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Engraving help.

Mountain co-op

Plastic
Joined
Feb 27, 2022
Needing help once again.

I am needing help with engraving settings on a Haas vf2..

We were using a 3/8 step drill for the longest. The problem is the tool life.. sucked. Mainly run carbon steel.. the main issue is stainless.

I switched out the tool to a 1/8 ball mill then to an 1/8 undercutting mill, mainly due to a quality of engraving improvement. The issue is, the bits are breaking. Needing some advice here.

Currently running anywhere between 13000-15000 rpm and varying intermittent speeds of 15-60 ipm in testing. Ideal speed would be 50-60 ipm on carbon and 20-30 ipm on ss..

Depth of cut is .02 into the plate.


Any suggestions on feeds and speeds? Or tooling?
 

mhajicek

Titanium
Joined
May 11, 2017
Location
Minneapolis, MN, USA
Use an engraving cutter for engraving:

Tipped Off

They have chipload recommendations. I just cut a bunch of Ti parts with a texture pattern using one of these at 50,000 RPM and 30 IPM. Probably could have fed faster.

Why would you use an undercutting endmill (I presume you're referring to a lollipop) for engraving? If you want a ball profile use a stub ball or a runner cutter:

Runner Cutters
 

Mountain co-op

Plastic
Joined
Feb 27, 2022
The main reason for using an undercut mill or a ball mill is to allow for a wider profile than a standard engraving bit. The standard engraving bit profile s so thin that by the time the galvanizing the process is finished, the customer will not be able to read the part engraving.

That is part of the reason why the width of the actual lettering is 1/8 in size.
 

memphisjed

Stainless
Joined
Jan 21, 2019
Location
Memphis
The main reason for using an undercut mill or a ball mill is to allow for a wider profile than a standard engraving bit. The standard engraving bit profile s so thin that by the time the galvanizing the process is finished, the customer will not be able to read the part engraving.

That is part of the reason why the width of the actual lettering is 1/8 in size.

for galvanizing you can use plasma "etch" - 100+ ipm.
 

tonymor

Aluminum
Joined
Feb 9, 2017
Location
Chambersburg PA USA
We do lots of live tool engraving on our lathes in mild steel that gets painted over.
Use 3/32" CARBIDE BALL END MILL 2 FLUTE 1800332 from lakeshore carbide.
Limited to 3000 RPM on some of lathes and feed at 300mm/min, 1/2 that for plunging. We have a 3-1 speeder on one machine and run 3 times those numbers.

Depth of the engraving probably has the biggest impact on tool life for us. Too deep and the cutter chokes up and breaks.
We program ours at .2mm depth. You may be wise to try doing yours in multiple passes or go for a bigger cutter.
 

mhajicek

Titanium
Joined
May 11, 2017
Location
Minneapolis, MN, USA
The main reason for using an undercut mill or a ball mill is to allow for a wider profile than a standard engraving bit. The standard engraving bit profile s so thin that by the time the galvanizing the process is finished, the customer will not be able to read the part engraving.

That is part of the reason why the width of the actual lettering is 1/8 in size.

I understand why one might want to use a ball endmill or runner cutter for a smooth, wide cut, but what benefit could there be to using an undercut mill? You're not undercutting, unless you're making a channel for inlay, in which case a dovetail would work better. Undercut endmills (I call them lollipop cutters) are very fragile due to the reduced stem diameter, and unless you're cutting more than 1 radius deep there's no difference in the cut profile as compared to a stub ball endmill. Unless you're engraving on the side, which completely changes the problem.
 

Micmac1

Aluminum
Joined
Jun 9, 2017
The main reason for using an undercut mill or a ball mill is to allow for a wider profile than a standard engraving bit. The standard engraving bit profile s so thin that by the time the galvanizing the process is finished, the customer will not be able to read the part engraving.

That is part of the reason why the width of the actual lettering is 1/8 in size.

Try using a tapered ball mill 1/8 dia tip, 1/4" shank 5° per side taper such as helical #84875. Shank is beefier, should allow for engraving at the depths you said.
 

Mountain co-op

Plastic
Joined
Feb 27, 2022
Try using a tapered ball mill 1/8 dia tip, 1/4" shank 5° per side taper such as helical #84875. Shank is beefier, should allow for engraving at the depths you said.

Would this tool allow for speedy engraving at .02 depth? That is the issue we are having now. Stuck at around 25-35 ipm and needing to be around 50-60+ ipm
 

Mountain co-op

Plastic
Joined
Feb 27, 2022
I understand why one might want to use a ball endmill or runner cutter for a smooth, wide cut, but what benefit could there be to using an undercut mill? You're not undercutting, unless you're making a channel for inlay, in which case a dovetail would work better. Undercut endmills (I call them lollipop cutters) are very fragile due to the reduced stem diameter, and unless you're cutting more than 1 radius deep there's no difference in the cut profile as compared to a stub ball endmill. Unless you're engraving on the side, which completely changes the problem.

The theory was, the undercutting mill would not endure as much stress on the overall tool at that depth. Issue was that the tool was gummed up when the actual part varied in thickness
 

Bval37

Plastic
Joined
Apr 13, 2022
We use a tool from everede nine9. It is an indexable engraving tool with many different grades and shape inserts. I'm not sure what the cutting specs are that the milling guys in our shop use but I've been engraving titanium in the lathe .005 deep at max rpm of 6000 feeding at 35ipm and I haven't changed an insert in 3000 parts so far. And I'm limited to rpms as I only have a 1:1 rotary tool. Might be worth checking into?
 

snowshooze

Hot Rolled
Joined
Sep 15, 2010
Location
Anchorage, Alaska, USA
A dang center drill is the day-in day-out engraving tool.. for deeper engravings.
If you are only going a couple thousandths.. maybe a diamond drag will do it.
I built my own for those scratch engravings.
But, just a couple hours ago, I built a fixture, and I always engrave their name, this time with a #4 Center drill, .025 deep, which was excessive, however it looks great.
 

Mountain co-op

Plastic
Joined
Feb 27, 2022
We have been using a 1/8 ball mill for a couple months. Love the quality as there is zero burs for our welders to clean up.

Currently swapping back and forth between a tapered ball mill and a carbide step drill. Problem with step drill is the tip fades away after a couple hundred parts.
 








 
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