Small turned parts: 6 good tips you will get from FRIMA
Small Turned Parts are nothing new for many machine shops. Industries like automotive, aerospace, electronics, firearms, and medical are pushing the envelope when it comes to small-part production. Typically, any application requiring a workpiece smaller than 1 in. dia. is considered small-part turning.
Micromachining, on the other hand, is classified by part diameters that are too small to be fixtured using a standard collet. In some instances, this could mean parts that are 0.1 in. to 0.02 in. dia. all the way down to the size of a human hair, depending on the equipment.
For shops looking to take on small-part turning operations, there are a number of things that can be done to ensure success.
1 . Tips for Small turned parts: Tooling
Turning small components requires a different style of tooling than large-part turning.
“Sharp molded and ground cutting tool inserts provide less tool pressure and freer cutting,” said Steve Easterday, Swiss applications engineer, Kyocera Precision Tools, Hendersonville, N.C. “Physical vapor deposition (PVD)-coated inserts provide excellent tool life and a sharper edge.”
With small components, tool pressure is a primary concern. Very small parts can easily deform during turning operations.
“Because of this, the process needs to be planned to minimize tool pressure using sharp, positive tools,” said Edwin Tonne, training and technical specialist, Horn USA Inc., Franklin, Tenn. “It’s important to look for well-defined cutting edges and a positive top rake. Fully sintered cutting tools can be problematic because they’re just not sharp enough to minimize the pressure. Look for finely ground-cutting edges with plenty of clearance. A sharp wedge angle will help prevent deformation in the part. Form tools are a good choice because they can simplify the process.”
Chip control and evacuation can be cumbersome in small-part turning. For the most part, the biggest tool possible is the better option, but it’s important to remember that there must be enough room, especially in boring operations, for chip evacuation. High-pressure coolant can be a huge help with this.
Looking for tooling that is purposely designed for small-part turning or micro-turning is a good place to start. These tools tend to have tighter tolerances and are more finely ground.
2. Tips for Small turned parts: Material Selection
The material you use for a CNC-turned part can drastically affect the overall design. For example, metals like aluminum and brass are soft and ductile, making them easy to machine. However, they also tend to be less strong and durable than harder materials like steel or titanium. In order to make the best possible choice, it is crucial to consider the application and desired properties of the part, as well as the specific capabilities of the CNC turning process.
The CNC machining material must be strong enough to withstand the forces of machining, but it also needs to be heat-resistant and wear-resistant. In addition, the material must be compatible with the coolant and lubricants that will be used during the machining process. Failure to select the right material can lead to part failure, costly repairs, and even injuries.
3. Tips for Small turned parts: Tolerance
In any CNC turning component design, certain hidden risks can always cause the part to be out of tolerance. The reasons for these risks can be many and varied, but often they can be traced back to the design of the part itself. In order to minimize the risk of problems occurring, it is essential that the designer gives due consideration to the issue of machining tolerance in their design.
If a dimension is too tight, it may be impossible to achieve the desired results. If a dimension is too loose, then the fit and function of the part may be compromised. As a result, it is essential to strike a balance between these two extremes. The best way to do this is to use tolerances that are appropriate for the application. For example, close tolerances are often used for precision components, while looser tolerances are more forgiving and can help to reduce costs.
4. Tips for Small turned parts: Surface Finish
When considering the design of a CNC Turned Part, surface finish is an important factor to consider. Achieving the desired surface finish can be a challenge, and the wrong choice of material or tooling can lead to poor results. A part with a poor surface finish can suffer from a number of problems, including increased friction, excessive wear, and diminished aesthetic appeal.
Conversely, a part with a high-quality surface finish will operate more smoothly and efficiently and will look more attractive. When selecting a surface finish for a CNC-turned part, it is important to consider the requirements of the application. For example, a rougher finish may be acceptable for an interior component that will not be seen, while a smoother finish may be necessary for a visible exterior component.
5. Tips for Small turned parts: Threading and Grooving
When designing a precision CNC-turned part, it is important to consider the process of threading and grooving. Threading provides a way to fasten two pieces together by interlocking them, while grooving allows for a smooth transition between two surfaces. When used in conjunction, these two features can help to create a more durable joint that can withstand higher loads.
In addition, these features can also be used to improve the aesthetic appeal of a part by hiding joints or creating interesting patterns. As a result, incorporating these features into the part design can help to improve the safety, durability, and performance of a product.
6. Tips for Small turned parts: Wall thickness
Wall thickness is another factor to consider when designing CNC-turned parts. If the wall thickness is too thin, the part may be weak and susceptible to breakage. However, if the wall thickness is too thick, the part may be overweight and difficult to handle.
The ideal wall thickness for a CNC-turned part will depend on the material used and the finished product’s desired strength. In general, however, a good rule of thumb is to keep walls as thin as possible while still maintaining strength and durability. By paying careful attention to wall thickness, engineers can ensure that parts are both strong and cost-effective.
Whys choose FRIMA Small Turned Parts
FRIMA – Your No. 1 supplier
FRIMA specializes in the manufacturing of small to medium size components. We have a wide range of machining capabilities and complementary services, providing our customers with turnkey solutions for their supply chain needs. We also have experience working with a variety of materials.
Without sacrificing quality or attention to detail, we are able to provide competitive prices and lead times. As the manufacturing market has become increasingly globalized, we remain competitive.
- We are experienced in processing supply chain-friendly orders such as; blanket orders, KanBan, and consignment orders. Our background includes the automotive, oil and gas, electrical, and medical industries. Additionally, our experience serving the fastener industry is extensive.
- We pride ourselves on our adaptability and are capable of providing an extensive range of machining services. Please contact us with your specific requirements and we will answer any questions and provide an accurate quote.
- We offer you a complete range of machining and metal processing from a single source. We would be pleased to invite you to visit us at our plants in Ningbo We are sure we will find many opportunities for cooperation together.
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