The cutting process should be divided into at least 3 process types:
Roughing, semi-finishing and finishing, and sometimes even super finishing (mostly high-speed cutting applications). The residual milling is prepared for finishing after the semi-finishing process. It is important to work hard in each process to leave a uniform distribution of allowance for the next process.
If the direction of the tool path and the workload are rarely changed quickly, the tool life may be extended and more predictable. If possible, the finishing process should be performed on a dedicated machine. This will increase the geometric accuracy and quality of the mold during shorter commissioning and assembly times.
So, which tool should be used mainly in these different processes?
(1) Roughing process: round insert milling cutter, ball end mill and end mill with a large arc radius.
(2) Semi-finishing process: round insert milling cutter (circular insert milling cutter with diameter range of 10-25mm), ball end mill.
(3) Finishing process: round insert milling cutter, ball end mill.
(4) Residual milling process: round insert milling cutter, ball end mill, vertical mill.
It is important to optimize the cutting process by selecting a specific combination of tool size, geometry and grade, as well as cutting parameters and appropriate milling strategies.