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ADO-TRS ‘Triple Revolution’ 3-Flute Carbide Drill

Ultra-machining efficiency and stability in steel applications

- Takahiro Yamamoto, OSG Corporation Applications Engineer (Drill Development Division)

Three-flute drills are commonly employed in manufacturing. However, they are mostly used in the processing of materials with short cutting chips and low cutting resistance, such as cast iron, ductile cast iron and aluminum alloy. Three-flute drills are sometimes advertised to be suitable for steel materials such as carbon steel, alloy steel and mild steel. However, with a smaller chip room geometry than 2-flute drills, the cutting thrust resistance in 3-flute drills is also greater.


Due to constraints in workpiece configuration, equipment and setup, conventional 3-flute drills often are unable to maximize both speed and precision as advertised. Moreover, in steel processing, the strength of the work material and viscosity are high, making chip separation and stable processing a challenge. With high thrust force and poor chip evacuation, sudden machining troubles such as tool breakage and chipping are common headaches of 3-flute drills.


To help manufacturers maximize productivity, OSG has recently introduced a new revolutionary drilling innovation – the ADO-TRS – nicknamed as the ‘Triple Revolution’ drill, for ultra-machining efficiency and stability in steel materials.


Features of ADO-TRS ‘Triple Revolution’ Drill

There are three major features that enable the ADO-TRS to stably process steel applications.


The most notable key feature is the newly engineered R gash geometry (pat. P) as illustrated in figure 1.

Figure 1. ADO-TRS’ unique R gash geometry enables low cutting resistance and creates short and compact chips stably.

The optimized R shape geometry is designed to control chip flow direction to facilitate trouble-tree chip-evacuation. With this new feature, the ADO-TRS is able to significantly improve chip separation even in steel materials by breaking them into small pieces and consistent shape. In addition, this new geometry can reduce cutting resistance (thrust resistance), by as much as 30 percent versus conventional tooling, enabling it to outperform even 2-flute drills in high-feed processing with minimal cutting resistance.


The second key feature of the ADO-TRS is its wide chip pocket configuration.

In 3-flute drills, chips are difficult to be discharged from the center of the drill. The ADO-TRS employs a wide chip room flute geometry to improve chip ejection. Combined with the R gash specification, chips are curled for greater separation capability, which leads to smooth and stable chip evacuation.


Last but not least, the ADO-TRS is coated with OSG’s original EgiAs coating for high durability. The EgiAs coating is consist of overlapping nano-periodical layers and wear-resistance layers, engineered to suppress the propagation of cracks that are likely to occur during drilling. The wear-resistance layer is composed of multiple hard layers; while the nano-periodical is a combination of hard and soft layers. With a mixture of hard and soft layers, internal stress can be relieved, allowing the EgiAs coating to achieve both high wear resistance and extreme toughness to ensure stable and consistent tool life under aggressive cutting conditions.


Cutting Data

1. Excellent Chip Formation and Evacuation in Steel Applications

Two of ADO-TRS’ most notable benefits are its superior chip management and low resistance drilling capability in steel materials.


SCM440 (raw) is one of the more viscous materials among steels. When processing this material with MQL, chips generated by conventional 3-flute drills and 2-flute drills are elongated as depicted in figure 2. As depicted in figure 3, the conventional 3-flute drill is unable to break chips into small pieces. As a result, remnants of elongated chips remain in the flute of the drill. The ADO-TRS, on the other hand, is able to demonstrate excellent chip form consistently as shown in figure 2.

Figure 2. Chip shape comparison in SCM440.


Figure 3. Condition of the conventional 3-flute drill after processing SCM440.



Figure 4. Chip shape comparison in SS400


Figure 5. Tool life comparison in SS400


Moreover, in the processing of SS400 using water-soluble coolant, sudden tool damage and chipping caused by tangled chips are prone to occur. The stability in chip formation and evacuation is a key factor for achieving stable processing in mild steel SS400, which is particularly prone to chip problems. As illustrated in figure 4 and figure 5, the ADO-TRS demonstrates overwhelming chip separation capability and long tool life even in the processing of SS400 in comparison to the conventional 3-flute drill and 2-flute drill.


2. Low Resistance Drilling

Next, figure 6 illustrates a comparison of cutting resistance when processing under the cutting condition depicted in figure 2.

