Cutting 3.25" Hole in Aluminum - Page 3
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  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by MilGunsmith View Post
    Since you can rough out the hole in the plate with the hole saw, why not use a line boring type cutter in the lathe. A piece of round stock with a center hole drilled in one end, chuck up the other end. Somewhere in the middle, make a square hole to fit a lathe bit, either HSS or a carbide tip. The hole only needs to be .375" or .500" square depending on the bit. It could even be .250", just drill a hole and square it up with a file. Make another hole at right angles to the square hole that is tapped for a setscrew to hold the bit in place. Stick the bit thru and measure for your finished diameter and lock in place. The bar runs thru the roughed hole and the tailstock supports the center drilled end. Fixture the plate on the carriage with the angle and then run the carriage back and forth to make your cut.
    Great idea
    Got me to thinking in another direction now
    Love it...Thanks
    Paul

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    Quote Originally Posted by GregSY View Post
    So you don't believe what I told you about fly cutters not working in a drill press.....How are you gonna create an accurate hole when the whole table is shaking .200" and that flimsy 2MT spindle comes loose 1/4 way through the job?


    The fly cutter is sorta the darling of the home machine crowd. It's like the can of motor rebuild oil, or the spark plug that promises 2000MPG and an extra 150HP.
    I'm sorry I don't follow
    We have decided to go another route since the general concession was the fly cutter in the drill press would not work safely...

  3. #43
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    VALCUT-TOOLS - VALCUT / PROTOTYP GEORGE VAL

    i forget who the u.s. dealer is.

  4. #44
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    got busy today and fabed a holder for some 1/2" cutters I saw advertised...Thinking along the lines of staying with the round cutters rather then going square but I may get that wild hair and modify it
    I made it with a 1.5" OD and a 1" shaft which later if I need I can reduce the shaft diameter if needed
    Now I need to order the cutters
    And I'm starting on the angle iron backing plate for the lathe
    Still learning the ins and outs and trying to get the finish down to an art but for this project it will do...

    holder-1.jpg holder.jpg

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    Quick hole:
    1/2" or 3/4" piece of plywood
    Router with 1/4" or so carbide slotting bit
    Small piece of 1/8" rod for a pivot

    Plunge router through the plywood, might want to make a bit bigger hole for chip ejection
    Mount router to plywood
    Drill 1/8" hole in plywood on the radius of your hole size from the outside of the bit, in this case 1.625" to the outside edge of bit. This is your pivot.
    Drill 1/8" hole center of part where you want your 3.25" hole. Might want to test in scrap first for size. If it's wrong, just move your 1/8" hole in the plywood a bit. Drill a hole in closer, the radius of your bit, to run for chip clearance.

    Now go to town. Just start the router and spin it in the pivot. You can take about a 32nd per pass with a plain old wood carbide bit or a good spiral upcut. You can go bigger on the bit, but don't go smaller, no rigidity and the deflection will make for a poor finish. Run the inside arc first, then the outside. The inside one gives the outside one chip clearance. Don't move too slow, rubbing will weld your bit with aluminum swarf. If it happens, soak the bit in lye overnight. I've welded bits as thick as the bit diameter with aluminum, soaked them and the aluminum comes right off. Doesn't affect the bit. My routers are variable speed, but I found running them wide open worked the best. AND. a quality spiral upcut will make your life pretty easy.

    I've done this before I had CNC's and people were pleased. Make sure all your pivot holes are tight, that will keep your tolerances a bit closer. And watch your ending break through pass. Raise the router in three spots to make thin bridges to keep your center in place. Once done, wiggle the center a bit and it will break out. I usually use a simple deburring tool to clean up the leftovers from the bridges. A ball bearing edger router bit can clean up and debur as well. We still do that on a simple overhead mounted router. Way faster than running a second CNC program to edge with.

    We have two CNC routers that we run aluminum on and the feeds and speeds are fast, but it's controlled so well that we don't get breakage. 36" per minute, depth of cut is 0.055. Smaller slots so we use 1/8" bits. SOU300 bits, advertised as for plastics, but they last forever in aluminum. Amana bits struggled for some reason. We run a cleaner pass at the end of the routine, same track, but no extra depth of cut, sides are nice and shiny with no chatter. With an 1/8" bit in a router. Go figure. We run more aluminum in those router CNC's than we do on any of the mills.

    By the way, I've split 3/4" sheets of aluminum with a skil-saw this same way. Set up straight edges on each side that keeps the saw in line and take a bunch of thin swipes until you part the piece. You can usually take a hundred per pass.

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    This looks like a lathe job! Mount it in the chuck or bolt to the face plate if quality is important to you. I question doing this in a drill press if you want first rate quality as you indicated.

    Roger

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    Quote Originally Posted by Texasbowhunter View Post
    A fly cutter seems reasonable from what I looked at last night before I went to bed
    I have never used a fly cutter
    Are you supposed to provide a hole first then gradually increase the cutter of the fly up to size increasing the hole dia. slowly while feeding?

    The first and foremost is safety
    But if I can rig something up on the cross slide that would hold this odd triangular shaped material in place and that is providing I can rig something up with my limited visualization I might be able to make the cut with the use of the lathe

    Ill try and come up with some ideas hopefully watching the YouTube videos and getting the brain working...
    Or
    A fly cutter in the Drill press? would be an option as well
    I like the thoughts of using the lathe better though
    paul
    If you can fasten a chunk of heavy structural angle iron or even channel to your cross slide,
    you can then mount a fly cutter or even a tool bit on a face plate and face the angle or channel to true it, then mount your work piece with clamps or through bolts and then use a
    treppaning cutter or a smaller hole saw followed by the fly cutter.

    It takes a bit of time and patience to get it right.

