When it comes to milling custom parts, it’s important to have the correct end mills for the job. While many end mills are designed to handle hard materials like steel, these same cutting tools will encounter difficulty when working aluminum. In order to find the Best End Mills For Aluminum, you need to know the unique properties that can make aluminum hard on your mills. Here at Online Carbide, we offer a line of special cutting tools to make working aluminum a simple process.
At Online Carbide we are a US-based manufacturer of high-performance solid carbide cutting tools. We are not importing and reselling cheap end mills from overseas like many of the brands on the market. Instead, we use the same high-quality solid carbide stock and robot fed 5 axis CNC grinders as other industry leaders. Unlike many of the big brands, we do not deal with middlemen or big box stores. Instead, we offer all of our customers factory-direct pricing on all of our cutting tools.
Despite our low prices, we only use top-notch carbide in our tools. No carbide coated or carbide tipped tools in our catalog, only solid cemented tungsten carbide tools. This material helps offer the best high-speed tool performance possible. Unlike pure metal, carbide is able to run at high speed without significant shaking and it maintains its cutting edges for much longer.
When you are dealing with aluminum, edge retention might not seem like a huge deal, but this soft material is deceptively difficult to work with. When you mill into aluminum it cuts easily, but chip evacuation can be an issue. Unlike steel and other metals, aluminum produces extremely fine chips. This nearly powdered aluminum can easily build up at the base of your end mill, potential compacting into a solid mass than can damage the tool, the workpiece, or both.
In order to deal with this issue, special considerations have to be made in order to design the best end mills for aluminum. The most obvious difference in our aluminum mills is that they have three flutes. This design gives these end mills more space to evacuate chips. The 37° helix angle also creates an easier angle for chip evacuation.
The next most important factor on aluminum end mills is the coating. Most end mills for aluminum will have a gold-colored coating on the cutting section of the end mill. This golden coating is a substance called zirconium nitride or ZrN. This golden ceramic coating helps increase the edge retention and insulation of the mill. It’s main function when dealing with aluminum is that it lowers the coefficient of friction on the end mill’s surface. This makes it much easier for chips to move up the flutes and away from your workpiece.
In addition to producing the best end mills for aluminum, we also produce a huge range of other carbide cutting tools. Whether you need a thread mill, a square end mill, or some jobber drills, you can find them on our site. We know that running a shop means having a wide assortment of cutting tools and we are constantly working to expand our inventory. If you need an end mill or drill bit design that we do not carry, we are always happy to discuss custom orders for our clients. If you have any questions about our inventory, feel free to reach out to our team. You can contact us by email at [email protected] or by phone at 630-238-1424.