits is the fact that the former is used to cut only sideways while the latter can cut in the downward direction.
Solid carbide end mills are a class of end mills that use their side cutting flute edges to machine materials. They are extensively used to fight edge wear when machining materials such as brass, aluminium and phenolics, to name a few.
Buying Carbide End Mills- Things You Need to Know
If you are looking to buy carbide end mills for your machining requirements, here are a few things you need to know before you shell out your money:-
Machining Material Considerations
Understand the material that you are looking to the machine using the end mill. The machining of 1018 carbon steel and D2 tool steel cannot be performed using the same approach since the two vary distinctly in their machining qualities.
Harder materials usually require end mills with more flutes so as to make lighter cuts. When dealing with low-silicon aluminium, relatively high speeds and feeds are a must to prevent the chips from evacuating the mill flutes. The helix angle of an end mill also has an important role to play. The angle can be accommodated to attain the required shearing angle for machining materials of varying densities.
The coating of the carbide end mills also has a role to play. You must choose end mills with coatings that are resistant to increased temperatures and wear and tear. Titanium nitride, titanium carbon nitride and titanium aluminium nitride are the three of the most extensively used end mill coatings.
End mills coated in titanium nitride provide better lubrication; titanium carbon nitride is preferred for use with high-speed steel end mills, and titanium aluminum nitride end mills are chosen in applications where heat dissipation is imperatively required.
Knowing how your end mill would function can help you shape your buying decision. The slotting operation can be done best by employing an end mill having two or three flutes – as a general rule, lesser the number of flutes on the end mill, deeper the cut that can be carved on the workpiece.
Applications that require periphery cuts or side milling operations, a number of end mills having at least four teeth can be put to use for performing the removal of metal. You can choose the exact number of teeth required for the job depending on the radial and axial depth of the cut.
It is always best to choose quality over price. Quality carbide end mills would last long and save you from any maintenance issues in the long run. You can turn to brands such as Totem, YG1, Cobra, Rohit Tools, Widia and RS Pro, to name just a few, for all your milling requirements.