Threading components is an important part of the machining process. Perfectly cut threads are essential for components that have to be bolted together securely. One of the best tools for cutting threads quickly and efficiently is to use a milling machine paired with solid carbide thread mills.
Back in the day, components were threaded using tap and die sets. Your tapping tool would cut internal threads into a predrilled hole while the die tool would cut threads onto the bolt or other male component. These tools are typically hand operated, though machine versions do exist. Luckily thread mills have opened up a much more efficient method of threading components.
Instead of going through this slow and arduous process, CNC technology has introduced a method of creating threads in seconds. Thread milling is a fully automated process that can create perfectly spaced threads using specially designed end mills.
Depending on how you want to cut your threads, there are multiple tool options. Full form thread mills are going to be the fastest option if you need to cut threads. These tools look very similar to traditional thread taps with a row of pointed “teeth” along the cutting surface.
Basically the tool rotates and cuts around the surface that will be threaded. During the duration of the cut, the thread mill travels vertically one thread pitch(the space between threads) in order to create a helical cut. These tools can cut multiple thread sizes as long as the thread pitch is the same. A full form mill can also chamfer while it cuts.
In addition to the full form option, there are also single pitch end mills. These thread mills have an extremely different appearance from the larger full form mills. Instead of having several teeth to cut a full threaded surface in one fell swoop, a single pitch mill has only one “tooth” that cuts the entire length of the thread.
Obviously this process is going to take a little longer, but these tools come with several advantages. A single pitch thread mill can cut threads on asymmetrical components and they can also cut threads with different pitches. Because they have a significantly smaller cutting surface, these thread mills are also ideal for cutting parts that are delicate or have a low stability.
No matter which style of cutter is best suited for your needs, you want to make sure that you are using solid carbide thread mills. Carbide is one of the best tool materials for milling because it is rigid, strong, and it can hold a cutting edge while working at high speeds and temperatures. This is because carbide is a combination of a powdered carbide ceramic and a metal binding material.
Carbide ceramics are significantly stronger and denser than steel, but ceramics are too brittle to make cuts at high speeds. Combining the powdered ceramic with a metal, typically cobalt, helps to create tools that gain the strengths of both materials.
If you want to find some quality solid carbide thread mills, you need to check out the options available at Online Carbide. Online Carbide is an American manufacturer of solid carbide end mills and drill bits. All of their tools are made using high quality tool carbide ground to precise specifications using their advanced CNC grinders. When you visit their website you can find all of their tools direct-from-manufacturer pricing, meaning you can save on the tools your shop needs. If you have any questions about any of Online Carbide’s tools, you can reach out to a member of their team by calling 630-238-1424 or sending an email to [email protected]