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Thread: WHat wheel to use for carbide inserts

  1. #1
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    Default WHat wheel to use for carbide inserts

    For years I have been using a very soft grinding wheel (green) to sharpen my carbides. Now I decided to get another grinding wheel and have a hard time finding what kind of wheel to search for and who carries them.

    All I see is diamond wheels...so I guess that I am way backwards with technology.

    Any pointer on buying a wheel for lathe tool bit sharpening inserts? I mainly do "repair" work in my home shop with sporadic use of carbides when the "scrap" I bough or scrounged from free bees is hard to machine with M2 bits.

    thanks, Wilson

  2. #2
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    Default Wheel

    A diamond is the only good way to go for grinding carbide. A good wheel will last a long time if not abused.

    JRW

  3. #3
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    Yes, a diamond wheel is the only thing that will truly cut carbide. A green wheel will break off carbide grains, but the resulting edge, while usable, is nowhere near as good as one ground with a diamond wheel.
    ----------
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  4. #4
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    I just want to be clear on exactly what kind of carbide tooling it is that you are grinding.

    When you say carbide inserts, does this mean interchangeable solid carbide turning or milling inserts that sit in a pocket of a steel holder? Perhaps (and I hope) you are referring to a brazed carbide tip on a soft steel tool bit.

    If it really is carbide inserts that you are grinding, it would be best if you saved the money you'd be spending on a diamond grinding wheel and just buy a box of new inserts.

  5. #5
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    Default Grinding the tool bit inserts

    Quote Originally Posted by PixMan
    I just want to be clear on exactly what kind of carbide tooling it is that you are grinding.

    When you say carbide inserts, does this mean interchangeable solid carbide turning or milling inserts that sit in a pocket of a steel holder? Perhaps (and I hope) you are referring to a brazed carbide tip on a soft steel tool bit.

    If it really is carbide inserts that you are grinding, it would be best if you saved the money you'd be spending on a diamond grinding wheel and just buy a box of new inserts.

    PixMan: I have a mix of brazed ones that I sometimes have made for specific purpose and I have some commercial inserts for home made insert holder.

    Apart from the different classes of inserts, e.g. cast iron; stainless, carbon steel, I do not know or understand why would be a difference between brazed inserts and ready made indexable.

    Also my experience dates from when I had formerly taken craft courses (called apprenticeship program? at the age of 12 to 18 years old) so at that time and in a third world country (Uruguay) shops did not have much and the only thing I knew was those "green" soft wheels. It has not been until recently that I realized that diamonds are being used a lot in the industry. Of course I am not working for the last 15 years (retired) and even previous to retiring I did not work on the craft. So all together puts me about the point of shop technology from 40+ years ago.

    I even have a box of inserts (given to me) that have never used for lack of the tool holder, but I was never impressed with the kind of finish that I got utilizing carbide bits.
    Maybe is time for me to re-learn and read deep into the utilization of carbide bits.
    Any good source on this site?
    Thanks, Wilson

  6. #6
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    What kind of lathe do you have? What materials are you turning?

    Listen to Pixman! He has helped me save a lot of money!
    How to become a millionaire: Start out with 10 million and take up machining as a hobby!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Black Forest
    What kind of lathe do you have? What materials are you turning?

    Listen to Pixman! He has helped me save a lot of money!
    Black Forest: Definitely I am all ears since my technology is from another era and need to do a lot of catch-up.

    Here is the Clausing 12x 36 I have in Texas where I do most of the "building" and repairs. Have 8" 4 independent jaws & a 3"jaw 6" chucks.



    Then in Ontario-Canada (cottage) I spend from Mar-Nov I just bough this year a milling machine (still in pieces and in an outdoors shed):


    Also bought on an on-line auction this Standard Modern Lathe 11"x20" and have already in the basement in Ontario.


    For several years I have in Ontario also a Harbor Freight Lathe 7x12 that just this year I burnt the thread mill controller utilized for speed control.


    My carbide tools are mainly carbide brazed on plain steel. Some brazed by myself some commercial sources.

    Just today I got a Chuck adapter plate D1-4 to accommodate the 8: independent jaw chuck to the Standard Modern lathe that I purchased without any chuck at all.

    As for material I utilize whatever I can get in scrap yards or I have in my box. Mainly I search for huge bolts (high tensile stuff) and pipes f any dimension I can get, but I use anything from re-bar ends to whatever metal I can get from thrown away equipment. Mainly all steel in the last few years. As soon as I put together my Gingery foundry again I will be making castings from aluminum.
    Wilson

  8. #8
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    Wellll you don't have a machine that can take full advantage of carbide. And there are no carbide "bits" unless you break the tool in little pieces. There are "brazed carbide tools" and "indexable inserted carbide tools". The whole point of indexable tooling is that you can change cutting edges and not lose size, within reason. Sharpening the insert defeats this entirely. In addition you lose the benefit of coatings , chipbreakers, and rake angles that the insert was made with. If you are using carbides to get by with your mystery metals then I would compare what I'm saving to what I'm spending and I think you will find that you are better off with known materials and less cutting tool expense. It appears that you are a skinflint who would cut off his nose to spite his face. If you can afford those machine tools and residences in Canada and Texas then open the wallet and buy the proper tooling and materials.