Figure 6. Cutting resistance (thrust resistance) comparison in SCM440.


As shown in figure 6, the ADO-TRS is able to reduce thrust resistance by approximately 35 percent versus conventional 3-flute drills, and generated even less overall thrust resistance when compared to a standard 2-flute carbide drill, which has one less flute and larger chip rooms. Under identical cutting condition, the ADO-TRS is able to achieve the lowest thrust resistance.


Due to high cutting resistance inherent in conventional 3-flute drills and the various constraints present in processing environment, such as the machine, workpiece geometry, work fixture, etc., conventional 3-flute drills are often unable to maximize high-feed performance and precision. The ADO-TRS, on the other hand, excels in wide range of cutting conditions, truly reflecting its versatile capability.


Next, we will evaluate the performance of the above features combined with OSG’s original EgiAs coating in the following case study, where the ADO-TRS is able to demonstrate long tool life and stable processing in a crankshaft made of alloy steel. In terms of shape, although the work holding force (clamp) at the time of processing is not high, the effect of the low cutting resistance of the ADO-TRS is able to surpass the carbide 2-flute drill with greater feed-rate. As shown in figure 7, the ADO-TRS is able to achieve higher efficiency and significantly reduce processing time versus the competitor 2-flute drill.


Figure 7. Case study of machining time and tool life improvement in the processing of an automotive crankshaft.


As depicted in this case study, the ADO-TRS is able to demonstrate exceptional stability, high-productivity, long tool life in steel materials, which conventional tools are challenged by instability. Furthermore, with capabilities to resolve common challenges of 3-flute drills such as high thrust force and poor chip evacuation in steel applications, the ADO-TRS is setting a new standard for 3-flute drills with reliable performance never witnessed before in the cutting tool sector.


The ADO-TRS’ unique R gash geometry feature has also been applied to OSG’s ADO 40xD and 50xD carbide drills with through coolant for highly efficient deep-hole drilling. The R gash geometry enables super low cutting resistance and exceptional chip control, optimized for superior performance in ultra-deep-hole applications. This geometry has proven success not only in 3-flute drills, but also in 2-flute drills. OSG will look to apply its superior tooling geometry to other products to further enhance productivity, tool life, stability and precision.


For manufacturers who are especially struggling with chip evacuation problems in steel applications, look to the ADO-TRS to experience ultra-machining efficiency and stability.


The ADO-TRS is available from diameter 3 mm up to 20 mm, in processing depth of 3xD and 5xD, and is suitable for applications in carbon steels, alloy steels, mild steels, cast iron and hardened steels.


Photo Captions

ADO-TRS.The ADO-TRS ‘Triple Revolution’ is OSG’s latest drilling innovation for ultra-machining efficiency in a wide range of materials. Its unique R gash geometry enables high thrust resistance and exceptional chip control, which are common challenges of 3-flute drills.

ADO-40xD 50xD. The ADO-TRS’ unique R gash geometry feature has also been applied to OSG’s ADO 40xD and 50xD carbide drills with through coolant for highly efficient deep-hole drilling. The R gash geometry enables super low cutting resistance and exceptional chip control, optimized for superior performance in ultra-deep-hole applications.


Productivity Packed

AE-TL-N DLC Coated Carbide End Mill Drives Greater Efficiency in Aluminum Part Processing

Frank Twomey | OSG USA

Founded in 1968, Ross Industries, Inc. is a specialist in food processing and packaging solutions. Some of its key products include meat tenderizers, antimicrobial intervention systems, chilling and freezing equipment, formers and presses, slicers, macerators, tray sealing equipment, and more. All Ross systems are designed to help processors streamline food manufacturing and packaging functions to improve quality, productivity, and food safety while minimizing waste. With more than 50 years of industry expertise, Ross Industries has built an international reputation as one of the world’s finest food processing and packaging system providers. Employing approximately 100 staff, Ross Industries’ manufacturing plant is located in the city of Midland, Virginia, USA, with an estimate production area of 80,000-square-feet.

Founded in 1968, Ross Industries, Inc. is a specialist in food processing and packaging solutions. Employing approximately 100 staff, Ross Industries’ manufacturing plant is located in the city of Midland, Virginia, USA, with an estimate production area of 80,000-square-feet.

