TCM tool development for milling model plastic
TCM's development department not only designs solid carbide end mills for metal machining, but also increasingly end mills in special designs for machining plastics and graphite.
A long-time tool management customer, has approached TCM with a special requirement. A millable model plastic was to be machined for the production of in-house components. The plastic is made of epoxy or polyurethane and has a chemically and mechanically consistent quality that is ideal for machining on CNC milling machines.
Although there are solid carbide end mills in some manufacturers' catalogs designed for milling this model block material, they were too small in diameter and too short in cutting edge length for the customer's posed application and part sizes.
To avoid unnecessary milling paths, TCM decided to adapt the tools to the customer's specific needs and manufacture these special tools in its own grinding store. The development data for the milling tool resulted as follows due to the material to be machined: A double-edged solid carbide milling cutter with a face radius and a center cutting edge was selected. The tool has a cylindrical shank and was clamped in a collet chuck with the highest precision to ensure the highest concentricity.
In the successful test, the cutter was able to achieve a tool life of 20 hours in continuous engagement! Due to the adapted geometry and extreme cutting edge sharpness, the tools run vibration-free and produce flawless finishing surfaces. With the face radius milling cutter, even 3D free-form surfaces can be produced and milled 5-axis simultaneously. For straight milling surfaces, a torus cutter with similar dimensions and small corner radii has also been produced.