  9. #9
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    I'll not get quite so blunt as tdmidget, but much of what he wrote rings true.

    Where you say you have some carbide tools "brazed by yourself and some commercial sources", I hope that doesn't mean you've paid someone to braze carbide for you. When the quality brazed carbide tools are made, the steel shank is quickly heated with an electric induction source, the carbide is placed and held on the hot shank with flux, the solder is added and everything cools. The carbide itself is kept from getting excessively hot or from extreme temperature swings that causes thermal cracking.

    The cheap Chinese brazed carbide turning tools and boring bars aren't treated as carefully, and their performance suffers.

    I see one machine there that looks ready to machine parts, and that's the milling machine *if* you have cutting tools. The lathes all appear to be in various states of disrepair or missing vital parts such as drive motors or a toolpost. In the case of the Harbor Freight thing, I can't even see a lathe bed and have no idea what you mean by thread mill controller.

    I suggest a step back and tell me which machine you plan to use. Are you setting any tooling budget, or are you going to keep throwing whatever fell in the door at it? How about a quick change tool post kit for each or one? That might make a good foundation for adding carbide insert tooling or even easier handling for HSS tools.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by PixMan
    I'll not get quite so blunt as tdmidget, but much of what he wrote rings true.

    Where you say you have some carbide tools "brazed by yourself and some commercial sources", I hope that doesn't mean you've paid someone to braze carbide for you. When the quality brazed carbide tools are made, the steel shank is quickly heated with an electric induction source, the carbide is placed and held on the hot shank with flux, the solder is added and everything cools. The carbide itself is kept from getting excessively hot or from extreme temperature swings that causes thermal cracking.

    The cheap Chinese brazed carbide turning tools and boring bars aren't treated as carefully, and their performance suffers.

    I see one machine there that looks ready to machine parts, and that's the milling machine *if* you have cutting tools. The lathes all appear to be in various states of disrepair or missing vital parts such as drive motors or a toolpost. In the case of the Harbor Freight thing, I can't even see a lathe bed and have no idea what you mean by thread mill controller.

    I suggest a step back and tell me which machine you plan to use. Are you setting any tooling budget, or are you going to keep throwing whatever fell in the door at it? How about a quick change tool post kit for each or one? That might make a good foundation for adding carbide insert tooling or even easier handling for HSS tools.
    PixMan: Some of my carbides were commercially done probably 4o years ago when I used to work with TODD shipyard in Brooklyn. They closed shop and we were to take with us all tools we had with us. Others I brazed them myself and I learn that 55+ years ago while in craft courses. We use the acetylene torch with care but never to the point you mention.

    The pictures that I use for the above post were whatever I had in my PC right now. Not fully representative of the present status.
    I have a tool post (do not know the name of this type, but rotates in 8 positions with a 1" slot on each of the four sides and it suit my sporadic utilization of the lathes. I an use it with the Clausing and the Standard Modern lathes. The Mini-lathe (HF) came with he same type but much smaller.
    I have 8' four jaw independent chuck, another 3 jaw 6 inches and the mini lathe one 3 jaw 3 inches.
    I do not have steady rest on any, but all have tail-stock, I have drill chucks for all Morse tapers in he machines, and live centers.
    The mini-lathe came with a small motor/controller but did not have enough power for even a 1/32 cut on 1" steel stock, so I bought an old treadmill and adapted the controller/motor to work with the mini-late. Unfortunately this summer I had them in the basement and 90% humidity somehow made the controller stop working.

    I said before, I never worked on a progressive machine shop, all were very backwards and this was more than 35 years ago (third world country in South America), so the only training was from 1952 to 1958 in a school that did not have enough resources and run by teachers that were already two generations older than me and used to work with whatever they had. Many times we used a file to make tool bits for the machines. Sometimes we forged the carbon steel bars for tool bits before grinding and tempering. Way back at least 65 years.

    The picture of the mill was taken when it went to the auction in the vocational school. I have only some gear cutter tools bought at flea markets (no complete sets), and two or three cutters for the Horizontal bar. DO not have vertical milling head attachment and right now the whole thing is sitting under a temporary shed I built (under the snow I imagine in Ontario) until I can figure out how to get piece by piece in the basement. Also in Ontario I do not have electric power from the utilities, just a 4,500 watt generator that can probably run up to 3 HP motors.
    For the Standard modern lathe I bought a Honeywell VFD for the 3/4 HP motor.

    My goal is to use all this machines and tooling to refurbish and keep running some Heavy Equipment I have and need in Ontario to work on the property leveling terrain, clearing areas, cut firewood for the winter and landscape the area around the house. I use these as support rather as a main purpose as many of the other members in this forum.

    As per budget, I rather spend the money on the main goal of maintaining the heavy equipment running for the outdoors work, and sometimes like this winter I am building a heavy duty wood splitter. I will spend as much money as needed if is not more expensive than having the equipment repaired outside.

    Thanks, Wilson

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