Recently, Ross Industries was tasked with reducing cycle times on all of its aluminum parts. OSG Territory Sales Manager Frank Twomey has been in touch with Ross Industries through a distributor for about two years ago. In need to optimize productivity, OSG was given with an opportunity to test cut the upper chamber 6061 aluminum alloy part used in Ross Industries’ tray sealers for food packaging.

A CAD model of the front & back of the upper chamber, a part used in Ross Industries' tray sealers for food packaging.

Ross Industries has been producing these aluminum upper chambers for more than 25 years. Approximately 80 chambers are made annually along with thousands of other aluminum parts. The upper chambers are machined using a Doosan HM 1000 horizontal machining center with CAT-50 spindle taper.

The upper chambers are machined using a Doosan HM 1000 horizontal machining center with CAT-50 spindle taper.

Ross Industries was originally using a competitor 1.5-inch diameter indexable shoulder cutter for the application. The competitor tool was used at a speed of 6,000 rpm (2,358 sfm, 717.8 m/min), a feed rate of 120 ipm (3,048 mm/min), 0.005 ipt (0.127 mm/t), 0.3-inch (7.62 mm) radial depth of cut, 0.375-inch (9.525 mm) axial depth of cut, and at a metal removal rate of 13.5 inch3/min (221.2 cm3/min).

The upper chambers are made of 6061 aluminum alloy.

Upon a detail evaluation of the application, Twomey recommended OSG’s 3-flute 1-inch diameter AE-TL-N DLC coated square end mill (EDP# 86301809). The AE-TL-N DLC coated carbide end mill is extremely effective for non-ferrous materials such as aluminum alloys that require welding resistance and lubricity. With excellent cutting sharpness, it is able to suppress burrs to achieve superb surface finish. The AE-TL-N features a unique flute form to enable trouble-free chip evacuation and a large core design for high rigidity to prevent chattering. Its center cutting edge configuration enables the tool to be used for plunging. Furthermore, with the addition of OSG’s DLC-SUPER HARD coating, long tool life can be achieved. This end mill series is available in square, sharp corner edge and radius types to accommodate a wide range of applications.

The AE-TL-N DLC coated carbide end mill is extremely effective for non-ferrous materials such as aluminum alloys that require welding resistance and lubricity.

The AE-TL-N DLC coated carbide end mill was tested at a speed of 5,125 rpm (1,343 sfm, 408.7 m/min), a feed rate of 231 ipm (5,867 mm/min), 0.015 ipt (0.382 mm/t), 0.14-inch (3.556 mm) radial depth of cut, 1.62-inch (41.148 mm) axial depth of cut, and at a metal removal rate of 52.39 inch3/min (858.5 cm3/min). Cycle time on the upper chambers went from 34.5 hours to nine hours.

By switching to the AE-TL-N, Ross Industries has reduced about 75 percent of cycle time on the upper chambers and is now on average achieving a 150 percent cycle time reduction on other aluminum parts.

By switching to the AE-TL-N DLC coated carbide end mill, cycle time on the upper chambers went from 34.5 hours to nine hours.

“This end mill creates chips so fast that our machines chip conveyors couldn’t keep up,” said Ross Industries Machine Shop Manager Greg Williams. “We had to speed up the conveyors.”

Taken in consideration of factors such as tool change time, machine cost, labor, etc., it is estimated that an annual cost savings of $183,000 can be gained. In addition to the upper chamber part, Ross Industries has also converted all of its aluminum end mills to OSG’s AE-TL-N series in various sizes.

From left, Ross Industries Machine Shop Manager Greg Williams and OSG USA Territory Sales Manager Frank Twomey pose for a photograph with a completed upper chamber.

“With the performance and consistent tool life of the AE-TL-N we are able to run these tools lights out,” said Williams. “In some cases, it is able to achieve as much as four times the metal removal rate versus the competitor tool.”

For more information on OSG’s AE-TL-N DLC coated end mill for non-ferrous materials and Ross Industries

High-Efficiency Milling in Inconel 718

VGM End Mill Boosts Productivity and Lowers Cost Per Part in Aerospace Bracket Application
Sean McIntosh, OSG USA


Founded in 1951 in Phoenix, Arizona, United States, Allied Tool & Die Co. is a family-owned precision machine and fabrication company that specializes in the manufacturing of quality parts for aerospace, medical, communications and commercial industries throughout the world. Seventy years since its establishment, this privately owned shop has grown with multiple facilities and an estimated 32,000 square feet of manufacturing space in Phoenix, Arizona.

