View Full Version : Putnam end mills

05-05-2006, 01:31 AM
How good are the Putnam brand end mills?

05-05-2006, 06:42 AM
IMHO, Putnam makes good mill's. I order Putnam's all the time when I have a project, if the order is just for stock, I'll take a chance and order the cheaper MSC "import" mill's.

Just for example, in producing one of my standard parts I kept track of parts per mill, for the Putnams Vs the MSC "inport" catagory of mill's.
The Putnam's finished 10 parts before needing replacement, the last batch of MSC "import" mill's I got were Chinese and only finished 4 parts each.
If you'r lucky enough to get other than Chinese made, when buying the "import" brand from MSC, you'll be ahead of the game.
The S. African, Polish, Bosnian and other produced mill's will give much closer to the same life as the Putnams, but it's luck of the draw and you never know what you'r going to get before they arive.


05-05-2006, 08:58 AM
I second the Putnam mills,good mills for the money.

The big difference between Putnam and the other brands is grind quality,Putnam mills and the better imports are ground much finer than the China,the cutting edges will nearly draw blood when you touch them.As with any cutting tool the sharper it is from the begining the longer it will last.

MSC sometimes you can pick out a few different numbers for the same item(import,domestic,namebrand)and ask the country of origin when you order.

As mentioned already the Polish and Bosnian mills are good and also Excello mills made in Spain,those are nearly on a parr with Putnam IMHO

On the other hand you could buy OSG and wonder how you ever lived without them before:D

05-05-2006, 10:45 AM
Yes they are good quality, but unlike others I have had good luck with the Enco brand from China, lately I only buy carbide end mills mostly "Atrax" from Enco as they are usually on sale and carbide works better on Aluminum as it does not seem to weld onto like HSS & Alum. I also machine a lot of plastics
and they eat up the HSS so again it,s carbide for me.
I recently bought from Travers a 45 deg dovetail cutter (using it to undercut a sharp corner for relief) and it was made in Japan.


05-05-2006, 11:23 AM
Thanks for the information.

05-06-2006, 12:56 AM
I had a few and they were very good quality. As for the poorer quality import mills, the courseness of the grind on the cutting edge will cause them to dull prematurely. As I learned, while working at the tool and die plant, you can make them cut better and last longer if you will take a fine stone to the cutting edge and take the unevenness of the edge off. If it feels like a fine seration on the edge it will not last. Believe it or not, it works.

Jim (KB4IVH)

05-06-2006, 10:38 AM
I'll second that, I'll hand diamond hone some of the HSS Chinese mill's and that will improve their service somewhat.

I was very disappointed with the last batch of import mill's I got from MSC.
I was expecting the Excello or S. African mill's and recieved Chinese made instead.
They were "import" catagory, tin coated corrugated roughers and some tin coated, 4f, finishers, in 1/2, 5/8 & 3/4"
Apon first inspection they looked decent and the edges looked better than the typical Chinese HSS ones, but they quickly broke down and chipped away in use.
Also the tin coating looked different than i'm used to seeing, it was a darker and duller gold.
They only gave about 1/3 the life I was accustomed to getting and a call to the MSC service dept. got me some credit, but only on about 1/4 of what I originally bought. So it was still a loosing proposition.