Monday, September 27, 2021

Are TiAlN Coated End Mills Superior?

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Milling machines have become an essential part of modern manufacturing. Not only can these computer guided cutting tools manufacture custom components at incredible speeds, but they are also capable of performing very fine and accurate work. Because milling cutters operate at high speeds, it is crucial that your end mills are designed to handle high speeds and feeds. TiAlN coated end mills are specifically designed to handle the heat and the increased friction that comes with running your cutting tools at high speeds.

The strain on end mills is enormous. Not only are they spinning at high speeds, but the cutting edges of the tools are impacting the workpiece at a rate of several times per second. These constant impact forces can have a huge impact on the lifespan of your cutting tools. Especially under high heat applications, the edges of a cutting tool can soften and become damaged, severely limiting the tool life of your milling cuttings. This is especially true when milling into harder ferrous materials like cast iron and stainless steel.

Not all end mills are created equal. Some tools, like those made from carbide, are a great option for handling high speed jobs. Sadly, even carbide tools will fatigue over time. Adding a protective coating to any milling cutter will help to enhance its performance.

Titanium aluminum nitride TiAlN coatings are designed to give your end mills the ability to handle high temperatures better than untreated tools. Tool coatings like TiAlN are applied using a technique known as physical vapor deposition. The end mills are placed in a vacuum chamber and the coating material is turned into a vapor. When this vapor is resolidified, it even coats the entire surface of the chamber, including all of the tools within.

Because the tools are coated in a vacuum, the coating material bonds directly to the surface of the end mills, creating an incredibly thin layer of TiAlN that is incredibly secure. This also means that the final surface finishes on these tools are even within built up edges so you don’t have to worry about the tools having less effective cutting points.

One of the biggest advantages of using TiAlN coated end mills is the fact that TiAlN has a lower coefficient of friction than unprotected steel and carbide end mills. This means that your tools will be able to easily eject chips, which can be especially valuable when machining aluminum alloys. The coefficient of friction between tool and workpiece also determines how much heat is generated during the machining process. TiAlN is also incredibly hard, which will provide extra protection for your tools.

In addition to helping your tools create less heat, TiAlN also helps to insulate your cutting tools. Under high heat, the TiAlN coating will naturally create a layer of aluminum oxide on the surface of your tools. This layer will help to insulate your tools from heat by deflecting the heat created by cuts into the chips instead of the body of the end mill. This extra layer of protection can greatly increase the lifespan of your cutting tools, especially well operating your cutters at high speeds.

When it comes to buying TiAlN coated end mills for your shop, it is important to deal with reliable manufacturers. Online Carbide is an American tool manufacturer specializing in solid carbide end mills and drill bits. They offer a great selection of tools coated in TiAlN and other protective coatings. You can see their full inventory of milling cutters by visiting their online shop at www.onlinecarbide.com.

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