One of the challenges Allied Tool & Die faced recently was the machining of aerospace brackets made of Inconel 718. As is with most shops, machining Inconel 718 is time consuming. Moreover, due to the material's special high strength and heat resistance properties, short tool life is a common obstacle.

In search for performance improvement, Allied Tool & Die CNC Process and Machining Manager Jamie Lerma reached out to his local OSG representative for new solutions. Lerma had worked with OSG previously on a 13-8 stainless steel application by utilizing OSG's HY-PRO® CARB VGM series end mill to achieve high-efficiency milling.


OSG's HY-PRO® CARB VGM is a high performance variable geometry end mill series. Its variable index and unique flute geometry enable the reduction of vibration and chatter, promoting smooth and stable cutting with low cutting forces. With the addition of OSG proprietary multi-layer EXO coating, higher wear and heat resistance is achieved to prolong tool life. OSG's VGM offering features 5-, 6- and 7-flute lineups, and is available with multiple lengths of cut, with both square end and corner radius variations. This series is suitable for carbon steels, alloy steels, die steels, stainless steels, cast iron, nickel alloy, titanium, and hardened steels up to 45 HRC.

For the 13-8 stainless steel application, the VGM end mill dominated the machining result by extending tool life from seven parts to 21 parts per tool. The parts were also completed in half the time and the tool cost is also cheaper than the competitor tool. Lerma was so impressed by the VGM end mill that he decided to apply the tool to the Inconel 718 aerospace bracket application.

Allied Tool & Die was previously using a high feed indexable milling cutter for the Inconel 718 aerospace bracket application. However, the amount of time and money spent on changing the inserts was less than desired. The previous competitor tool was used at 150 SFM (45.7 m/min),0.009 IPT (0.23 mm/t), 0.05 Aa (ap = 1.27 mm) and 0.75 Ar (ae = 19.05 mm). After reprogramming to utilize OSG's 0.5-inch diameter 5-flute VGM carbide end mill with a 0.030-inch (0.762 mm) corner radius and 1.25-inch (31.75 mm) length of cut (EDP# VGM5-0143), the cutting parameters were changed to 250 SFT (76.2 mm/min,
2,548 min'1), 0.0022 IPT (0.056 mm/t,713 mm/min), 0.75 Aa and 0.035 Ar. The application went from a 4-hour cycle time to just one hour and 45 minutes. Allied Tool & Die no longer had to keep stopping the machine to rotate or change inserts, which they were doing four times per part previously. By switching to the VGM end mill, the tool was loaded, and the job did not have to be tended to until the part was completed. In terms of efficiency improvement, Allied Tool & Die estimated that the tool change has generated a cost savings of $6,875 USD on the Inconel 718 aerospace bracket parts. Moreover, with a lower tooling price versus the previous milling cutter, the cost of tooling also decreased by almost $100 USD per part. With the VGM end mill, Allied Tool & Die was able to machine Inconel 718 at an astounding 250 surface feet per minute (76.2 m/min)- a speed that is only commonly seen in
alloy or stainless steels, not HRSA materials.

With the recent successes, Allied Tool & Die's CNC Programmer John Hernandez decided to apply the
VGM end mill into most jobs he programs. Being such a versatile tool, the VGM can be used to machine anything from common carbon steels up to the nickel alloys required by the aerospace industry.

"This VGM end mill saved us a ton of time," said Allied Tool & Die CNC Process and Machining Manager Jamie Lerma, who has started ordering the VGM series end mill to keep in inventory for whatever job comes up.

Learn more about OSG's HY-PRO® CARB VGM end mill here


1. A CAD/CAM model of a part made from 13-8 stainless steel. Image courtesy of Allied Tool & Die.

2. A CAD/CAM model of an aerospace bracket made from Inconel 718. Image courtesy of Allied Tool & Die.

3. A part made from 13-8 stainless steel that was machined by OSG's HY-PRO® CARB VGM end mill

4. An aerospace bracket from Inconel 718 that was machined by OSG's HY-PRO® CARB VGM end mill



Selecting CNC Machine Cutting Tools: 5 Important Considerations


Working with CNC machines that are not precise and versatile can make the machining process challenging. For this reason, engineers opt for non-cut-and-dried vertical milling machines. However, that does not necessarily mean that selecting any CNC machine cutting tools is restricted to how well they perform in terms of accuracy and precision.

