View Full Version : indexable end mill

05-01-2006, 12:58 AM
What kind of life should I expect with a 1" diameter indexable end mill with US made inserts compared to US made (Atrax & Regal) 1/2" coated 4 flute end mill?

05-01-2006, 01:04 AM
Now lifespan depends on how a tool is used.

05-01-2006, 02:51 AM
JPR...kind of hard to answer that.
I can tell you that I use a 2" indexable end mill in my lil' mill.
I use it more than any other cutter.
The cheapie (positive rake)inserts are exactly that. Cost $18 to load it.
They are useless for any steel.
However...load it up with (yikes) $67 worth of Kennametal inserts(what they cost locally) and it's a different animal. Not sure exactly but I think I get about 10 times the life out of the Kenna inserts. And yes, I could buy them cheap off Ebay...I always seem to miss out on this particular insert size.
With the good inserts it'll eat welds and other hard metals for breakfast.
I do try to avoid the first pass on really dirty metal that I drag home from the dump lol
I either grind it off or use one of the many used Clarkson endmills I got from Ebay.

05-01-2006, 04:17 PM
Russ, I was looking at the Kennametal TPG-321/2 inserts. Do you recommend KC730 or KC850 for general use?

05-01-2006, 05:42 PM
John, I think I use the 850's(not 100% sure). Not because I know any better...it's the only insert they stock here so I started using it.
The only thing I've found is the positive inserts are a bit fragile and of course you only get to use three corners instead of six or more with the negative inserts.
Still well worth the money IMO.
I use this thing for probably 75% of my work. I probably break a few rules when I use it but it does such a nice job that I tend to use it anytime I can.
I'd also like to get a 1" dia as well for the times when the 2" just won't fit or whatever.

05-01-2006, 05:45 PM

What brand indexible end mill are you using, and would you recommend it?
I'm assuming it takes TPG type inserts, correct?


Paul T.

05-01-2006, 09:14 PM
Paul, this is one of the generic off shore 2"/R-8 endmills. This one was made in Taiwan but the others look the same to me. Yes it uses TPG inserts (three).

05-02-2006, 01:04 AM
Russ has it right,the KC850 is what I use most,it stands up to high impact and interrupted cuts well.

The whole trick to endmill life either hss,cobalt or carbide insert is not cutting back through chips which dulls the edges quickly.

If you want a high quality insert endmill without paying a fortune check out the Dolfa line from Toolmex,made in Poland and very reasonable.A 2 insert,1-1/4" wide 3/4" shank endmill set me back $38.00,but man has it removed some metal.

05-02-2006, 01:12 AM
They have gone up a bit,but still reasonable,


05-02-2006, 04:15 AM
Cost might be an issue, but the helical insert cutters from Iscar, and others will outlast a TPG insert cutter probably 10 to 1. Probably cheaper in the long run. Positive rake and the REALLY work, tough too.

05-02-2006, 02:39 PM
B-Dipper, do you have a model number or part number for one of these Iscar mills?


Paul T.

05-02-2006, 03:28 PM
Paul, I found them in my KBC Canada catalog.
They are pricey lil' devils.
Eg...Helimill E90A .500 dia, uses one insert, cost $205 Cnd for the tool, $11 to $17 per insert depending what you want.
2" cutter like I have is $460 Cnd...ouch! I think mine was on sale for $65 Cnd.
Heliquad E90X .500 (uses one inset also) $195 Cnd. Inserts $11 to $14 ea.
Pretty neat looking endmill actually. They probably work very well with lower powered machines.
You can also get the inserts with wipers just in case it rains :D

05-02-2006, 11:53 PM
Cost might be an issue, but the helical insert cutters from Iscar, and others will outlast a TPG insert cutter probably 10 to 1. Probably cheaper in the long run. Positive rake and the REALLY work, tough too.
Wish I had known, I just passed on a 1" Iscar, I figured the inserts would be too expensive and too hard to find. :(

Regarding the grades, someone else found this on Kennametal's site:
Excellent thermal and mechnical shock resistance makes grade KC850 ideally suited for difficult application with interruption. Consider using grade KC935 for lighter cuts.

KC730, provides an unusally good combination of properties for machining difficult-to-machine materials and aluminum.

05-03-2006, 05:08 AM
Another thing to consider on say, a 1" Iscar "heli" style end mill. They offer one that uses three small inserts, and one that uses two large inserts. The large inserts just plain last longer. Plus, the two corners that aren't used in the end mill can be used in a lead angle face mill..."free" inserts! Unless you need a square shoulder, a lead angle face mill cuts better too.