When you need to manufacture a component with threaded surfaces, the task can be difficult without the right tools. Threads have to be precise in order to function properly. When it comes to cutting threads on pipes or other components, CNC milling machines have helped to revolutionize the process. Now thread milling with solid carbide tools can produce perfect threads in a fraction of the time as other thread cutting methods.
The old fashioned method of cutting threads involved the use of tap and die tools depending on if the threads were internal or external. The tap and die process uses special cutters that trace along the threaded surface, cutting and breaking the chips as the threads are produced. This process has also been automated for mass production, but still has its faults. Mainly, it is still slow, requires separate tools for internal and external threads, and jams are possible if the chips are not properly broken and evacuated.
Thread milling addresses all of these issues with specially designed end mills. Thread milling tools are designed to machine both internal and external threads using the same tool, making them extremely versatile. They also operate at high speeds, which means that they can help speed up your production time when you are manufacturing components with threaded surfaces.
The fastest type of thread mill is a full form cutter. These tools have rows of cutting points that are spaced based on the pitch of the treads that the tool is designed to cut. Each cutter is designed to cut an entire threaded surface in a single 360 pass. The continuous threads are created by dropping the tool by the length of threads pitch, making the final cut helical. This means that you can cut several threaded surfaces extremely quickly as long as you have to only cut threads of a uniform pitch size.
If you need a more versatile thread cutting tool, then a single form cutter might be the perfect option. Instead of having rows of cutting points, a single pitch tool only has a single cutting point. This means that the tool has to trace along the entire length of a threaded surface in order to complete the cut. While this may take longer, it does have its advantages. Single point thread cutting tools can cut threads of different thread pitch spacing, making them ideal for mixed production. They also have a smaller cutting surface that can be used on more delicate surfaces such as overhangs and thin walled components.
When it comes to finding threading tools, you should always look for tools made from carbide. Thread milling with solid carbide cutting tools will always produce the most accurate results possible. This is because carbide is a composite material that combines the strength of metal and the rigidity of a ceramic. Tool carbide is nearly twice as hard and rigid as steel, making it ideal for performing fine, high speed machining tasks.
If you want to try thread milling with solid carbide cutting tools, then you need to make sure that you are getting your tools from a reliable source. Thread mills have a small cutting surface that needs to be precise. One US manufacturer known for their thread mills is Online Carbide. All of their end mills and drill bits are manufactured from high quality solid carbide stock and are designed to offer an excellent tool life. If you are interested in checking our their thread mills and other cutting tools, you can find them when you visit www.onlinecarbide.com.