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EDM Hole-burner-thing mounted on BP

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  • EDM Hole-burner-thing mounted on BP

    Went to look at an EDM-contraption today. It was under power, they showed me how it all works. More or less it uses a graphite electrode, a jet of fluid and a bunch of control settings to burn holes in small pieces of work.

    Guy claims it can be used to do EDM-milling too provided you don't get too aggressive with it.

    I am a totally blank page when it comes to EDM. I know what it is, I know kinda how it works, but when I worked in machine-shops it was considered black-art arcane-magic stuff and no one ever bothered to explain it other than "GET AWAY FROM THAT!"


    Anyone have any experience with these graphite electrode hole-poppers? CAN they be used to do milling or is he just trying to sell me a fancy electric drill?


    Might be worth the price to acquire and learn if that's the case.
    This product has been determined by the state of California to cause permanent irreversible death. This statement may or may not be recognized as valid by all states.
    Heirs of an old war/that's what we've become Inheriting troubles I'm mentally numb
    Plastic Operators Dot Com

  • #2
    Village Press sells a book on building your own EDM. I built one. It works, but I haven't had much opportunity to use it.

    Burned a "9" shaped hole in a detail, made the electrode out of brass.
    Weston Bye - Author, The Mechatronist column, Digital Machinist magazine
    ~Practitioner of the Electromechanical Arts~

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    • #3
      Well I am gradually ramping up my injection molding concern... not at the point where I can build world-class molds (that'll never happen) but I have a couple ideas in mind.

      I was told that you can shape the electrode, and burn an exact image into a chunk of steel. If that's the case, I could make "mini-figures" for the Role Playing Game market. THEY don't have to hold a three digit tolerance, they just have to look nice.

      I guess what I need is a good source of information on what this process can do for me. Even if this machine gets away there will be others.
      This product has been determined by the state of California to cause permanent irreversible death. This statement may or may not be recognized as valid by all states.
      Heirs of an old war/that's what we've become Inheriting troubles I'm mentally numb
      Plastic Operators Dot Com

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      • #4
        I saw one in a shop, but it wasn't in action. It did look neat.

        I am saving some big capacitors for making one but I'm far too busy with other things now.

        If you do make one, please share pictures.
        Paul A.
        SE Texas

        Make it fit.
        You can't win and there is a penalty for trying!

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        • #5
          This is a fully self contained unit with a name badge and everything. Charmian I think? I forgot.

          It's mounted on an old BP body, they took the mill-head off and mounted the EDM contraption on here.
          This product has been determined by the state of California to cause permanent irreversible death. This statement may or may not be recognized as valid by all states.
          Heirs of an old war/that's what we've become Inheriting troubles I'm mentally numb
          Plastic Operators Dot Com

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          • #6
            I have run ram type EDM's alot, in the 1000's of hours. If this machine does not have the ability to pulse you will have problems. Hole poppers lack a lot of the fine controls that make EDM work well. They are designed for simple round trodes, usually using EDM drills for thru flushing. If you get a hold of a drawing or photo of the power supply showing the controls I can tell you for sure if it will work for small trodes.
            It will need to have a amp control of some kind (15 amp minimum power output), on time and off time controls, gap control and an electric or hydraulic pulsing head with a speed control and a +/- polarity switch. It will need some sort of flushing system , water or dielectric fluid. There may be other controls but these are imperative.
            Last edited by Mcruff; 04-20-2010, 02:33 PM.

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            • #7
              Going on memory... The power supply is 200 amp he kept mentioning that because apparently it matters... it had a CRTfor on-off time (he explained how that works, sort of), the head moves up and down via a servo, controlled by the PLC, and it does have a polarity switch.

              As for the fluid system... two hoses feed two flexible jets that gush fluid at the electrode gap. The fluid washes down off the fixture-table and is collected by two hoses that drain into the fluid unit.

              The entire fixture-table is mounted on the BP table and takes up quite a bit of room.... It does have a plastic enclosure, he said that's used if you need to submerge the work for "certain operations."

              Everything is controlled by that PLC/CRT thing except for the polarity, which is a bit selector switch.


              Does this help?
              This product has been determined by the state of California to cause permanent irreversible death. This statement may or may not be recognized as valid by all states.
              Heirs of an old war/that's what we've become Inheriting troubles I'm mentally numb
              Plastic Operators Dot Com

              Comment


              • #8
                It sounds like you have a form of die sinking EDM, at first I thought it may be a Tap Disintegrator, the technique is similar but the method is quite a bit different between the two.
                EDM is by high voltage DC and spark erosion by constantly maintaining a small arc gap between work and electrode with typically some kind of servo action that measures the voltage rise & collapse.
                The Tap Disintegrator looks the same but uses very low voltage, high current AC and the electrode is crudely advanced into the work with a simple 60hz vibrating head.
                M.
                Last edited by MaxHeadRoom; 04-20-2010, 03:11 PM.

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                • #9
                  note

                  I think its called a elocks for burning out taps

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Ron Davy
                    I think its called a elocks for burning out taps
                    elocks ? If you mean Elox they build Die sinker EDM's
                    A principle maker of Tap disintegrators is Electro-Arc.
                    M.
                    Last edited by MaxHeadRoom; 04-20-2010, 04:31 PM.

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                    • #11
                      They are still in business, US distributor here: http://www.charmillesus.com/products/edm/index.cfm

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by MaxHeadRoom
                        elocks ? If you mean Elox they build Die sinker EDM's
                        A principle maker of Tap disintegrators is Electro-Arc.
                        M.
                        Elox also built tap burners,I have one.
                        I just need one more tool,just one!

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Liger Zero
                          Going on memory... The power supply is 200 amp he kept mentioning that because apparently it matters... it had a CRTfor on-off time (he explained how that works, sort of), the head moves up and down via a servo, controlled by the PLC, and it does have a polarity switch.

                          As for the fluid system... two hoses feed two flexible jets that gush fluid at the electrode gap. The fluid washes down off the fixture-table and is collected by two hoses that drain into the fluid unit.

                          The entire fixture-table is mounted on the BP table and takes up quite a bit of room.... It does have a plastic enclosure, he said that's used if you need to submerge the work for "certain operations."

                          Everything is controlled by that PLC/CRT thing except for the polarity, which is a bit selector switch.


                          Does this help?
                          It's more of a tap burner,maybe odd shaped hole machine more than a die sinker.I had a similar unit made by Excello of milling machine fame.

                          It was basically a knee mill frame with an EDM head in place of the mill head.Mine came with a seperate cabinet on wheels for the electronics.All analog controls,heavy DC current.It was still just a tap burner,but the knee mill table was in great shape,that's why I bought it to make it back into a mill.Ended up selling the control in pieces and scrapping the knee mill base in parts.

                          Bottom line it ain't a real EDM and it ain't worth much.
                          I just need one more tool,just one!

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by wierdscience
                            Elox also built tap burners,I have one.
                            I wasn't aware of their disintegrators, but I believe they are principally know for their Die sinkers, at least this is the models I have come across so far.
                            M.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by MaxHeadRoom
                              I wasn't aware of their disintegrators, but I believe they are principally know for their Die sinkers, at least this is the models I have come across so far.
                              M.
                              Yes,they did make some nice sinkers,AFAIK they made both the tap burners and die sinkers and where later bought out/sold to/merged with Charmilles which is still very much alive.

                              I had a chance a year ago to buy a Charmilles sinker,like new with pallets of filters,boxes of carbon and a several sets of 3R tooling.Could have got it for less than $1,000,but I didn't need another hobby.
                              I just need one more tool,just one!

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