When Good Gets Better: Cutting Tools Industry Snapshot

In their search to reduce production cycle times, lower tooling costs and achieve higher precision machining of new materials, shops are demanding new cutting tool solutions that meet higher machining parameters, more process complexity, exotic alloys and a variety of other challenges. Here are some of the newest cutting tools that meet these needs.

In their search to reduce production cycle times, lower tooling costs and achieve higher precision machining of new materials, shops are demanding new cutting tool solutions that meet higher machining parameters, more process complexity, exotic alloys and a variety of other challenges. Here are some of the newest cutting tools that meet these needs.

MACHINING AEROSPACE MATERIALS
Seco Tools (Troy, MI) offers several advanced tooling solutions for the efficient and precise milling and turning of difficult-to-machine aerospace materials used in manufacturing engine components, landing gear or airframe structures from superalloys, titanium alloys, steels, aluminum or composites (see Figure 1).

High Feed 2 Milling Tools offer high feed rates, small depths of cut, and handle a wide variety of pocketing, ramping, helical interpolation, facing, contouring, slotting and plunging applications. The line includes a comprehensive range of PVD and CVD insert grades for hard steels up to 62 HRc and a wide variety of chip groove and flat geometries to tackle several different types of materials, including superalloys.

Jabro JHP770 and JHP780 End Mills are solid carbide end mills that offer high metal removal rates with secure, chatter-free machining in roughing applications. The JHP770 is ideal for machining in titanium, while the JHP780 focuses on heat-resistant superalloys. JHP770 features differential flute spacing to avoid vibrations, polished Siron-A coating for increased tool life, optimized edge preparation, radial relief, special formed chip space and an internal central coolant channel. JHP780 features differential flute spacing to avoid vibrations, a polished Mega 64 coating to increase tool life and a double core for added machining stability (see Figure 2).


Two new geometries are added to the HPM product family for high performance machining. Both JH770 and JH780 offer a high metal removal rate with secured and chatter free machining. The JHP770 is designed for machining in titanium while the JHP780 is focusing on heat resistant superalloys typically found in aerospace components.

As the first polycrystalline cubic boron nitride (PCBN) grade specifically designed for finish turning in nickel-based superalloys, the Secomax CBN170 incorporates a unique whisker ceramic binder technology that enhances tool life and reduces insert indexes. Ideal for turning in hardened steels, the CBN010 is a new uncoated PCBN grade that has a highly uniform microstructure with a high resistance to edge chipping that is mainly intended for finishing operations and is available in solid, full face, tipped and multitipped insert formats, all of which include several wiper options (see Figure 3).

The TH1000 and TH1500 grades are ideal for turning hard materials. TH1000 utilizes a TiSiN-TiAIN nanolayer PVD coating to enhance its edge toughness and provide supreme surface finishes. The combination of properties in TH1000 makes it ideal for turning steels with a hardness between 40 and 62 HRc (see Figure 4).

ME geometries make it possible for the Double Octomill™ face milling cutter to cut freer in tough materials such as titanium, superalloys and Inconel. These geometries do not include T-lands and only their edges are honed.

Seco Tools, 2805 Bellingham Drive, Troy, MI 48083, 248−528−5444, lseidl@secotools.com, www.secotools.com/us.

Niagara Cutter, LLC (Amherst, NY) offers a wide variety of new and highly advanced cutting tool solutions that bring increased tool life, enhanced productivity, improved surface finish and optimized chip evacuation to aircraft part production.

Designed for high-speed milling operations in titanium and other challenging materials, the new seven-flute S738/S738R and nine-flute S938/S938R solid carbide cutters allow aerospace and defense manufacturers to machine precision parts at higher feed rates. The unequal flute spacing on these cutters reduces vibrations for improved surface finish. The cutters come standard with aerospace corner radii and AlTiN coating. The seven-flute cutters are available in diameters that range from 0.25 in to 0.5 in, while the nine-flute designs are between 0.625 in and 1 in diameter (see Figures 5–6).

Two new solutions add to the VFP series of multi-flute, variable face cutters made from an M42 cobalt substrate: the latest four-flute VFP435SB and six-flute VFP635SB bring optimal performance to rough machining operations that involve stainless steel or titanium and require substantial metal removal rates. They also feature a cutter geometry that provides optimal chip formation and evacuation in difficult operations. However, while the existing products in the line only allow up to a .156 in corner radius, the new cutters allow for a larger .250 in corner radius through quick modification. VFP cutters are available in diameters that range from 0.75 in to 2 in, with multiple lengths of cut based on the diameter. Both the four-flute and six-flute designs are stocked standard with a 45 deg corner chamfer.

Niagara Cutter, LLC, 200 John James Audubon Parkway, Suite 202 Amherst, NY 14228, 716−689−8400, Fax: 716−689−8485, niacut@niagaracutter.com, www.niagaracutter.com.

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