One needs to be mindful of several factors when selecting such tools. Failure to do so may result in a poor-quality end product that no manufacturing unit wishes to produce.

Here are five important considerations when selecting CNC cutting tools. Take a look. 

1. CNC Machining Tool Configurations

A CNC machine features different configuration types. Many CNC machining tools offer multiple features. In other words, many CNC tools can be configured for multiple tasks to be handled by a single cutting machine. This feature further reduces the time needed to complete the entire machining process.

Multi-feature CNC machines can also save considerable time, which may go into changing the tools for different requirements. However, it should be noted that different configurations are designed for different workpiece types and materials. Thus, engineers must know which tool configuration they need for their workpieces.

2. Materials And Features Of The Workpiece

The tool to be used is highly dependent on the material of the workpiece one is operating on. Experts recommend different CNC machining cutting tools for different material types. For example, the Stecker machine works with aluminum, grey iron castings, and ductile iron.

Even within these materials, aluminum tends to have the highest machinability and SFM (surface feet per minute). Therefore, engineers and manufacturers should understand the materials and features of their workpieces.

3. The Capacity of CNC Machines

Tooling machines should be shortlisted depending on the production volume of one's projects. CNC machines can use the majority of cutting tools. However, that does not equate to the enhanced efficiency of those CNC machines. Experts recommend that a higher horsepower machine allows engineers to use multiple combo tools suitable for performing various functions.

In addition, the casting of the machine is also an important consideration. Case in point: smaller castings do not require the help of hosts to move them around, unlike large castings. Running multiple tool parts on a pallet can save considerable time that may go into changing the tool parts.

In other words, selecting the right cutting tool is all about matching the machine's ability and availability to the requirements of projects.

4. Materials Used in the Cutting Tools

Engineers have to work with different materials as per project needs. One must note that the materials used for designing cutting tools can enhance the longevity and finishing of the end product. Case in point: some cutting tools can be developed using materials that are more durable than others. Most cutting tools are made of solid carbide because solid carbide creates a durable cutting tool.

However, polycrystalline diamond-tipped (PCD-tipped) tools can create the hardest and the most reliable cutting tools. It is worth noting that the tool life for a drilling tool made from PCD is around four times longer than that of ones made from solid carbide. The PCD-tipped tools are also known to be 25 times faster than the carbide-cutting tools. In addition, the precision of the PCD-tipped tools is also better.

However, one of the important points to be wary of when selecting materials for cutting tools is the cost. While PCD-tipped tools may seem like the best option for cutting high-precision edges, they come with an expensive price tag. Thus, solid carbide is a less expensive option that costs 75 times less than PCD-tipped tools.

5. Feed and Spindle Speed

The feed and spindle speed are two technical terms that one needs to understand to create better end products. Feed speed is technically the rate at which the work material moves inside the cutter. Feed speed is always dependent on the spindle speed. Failure to use an accurate feed and spindle speed can even burn the workpiece.

Engineers must mathematically determine the optimal feed speed before operating on the workpiece to avoid unwanted results. It is important to note that feed speed is not the same as cutting speed, which is the peripheral speed of the tool. In other words, feed speed is associated with the movement of the cutting tool, while cutting speed is associated with the tools.


Engineers tend to work with designs with higher geometric complexity and different materials. As a result, it goes without saying that when working with computerized cutting tools, accuracy is the utmost priority. However, the tool's accuracy is not the only aspect that makes or breaks the efficiency of CNC machining processes.

One needs to be mindful of various aspects before deciding on the right tools for precise cutting. Awareness of the aforementioned factors is essential to enhance the efficiency and end product.


About the Author:

Vincent Hua

Vincent Hua is the Marketing Manager at TSINFA. He is passionate about helping people understand high-end and complex manufacturing processes. Besides writing and contributing his insights, Vincent is very keen on technological innovation that helps build highly precise and stable CNC Machinery.



