Choosing a Partner and Getting Results
As experts in small metal cutting parts, Metal Cutting, Inc. specializes in meeting the tightest tolerance requirements of our customers in a wide range of applications, from automotive parts and electronics to medical devices, biotechnology, semiconductors, aerospace, and fiber optics. Metal cutting is a core technology in our business, so we know as much about cutting off as anyone.
So, for your precision manufacturing needs, here are some of our suggestions to help you get the results you want.
Asking About Cut Off Metal Expertise
For small-diameter metal cutting parts, you need a partner who can deliver burr-free, tight tolerances (ideally in microns). Look for vendors who are proficient in cutting parts made from the materials you want to use, such as non-ferrous metals like tungsten and molybdenum, ferrous alloys like stainless steel, the latest nickel- and titanium-based alloys, and other specialty metals.
In addition, the vendor should specialize in high Cpk and Ppk narrow tolerance cutting and have a proven track record of complex metrology, stringent dimensional requirements, and accurate and repeatable results. Depending on the metal part to be cut and the application, don’t hesitate to ask the prospective partner the following questions about their capabilities
- Does the vendor have a proven track record of producing parts that are burr-free and have the kerf you expect?
- What tolerances can the vendor achieve for the length you need? For example, can they produce length tolerances down to 0.001″ (0.025mm) on very short lengths such as 0.008″ (0.20mm)?
- Can it maintain tight tolerances such as ± 0.005 inches (± 0.125 mm) for long lengths, such as cuts over 6.0 feet (2.0 m)?
- Can the bender cut a variety of diameters, for example, from 0.0005 inches to 3.00 inches? (0.0125-75.0 mm) – Can it meet the needs of different part sizes?
- Can you cut the wall of a tube as thin as 0.001″ (0.025 mm) without deforming it?
- Can you cut composite materials and coated metals without deformation or damage?
See Cut Off Metal equipment
Of course, you will want to choose a service provider with the capacity to handle your order volume and supply the quantity of cut off metal parts you need. It’s also wise to use a supplier that has a range of cut-off options, equipment and tools that you can use to process the type of metal you want in the size (or sizes) you need, saving both set-up time and cost.
For example, Metal Cutting has a wide range of in-house machines for the production of cut-to-length metal parts, as well as associated grinding, flapping, polishing, turning, electrical turning and metrology capabilities. Our patented grinding wheels produce a cut finish that is smoother than other cutting methods for the simple reason that the wheels themselves are basically the same as fine polishing wheels. Despite this, they can cut even very hard or dielectric metals, producing an excellent “as-cut” surface finish. This allows us to cut metal parts in all size combinations from thin-walled tubes to hard metals, coated metals, composite metals and everything in between. For pins, sensors and other solid, small-diameter metal parts required in large batches, our in-house EDM process can produce highly repeatable lengths without end deformation, distortion or delamination, and is more economical than many other methods.
When talking to potential partners about machines for cutting metal parts, be sure to ask if the machine has advanced features designed to increase accuracy and customize the process to meet your cutting needs. For example, programmable operating controls provide greater flexibility in production settings and switching speeds. Computerized cutting speeds and feeds, linear in-feed encoding, and other features can go a long way in maintaining machining accuracy and holding tight tolerances.
For many metal parts that are cut in small diameters, the ability to bundle material is also important for process efficiency and cost effectiveness. In the case of tubing, mandrels can be used to assist in cutting the tubing and prevent burring or deformation of the tubing ends. For metal cutting, we manage the tube and cut only the wall of the tube to achieve excellent squareness. It also does not contaminate the ID of the tube due to its unique material handling.