Parting-off on stainless parts

Stewart Buchanan Gauges is successfully parting-off up to 4000 stainless steel components with a single insert – a total cutting time of nine hours – using ACT’s Microcut tooling. The Glasgow-based company, which manufactures pressure gauges and valves for the oil industry, installed a Star RNC-16 sliding head machine earlier this year in order to automate production and allow overnight operation. One application requires 4.95mm diameter bar in 316L stainless steel to be parted off after machining, which is now performed with Microcut RHSS-1010 tooling. The toolholder has a 10mm square shank, and the inserts used are 1.1mm wide and produced from TiN-coated ASP. 2060 high-speed steel, to ensure successful performance on difficult materials at low surface speeds. They are held in a dove-tail recess in the toolholder and against a fixed back-stop. On the first production run the company parted-off 2500 components in six hours with a single insert – a cutting time of nearly six hours. More recently one insert parted-off 4000 components, achieving a cutting life of over nine hours.
Each cut takes about eight seconds and includes forming a 450 chamfer. A high-quality surface finish is achieved, so no secondary operation is needed.

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