OSG Announces the Release of 3B Thread Gages

We are pleased to announce the expansion of our 3B Thread Gages! Inch plug thread gages are used to inspect pitch diameter and pitch accuracy of internal threads. OSG inch plug gages are manufactured to Class X tolerances per ANSI B1.2. Go and No-Go gages from OSG are ground from premium HSS and hardened to 64Rc to ensure superior wear resistance. Gages are available with short form certifications.


The following list numbers are associated with the NEW 3B Thread Gages:



The 3B Thread Gages have the following features:

  •        High hardness TiN coating to provide long tool life.
  •        Gold coloring to visually analyze the wear condition in seconds.
OSG Announces the Release of the PHOENIX® PXM-PXSH Style Exchangeable Head End Mill

We are pleased to announce the expansion of our PHOENIX® PXM End Mill Offering with the addition of the NEW PHOENIX® PXSH Style Exchangeable Head End Mill! The PHOENIX® PXM is an exchangeable head end mill series for superior surface finish and precision in a variety of applications.


The following list numbers are associated with the NEW PHOENIX® PXM-PXSH Style:


  •        NEW! List #78PXSH     PHOENIX® PXM-PXSH (metric)


The PHOENIX® PXM-PXSH end mill offers the following features & benefits:

  •        OSG's proven cutting geometries and coatings produces high performance in a variety of applications and materials
  •        2-face contact (end face and taper) and buttress thread for fast and highly rigid clamping
  •        Radial runout less than 15µm and axial repeatability ±30µm for high accuracy and repeatability
  •        End mill style, inch and metric provides a complete offering
OSG Announces the Inch Size Additions to the A Brand AE-CR-MS-H End Mill

We are pleased to announce that inch sizes have been added to the A Brand AE-CR-MS-H End Mill offering! The A Brand AE-CR-MS-H is a multi-flute square type and radius type carbide end mill designed for stable and high-efficiency milling of high-hardness steels. With the addition of the new DUROREY coating uniquely engineered for high-hardness steels, high chipping resistance is made possible even in work materials exceeding 60 HRC, allowing long tool life and high speed milling.


The following list numbers are associated with the NEW A Brand AE-CR-MS-H series:


  •        NEW! List #8470             A Brand AE-CR-MS-H (inch)


The A Brand AE-CR-MS-H end mill offers the following features & benefits:

  •        Variable index to reduce chattering
  •        Cutting edge geometry for stable machining of high-hardness steels
  •        DUROREY coating which allows for outstanding performance in high-hardness steels
OSG Announces the Release of the A Brand AE-VTSS End Mill

We are pleased to announce the expansion of our A BRAND AE-VM end mill series with the addition of the NEW A BRAND AE-VTSS End Mill! The A Brand AE-VTSS is a duarise coated advanced multifunctional carbide end mill for ferrous metals. With superb chip handling, this stubby end mill can side mill, slot, ramp, and plunge. 


The following list numbers are associated with the NEW A Brand AE-VTSS series:


  •        NEW! List #8233             A Brand AE-VTSS (inch)
  •        NEW! List #8333             A Brand AE-VTSS (metric)


The A Brand AE-VTSS end mill offers the following features & benefits:

  •        Positive rake angle which reduces cutting force
  •        High rigidity to improve milling accuracy
  •        New flute form that facilitates excellent chip evacuation
  •        Duarise coating to minimize thermal cracks
  •        Variable leads which enables stable and high efficiency milling




Top 7 Milling Tools for CNC Cutting



There are almost as many distinct variations of CNC tools as there are finished products that could be milled. If you are familiar with the functions these tools perform, it will be much more straightforward for you to select the ones appropriate for the project you are working on. When it comes to the amount of time it takes and the quality of the work to be produced, choosing the appropriate cutting tool for your CNC milling machine, the material, and the type of milling can have a significant impact.

So here is a list of prominent milling tools utilized for CNC cutting.

Top 7 Milling Tools for CNC Cutting 

Different types of CNC milling tools make it feasible to achieve the highest level of product customization. While cutting into and shaping different types of materials, several tools are employed. The tool that should be utilized to cut also gets decided by the finalized design of the cut. 

Aside from these factors, specialists choose their tools based on how well they match the required speed with the desired finish. Depending on the ultimate purpose of the completed product, one of these two considerations might take precedence over the other.

