Grinding is proven to offer multiple solutions in machining alloys and always meeting the required finish and tolerance.
Grinding alloys can be quite difficult since they are made of compound elements. Alloys have evolved to meet high-performance requirements. The challenge in machining alloys, though, is that they can easily work-harden at the surface and generate heat. The accumulation of high temperatures interferes with the cutting process and might deform or damage work parts.
The complex compound nature of alloys contributes to the heavy manufacturing of these metals. Additionally, the complex parts of the material often make it difficult for a secure hold in machining. This is why machining alloys and the parts involved are considered very expensive. Thus, the processes involved in grinding alloys also involve other techniques (e.g. infeed and through-feed grinding).
There is continuous progress when it comes to machining materials. This also explains the sudden emergence of centerless grinding in the industry, which is either implemented manually or through CNC automation. Although grinding is often believed to be an expensive machining solution, it is proven to offer multiple solutions in handling alloys and can be customized to meet precise part requirements.
There are common techniques in controlling cutting forces and surface finish, including varying the size of the wheels and their abrasive grains; the controlled gap between wheels; and the constant dressing of abrasive grains.
Variables in the Grinding Process
- Investment – Capital is the first step in any operation. To start, you must consider all the cost-factors such as floor space, machine, part size, and the machining equipment involved.
- Strategy – There are strategies that are best implemented for the success and continuation of the operation. These may include tooling, tool changing, proper positioning, and constant dressing to meet the required finish and tolerance in grinding alloys.
- Environment – The environment is highly important in the process, as the coolant system application will depend on it. This involves the critical limitations and weighing benefits including cleanliness, disposability, and fire precautions.
- Design and tolerances – There are a lot of things to be considered in machining a material, including part geometry, possible coating and the desired surface finish and diameter tolerance. Complex components require more keen attention to avoid the excessive grinding that can lead to the distortion or deformation of parts. The machining process and chosen abrasives can highly influence the surface finish and part tolerance.
- Workholding – Holding and supporting the work-piece is highly critical to ensuring its surface finish. Thus, the proper implementation of tooling and positioning should be monitored in detail so as to comply with the complexity of the parts.
In order to maximize productivity, the technology and grinding methods must always match a specific manufacturing situation. As of today, grinder machines have improved and added more sophisticated features as well as a variety of productivity-boosting systems. This includes automatic loading and process monitoring to aid productivity. High metal removal rates are always achieved with modern grinding techniques, providing the best, most economical way to machine alloy parts.
The Basics of Aluminum Alloy
Aluminum is the most abundant metal in Earth’s crust after silicon and oxygen. It has a silvery-white appearance and contains a lot of valuable mechanical properties. It possesses 60% of the electrical conductivity of copper, with much lower density, making it a lightweight material perfect for aircraft and aerospace construction.
Pure aluminum is soft and ductile, but it can be strengthened when it is alloyed with other elements like magnesium, copper, and silicon. Such alloys possess better corrosion resisting properties, with a protective oxide coating that is achieved and enhanced through the process of anodization. Their lightweight and non-toxic mechanical properties enable them to be easily machined and cast. One good thing about aluminum is that it is recyclable, which can save considerable amounts of energy. They only need to undergo a melting process in order for them to be reused.
Aluminum alloys have low density, therefore, they are lightweight which is one of the key factors to consider in constructing an aircraft and its vital parts. Other important properties they possess are malleability, high strength, easy machining, good electrical and thermal conductivity, and excellent corrosion resistance.
Aluminum in the Aviation Industry
80 percent of commercial transport aircraft frames are made up of aluminum. This alloy is the top choice for the construction of aircraft and parts like wings and fuselage. Most navy aircraft are mainly made of fabricated aluminum. The focus on aluminum casting technology is continuing to earn recognition with its countless advantages in forming complex parts for aircraft structure. With a low manufacturing cost, Aluminum Alloy is the top choice for incorporating innovative and complicated design concepts in the aviation industry.
Let Advance Grinding Services be your tool in understanding and choosing the correct material for your manufacturing needs. With partners in our sector, you can submit a request for 3 quotes today!