External milling form tool needed - Can't figure out what tool is called?
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    Default External milling form tool needed - Can't figure out what tool is called?

    I saw a video a while back of a machine machining some sort of manifold that had a bunch of male features sticking out of it.

    What I found interesting about the video is that they had a 2 headed "boring tool" that held form inserts on it. The inserts were facing inward toward the center of the feature they were milling.

    They positioned the tool right over the center of the boss, with the spindle on. Then they interpolated a small circle there, leaving a nice and pretty boss complete with grooves and angles, etc.

    But for the life of me, I can't figure out what this type of tool is called??? Or where to look to order them?

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    Are you talking about a trepan / face grooving tool ?

    Trepanning
    CoroBore 825 SL face grooving

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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt G. View Post
    Are you talking about a trepan tool ?

    Trepanning
    No.

    I'm thinking of a tool that would be like this:



    https://i.imgur.com/JM3rLxs.png

    Please excuse my very professional drawing.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails jm3rlxs.jpg  

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    A picture is worth 1000 words, I follow now. Never seen anything like it, I'm sure it was a special. You could probably get anyone who does custom indexables to make one for you, it won't be cheap though.

    I use Vermont Indexable or K-Tool for my specials.

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    Best term I can think of would be a form cutter. As Matt says it would be a special order tool who's value would depend on how much use you could get out of it.

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    I have never seen a form being cut with a tool like that, but I make several parts where due to the size and depth, normal extended reach tools are not practical. For these parts I make hollow mills or some people call them annular cutters. I use these for truing the post and cutting the relief at the bottom of the part.

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    I have seen heads like that made by Horn, but I suspect they were specials.

    I have an old Wohlhaupter boring/facing head that I've actually used in the configuration quite a few times, obviously only with a single tool, but it works.

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    Couldn't you accomplish the same thing with a more standard form tool? Something similar to a spline mill I use, but with your profile cut into the insert?

    splines_milling_1573.jpg

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    Look/search for hollow mill tools, this company is an example: Genesee Manufacturing

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    Okuma U axis is the only way I've seen those tools used.

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    Is this what you were thinking of?
    YouTube

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mtndew View Post
    Is this what you were thinking of?
    YouTube
    No, I don't think it is super clear yet even with the illustration.

    They had form inserts in the tool like I drew above. The "effective diameter" of the inserts was larger than the part in the middle. You would position XY at the center of the boss, Z to depth, then you would feed over in X, then interpolate a circle with the same radius as the amount you moved in X

    The code would look something like:

    G0X0Y0
    G0Z.1
    G1Z-1.
    G1X.500F5(starts cutting here)
    G3I-.500(machine interpolates a circle, which creates external grooves/profiles)
    G1X0(back to center)
    G0Z5.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt G. View Post
    Couldn't you accomplish the same thing with a more standard form tool? Something similar to a spline mill I use, but with your profile cut into the insert?

    splines_milling_1573.jpg
    Having the inserts on the inside of a hollow tool will give a better surface finish than inserts on the outside of the tool for any given feed.

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    Why not just a plain ole helical endmill with the form ground into it?
    Then it's just like milling a pin or any OD.
    Can you mill a .500 radius on the outside corner of a part and get a good finish?
    Bob

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    Single tool boring heads can be used for for outside turning (you need a reversed boring bar, no big thing) Standard boring heads for mills are sometimes two headed - usually for speed I think?

    I would think you could get the right effect with either (a) a single point tool being programmed in a kind of in/out breathing helix or (b) a form tool run around in something that looks like interpolating a bore but reversed.

    It's not clear to me that you need more than one insert....

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    Also, U-axis isn't specific to Okuma - but every one I've seen at trade shows (maybe 2?) had a stunning price tag...

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    Once upon a time, this would have been called "planetary milling" and, if a helical path were involved, perhaps "thread whirling". Was a pretty standard technique for shops doing mass production of parts with external profiles.

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    I might have seen that video. Was it a very large WFL machine doing what appears to be a front landing strut? It looked exactly like the tool you drew and how you described it.

    Also pieces of that video are in like a thousand YouTube videos of cool machining so it would be really easy to run across and very difficult to find again.

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    You guys talking U Axis-do you mean the Spindle being timed to the feature shape? Otherwise U would be redundant. Like Turning an Oval in a VMC, right?

    R

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    Quote Originally Posted by bryan_machine View Post
    Single tool boring heads can be used for for outside turning (you need a reversed boring bar, no big thing) Standard boring heads for mills are sometimes two headed - usually for speed I think?

    I would think you could get the right effect with either (a) a single point tool being programmed in a kind of in/out breathing helix or (b) a form tool run around in something that looks like interpolating a bore but reversed.

    It's not clear to me that you need more than one insert....
    Definitely don't need more than one form insert to do this. I drew 2 because that's what the tool I saw looked like, but 1 would suffice.

    Quote Originally Posted by CarbideBob View Post
    Why not just a plain ole helical endmill with the form ground into it?
    Then it's just like milling a pin or any OD.
    Can you mill a .500 radius on the outside corner of a part and get a good finish?
    Bob
    I can, and I would. The part I need to make has a relatively large OD (3.5") and I'm not positive that the idea I have with the tool I'm looking for will work well enough (don't want chatter). Problem is that there is a feature that sticks out about .400" on the profile of this part with a cut length of 1", so I need a relatively large tool (a 1.5" diameter endmill would only be .700 in the middle). Added to that is I need this tool sooner rather than later, and I would probably be looking at grinding whatever tool I use myself. It'd be a ton easier to grind a piece of flat HSS than it would a big endmill. I may split up the profile into 2 separate tools if I do go the round-tool route.

    Quote Originally Posted by sfriedberg View Post
    Once upon a time, this would have been called "planetary milling" and, if a helical path were involved, perhaps "thread whirling". Was a pretty standard technique for shops doing mass production of parts with external profiles.
    Yeah, this is pretty much just like thread whirling, but it isn't advancing in a helical motion. I appreciate that there's a term for it. There's not much to go on with a google search, "planetary milling" apparently is a good way to make balls and grind grit down to a uniform size. I did, however, find an excerpt from a book from the 1960s talking about planetary milling, or "planamilling". The latter term doesn't drum up much more results on google.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jaxian View Post
    I might have seen that video. Was it a very large WFL machine doing what appears to be a front landing strut? It looked exactly like the tool you drew and how you described it.

    Also pieces of that video are in like a thousand YouTube videos of cool machining so it would be really easy to run across and very difficult to find again.
    I don't recall if it was in a "cool machining" video or not, I had youtube on in another tab, and when I came back to the tab, I saw the video I mentioned. It was machining a brass manifold casting that had several male threaded features with grooves/contours on them. If I recall there was at least 2 tools in the video like I drew above. They were threadmilled afterward.



    ----


    If I do go try doing this, I have a big Devleig boring head that has a slide that I can remove, put in a longer one that has an L-shape, with a slot to hold an insert towards the ID rather than the OD. It would be a single insert, not 2. I am leaning towards not doing it this way but I've got a couple days to decide. Haven't even finished fixturing this part yet.


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