    A light duty drill press will just be frustration.
    Unless you have power feed, it will be almost impossible to get a uniform feed for the smooth finish you want.
    Besides that the drill probably won't have the torque to operate a treppaning cutter that diameter. The regular cup hole saws are not precise enough to give a decent finish, they are strictly for rough holes. If used, another tool is used to clean up.

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    Most of the suggested methods to do this task are ridiculous.

    Treepan it on a Bridgeport or a drill press, it can be done even without power.

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    Yea, after waiting two to six weeks for them to get a round tuit.



    Quote Originally Posted by BT Fabrication View Post
    this would literally take 5 minutes in a shop with a cnc machine.

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    I want to let those of you that had reached out and suggested a better way to go on cutting the hole cleanly in my 1/2" plate of aluminum...
    After fabricating the tool holder (post #44) for the cutters which was going to hold my cutter was completed I had to wait on the mail service to deliver the cutters...Got redirected one day and slowed the delivery time down by 2 days but none the less they came in yesterday...I got busy and put the angle iron on my cross slide portion of the lathe...Got the aluminum plate clamped up and centered in all the axis as well I could...
    Cut the starter hole with the cup hole saws that I had, that was close to the dia. I was shooting for and success...But just as I assumed and expected would happen the initial hole was not a clean cut...
    Loaded up my fabed tool in chuck and got the initial set and proceeded to clean up the hole and make round and true...Success (got my confidence feeling better)
    moved the cutter a bit at a time and bored until final dimensions were to the desired measurements I was in the realm of looking for...Success...
    Thank You to all of you that helped me understand a better way to accomplish and improve my skill level...
    Most of all got my mind to working and seeing a different approach to get the outcome I was seeking...
    Thank You all
    Paul

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    Quote Originally Posted by Texasbowhunter View Post
    I like this...one day I would like to make one but for the time being I had visualized a angle plate which I happen to have and mounting to the cross slide...Then attach securely the triangular plate to the angle iron in the location I'm seeking...So were on the same page here

    Now where I'm at a loss is what type of cutter are you suggesting for the 3.2 dia. hole that will be in the chuck of the lathe?
    Thanks
    Paul
    Get a boring head with a straight shank. Hold it in a collet or in a 4 jaw. You can bore precision holes into the plate securely mounted onto the carriage using an angle plate. As other suggested pattern routing will get you close but your surface finish may not be what you want. It is also very difficult to precisely position a template and hold it securely for the router to cut a precision hole.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Texasbowhunter View Post
    I want to let those of you that had reached out and suggested a better way to go on cutting the hole cleanly in my 1/2" plate of aluminum...
    After fabricating the tool holder (post #44) for the cutters which was going to hold my cutter was completed I had to wait on the mail service to deliver the cutters...Got redirected one day and slowed the delivery time down by 2 days but none the less they came in yesterday...I got busy and put the angle iron on my cross slide portion of the lathe...Got the aluminum plate clamped up and centered in all the axis as well I could...
    Cut the starter hole with the cup hole saws that I had, that was close to the dia. I was shooting for and success...But just as I assumed and expected would happen the initial hole was not a clean cut...
    Loaded up my fabed tool in chuck and got the initial set and proceeded to clean up the hole and make round and true...Success (got my confidence feeling better)
    moved the cutter a bit at a time and bored until final dimensions were to the desired measurements I was in the realm of looking for...Success...
    Thank You to all of you that helped me understand a better way to accomplish and improve my skill level...
    Most of all got my mind to working and seeing a different approach to get the outcome I was seeking...
    Thank You all
    Paul
    Most Home depot's have these in stock:
    https://www.homedepot.com/p/Malco-Ad...100520674-_-N&
    Curious how it would have worked in your thick aluminum....

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    Quote Originally Posted by digger doug View Post
    Most Home depot's have these in stock:
    https://www.homedepot.com/p/Malco-Ad...100520674-_-N&
    Curious how it would have worked in your thick aluminum....
    I have used that tool before and for light Sheetmetal it was adequate but for a clean hole it would not be a choice I would use since the quality of the cup saws would give a better finish then what that tool would give...
    paul

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    Quote Originally Posted by otrlt View Post
    Most of the suggested methods to do this task are ridiculous.

    Treepan it on a Bridgeport or a drill press, it can be done even without power.
    what do you use for trepanning? (post #43)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Texasbowhunter View Post
    I have used that tool before and for light Sheetmetal it was adequate but for a clean hole it would not be a choice I would use since the quality of the cup saws would give a better finish then what that tool would give...
    paul
    Finish or size ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by dcsipo View Post
    Get a boring head with a straight shank. Hold it in a collet or in a 4 jaw. You can bore precision holes into the plate securely mounted onto the carriage using an angle plate. As other suggested pattern routing will get you close but your surface finish may not be what you want. It is also very difficult to precisely position a template and hold it securely for the router to cut a precision hole.
    Congrats on getting the project done, I think you picked the best path assuming you do not need a precise diameter hole. As suggested above, adding a boring head makes the job of adjusting the bit location easy and accurate. I have bored accurate holes and outside diameters on things I could not swing on the late. The cheep import boring head worked OK for me but I am way happier with the used wohlhaupter or narex and price for the used quality tool was similar to the new import.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GregSY View Post
    All these 'bore it in a lathe' comments ASSUME the part will fit in a lathe....not a great assumption.

    If your drill press is especially good, you could try an annular cutter.

    No way. I have a MT4 camelback, a Royersford Excelsior. It's not a Bickford or Cleerman, but it's not a Craftsman either. It will push a 2" twist drill if you have to. I've also had the fortune of using a 3 3/8" annular cutter, brand new. It chattered at 27 RPM but cleared up when dropping down to 18. It was also not hard to stall the belt if I fed to hard. That amount of torque might just twist off an MT2.


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