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Articles About EDM
Over the past decade, the wire electrical discharge machine (EDM) has become an increasingly important tool for machining non-standard shapes. It has even been used to cut gears and gear cavities for plastic molds. While generally accepted as a quick and versatile method for cutting spur gears, the EDM gear has lacked the precision of a mechanically machined or ground gear. We suspected that many of the errors associated with these gears were caused by inexact setup procedures, poor tool path control and improper cutting parameters. We decided to test the potential for the wire EDM to make the most accurate gear possible.
The capabilities and limitations of manufacturing gears by conventional means are well-known and thoroughly documented. In the search to enhance or otherwise improve the gear-making process, manufacturing methods have extended beyond chip-cutting - hobbing, broaching, shaping, shaving, grinding, etc. and their inherent limitations based on cutting selection and speed, feed rates, chip thickness per tooth, cutting pressure, cutter deflection, chatter, surface finish, material hardness, machine rigidity, tooling, setup and other items.
Technology emphasizes high accuracies and improved surface finishes.
the gear industry is awash in manufacturing technologies that promise to eliminate waste by producing gears in near-net shape, cut production and labor costs and permit gear designers greater freedom in materials. These methods can be broken down into the following categories: alternative ways to cut, alternative ways to form and new, exotic alternatives. Some are new, some are old and some are simply amazing.
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The cutting tool is basic to gear manufacturing. Whether it's a hob, broach, shaper cutter or EDM wire, not much gets done without it. And the mission of the tool remains the same as always; removing material as quickly, accurately and cost-effectively as possible. Progress in the field tends to be evolutionary, coming gradually over time, but recently, a confluence of emerging technologies and new customer demands has caused significant changes in the machines, the materials and the coatings that make cutting tools.
A recent U.S. Army Tank-Automotive Command project, conducted by Battelle's Columbus Laboratories. successfully developed the methodology of CAD/CAM procedures for manufacturing dies (via EDM) for forging spiral bevel gears. Further, it demonstrated that precision forging of spiral bevel gears is a practical production technique. Although no detailed economic evaluation was made in this study, it is expected that precision forging offers an attractive alternative to the costly gear cutting operations for producing spiral bevel gears.
On many occasions a reasonably approximate, but not exact, representation of an involute tooth profile is required. Applications include making drawings, especially at enlarged scale, and laser or EDM cutting of gears, molds, and dies used to produce gears. When numerical control (NC) techniques are to be used, a simple way to model an involute can make the NC programming task much easier.
News Items About EDM
1 Diehl Introduces EDM Blanks (November 27, 2012)
Diehl Steel has introduced Ready-Block EDM Blanks for EDM applications. The ready-to-use blanks are pre-hardened, squared and ground at D... Read News
2 FA Advance Wire EDM Series Extracts Data Directly Within Control (February 13, 2008)
MC Machinery Systems, Inc. introduces its new FA Advance Wire EDM series featuring an M700 series control. The Windows-based system with ... Read News
3 MC Machinery Offers New Wire EDM Technology (May 4, 2012)
MC Machinery Systems, Inc., a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Corp., unveiled its completely revamped wire EDM line, featuring Cylindrical Drive... Read News