The top 7 milling tools for CNC cutting are: 

1. End Mills

There are numerous kinds of end mills, each of which is designed for a particular kind of cutting. All end mills cut at an angle of ninety degrees.  A center-cutting end mill is what's required to make a vertical cut. These mills can cut both the center and the margins of the workpiece.

Non-center cutting end mills feature a hole in the middle of the tool and only contain cutting edges mostly along the ends of the mill. Since roughing end mills have fewer flutes than standard end mills, they are the tools of choice for making the initial cuts in a workpiece. You will need finishing end mills with additional flutes to obtain a design similar to the part you want to produce. It will enable you to deliver a component that is cut with immense precision.

The tool employed on a project will vary depending on several factors, the most important of which is the number of flutes and the material of its composition. The production of end mills typically involves the use of cobalt, high-speed steel, and carbide as raw materials. More details about the different types of mills (as per their material) are given below.

  • Cobalt: Cobalt mills only contain eight percent cobalt, with the remaining construction built of steel.  Cobalt mills can run at a pace that is 10 percent quicker than their counterparts.

  • Carbide: The use of carbide end mills is recommended for finishing procedures.

  • High-Speed Steel (HSS): It is the go-to material for mills of all kinds. It strikes an optimal balance between tool cost and service life. Since HSS has sufficient flexibility, it can be utilized for cutting iron and other materials.

End mills may perform a wide variety of cuts, the type of tool used depends on the type of cut being made:

  • Face Milling

It is the process of just cutting into one surface of a material.

  • Side Milling

It is used when chamfer mills are being employed to create beveled edges. To penetrate and smooth off the corner, you move the mill along the material's edge.

  • Ramping

Ramping is a way of cutting at an angle into a surface, usually a diagonal cut through the material. It produces an angled toolpath while concurrently milling in the radial and axial directions. Toolpaths for ramping can be either circular or linear.

  • Plunge Milling

It causes the end mill to plunge vertically into the workpiece. Like ramping, plunge milling necessitates using a center-cutting end mill to clean out the material from the hole's inside and perimeter.

  • Slot Milling

Slot milling creates slots using an end mill to carve a groove in a material while cutting the edges on both sides simultaneously.

2. Face Mills

This tool is primarily used to create a level surface on a solid portion of the material. As the first step in milling, this is often performed on the top of the stock to smooth it out. The cutter inserts in a face mill's sole body can be changed for specialized cutting tasks. You would require more cutters to remove metal at a faster rate.

3. Twist Drills

Drill bits resemble end mills in that they have a conical cutting tip on the end of a shaft with one or even more flutes. Twist drills are often made from solid carbide or High-Speed Steel (HSS). The drill's hardness, wear resistance, and lifespan can be improved by applying a gold-colored coating, such as TiN.

4. Fly Cutters

Fly cutters are considered the best to create a fantastic surface finish.  The clockwise motion of these cutting tools produces a mirror-like finish on the material.

5. Center Spotting Drills

These stocky tools first construct a precise conical hole to avoid the drill bit from drifting during a cutting operation and end up drilling the hole at an incorrect site. Screw clearance holes and counterbores can be drilled with the same tool thanks to multi-function drills that spot and countersink.

6. Reamers

Reamers are mainly utilized to enlarge the existing holes in compliance with the tolerance while providing a superior surface finish. They help you ensure the accuracy of the roundness and diameter of a drilled hole. For reamers to work, a pilot hole of roughly the same diameter as the final product must first be bored.

7. Taps and Thread Mills

Taps are tools used to cut threads into the interior of a material. Yet not every thread is produced by a cutting procedure. By applying pressure, Roll Form taps get inserted into holes, and the surrounding material is shaped to fit them.

Thread mills are similar but can be employed to cut internal or external threads.

Concluding Remarks 

The key to successfully machining products and components is selecting the appropriate CNC tool. Learn how each one functions, and keep in mind the use of the most beneficial ones in your manufacturing facility.

Author Bio


Peter Jacobs is the Senior Director of Marketing at CNC Masters. He is actively involved in manufacturing processes and regularly contributes his insights for various blogs in CNC machining, 3D printing, rapid tooling, injection molding, metal casting, and manufacturing in general.