Reply To: Lionkev's Aluminum Attempts

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Kevin Lopez

Welp…lets just say the success was short lived. Just tried doing some real cuts in some very thick aluminum plate, 3/8 inch. That is practically the length of the entire flute of my end mill I use. It went about as bad as you could imagine. 🙁 I lost 3 brave end mills today, 12 dollars just grew legs and walked out of my garage.

Okay, for real parts and not just pockets, the story changes. Just letting everyone know out there, if you plan to contour a shape, do NOT do it as a slot all the way around. You can get away with this if your part is rather thin, I would say 6mm or less in thickness. Otherwise you got what I just got, a mess. What happened was eventually the slot got so deep that the chips were pretty much stuck even with a vacuum. The bit started recutting and things got hot quick. Eventually it got so bad that the whole end mill got clogged with molten aluminum. Everything started chattering and I thought my the dw660 was gonna explode lol.

I also get this terrible chatter that actually broke 2 of my bits at VERY specific parts of my adaptive pockets like in the video I posted. It is so disappointing because everything sounds like its going really well with aggressive settings and then all of a sudden, this horrible chatter begins and the bit breaks. It’s very important to note that this happens when the cutter is NOT removing much material (for example, a light and slow finish).

That really bugs me, I am not sure what to do here. Dui is right in saying that the mpcnc for aluminum is sensitive. At this point I feel I am back to square one 🙁 Nothing seems to have gotten the results I wanted quite yet. The biggest problem for me is that chatter I said earlier. I will upload a video of it if I can’t solve it.

What I am going to do now is
1. move up my workpiece even further to the point where the bottom of the z conduit almost falls out.
2. Try to get some air blast going. Seriously. The chips are so nice but they just get recut cause I can’t get them out of the way.
4. Slot using trochoidal which in my opinion doesn’t make much sense but worth a shot
3. Praise our lord Ryan Zellars