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best mothod for slotting aluminum

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  • best mothod for slotting aluminum

    what is the best method for slotting aluminum? the slot size is about .20, the depth is about .75 and 3 inches wide.
    from what i read:
    use a smalled size end mill first
    use 2 flute
    cutting fluid

    should i plunge the end mill all the way down and then cut across or take smaller cut and work my way down?

    thanks

  • #2
    For a slot that narrow (.2 inches) you'd have to use a 3/16 diameter endmill. I don't know if the length of the flutes is enough to allow the 3/4 inch depth. I seriously doubt you could plunge it to full depth, but if you could it would probably break right away as you moved the workpiece sideways to cut the slot. I'd be doing that in several passes, making sure that the slot is kept clear of cuttings.
    I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

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    • #3
      You cannot plunge to .75" depth with a 3/16" end mill and not have problems.

      If you plunge .5-1 diameter and machine to size, maybe.

      What are the tolerances? Makes a big difference.

      I prefer a high air flow mist coolant to remove the chips.

      Can a 3/16 slitting saw be used?

      Dave

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      • #4
        Or at least the majority of material removed by a 3/16 slitting saw and the corners cleaned up with an endmill?

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        • #5
          Almost always a good idea to use the largest possible cutter, in this case it may be a 3/16" and you will need a long length version, carbide is king in my opinion. 2 flute or better yet a 3 flute aluminum cutting.

          Do not know the RPM limits of your equipment but presuming it is not a router (which I have no experience cutting metal with) run the rpm as fast as it will go.

          Take multiple shallow depths of cut and not one single .750 depth of cut.

          As far as feed and depth of cut goes, there are a lot of variables I do not know, start slow and shallow and increase as seems appropriate.

          I avoid plunging like the plague, it just usually sounds horrible, if you can ramp on or plunge into a predrilled hole and move from there, however, plunging is a very common practice.

          Definitely keep the chips out of the way with flood or air blast, an aluminum cutting end mill will help here.


          Ken

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          • #6
            Make sure to use a center cutting end mill.

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            • #7
              i'm using a center cut. i'll do more on removing the chips.

              thanks for all the replied.

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