Tech Files for Brass?
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  1. #1
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    Default Tech Files for Brass?

    First things first, I'm totally green on an EDM. Picked up the manual to our new Agie CUT 350E last Friday and by the end of the day was able to cut out a 2D shape of my own design out of 20mm steel using the tech files that shipped with the machine.

    Now I have some parts that I need to make out of thin (1.5mm) brass but I'm running into a few problems:

    1. There isn't a brass-specific tech file on the machine already (I have steel, copper, aluminum, hard metals, and titanium)).
    2. There isn't tech information for any material under 10mm thick.
    3. When I try to get around these problems by stacking parts up to 10mm thick and using "copper" tech to run the cut, but the wire breaks after 10-15s of cutting. The part that cut before the wire broke looks OK.

    What would you guys do in my situation?
    Is there a better material to use for the tech than copper when cutting brass?
    How do you deal with cutting thin materials or developing a tech for them?
    Any chance anybody has compatible tech files for thin brass in a 350e?

    And one broader question: what parameters do you normally start tweaking when you adjust a tech file? There are so many that it's overwhelming vs. a conventional machining op like milling or turning.

    Here's some more detail around what I'm using:
    Agie CUT350e, under 10 hours on it and just installed by the factory tech two weeks ago
    Agie Brass wire, Ø0.25
    Workpiece is 360 brass
    I have good flushing, with upper/lower cones <0.2mm from the part


    Thanks in advance for any help!

  2. #2
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    Quick update here: managed to get it cutting brass by using parameter set for "hard metals" and stacking parts to a min thickness of 10mm, then telling the machine that my part is 20% thicker than it actually is.

    Still interested in any advice folks are willing to offer, especially about how to cut thin (0.5-3mm) parts.

    Thanks,
    Henry

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    I use skim settings for thin materials. iirc you need to create the tec file with multiple passes and call up the 502 or whatever in your command or iso file.

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    On our Robofil and CUT machines we use the settings for steel when cutting brass, per Charmilles.

    When cutting shim stock we always stack it and use stiffener plates top and bottom.

    When selecting material for stiffeners, always use a like material.

    Never use anything except aluminum stiffeners for thin aluminum parts.

    Use brass stiffeners for brass, copper, and becu shims.

    Steel and SS get along just fine when stacked.

    If $ is a concern, use steel. If rust is a problem go with ss.

    As for the parameters, I'm not sure how similar our machines are to the Agies but ...

    When we experience wire breakage like this we first look for obvious reasons.

    Failing to find those we reduce the frequency (FF).

    If it continues, we begin increasing the off time (B).

    Next would be a, slight, reduction in tension (WB).

    Then further reductions in frequency.

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    all good advice guys! as a general rule of thumb when cutting materials not covered by tec you start with steel for the simple reason that there is more tec for steel than any other material. so you will be able to match part thickness, wire type, wire diameter, finish, etc.
    regahding the settings, FF is P on this generator, there is no B because if you adjust the frequency you ARE adjusting the off time. the on time is Ton and it is generally maxed out on the mains. to prevent wire breaks drop the P. WB is FW now and it is in newtons 1 newton =~100grams so an FW of 17 is 1.7kg or 1700g. hope this helps

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    When cutting thin pieces I usually "cheat" by if possible sandwiching the piece I want to cut between two sacrificial pieces of still to artificially thicken it. I typically use a 1/2 thick piece of aluminum for both the top and the bottom. I cut ALOT of brass and I use the copper settings. Oh just on a side note. Brass plugs up the filter pretty fast!

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    Thanks to everybody for the help! I got the parts cut using the hard metal tec already on the machine, but that used a ton of wire due to the slow feed and I'm sure isn't the ideal parameter set. Stacking more parts, as mentioned by Nc_coder and KilrB, also helped a lot.

    I've got proper training coming up on this machine shortly and am excited to learn more about this cool tool!

  8. Likes Nc_coder liked this post

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