Spark Erosion machining is a method used when machining challenging pieces with intricate detail. The process involves both the workpiece and the tool being connected to a direct current; this provides a constant spark between the two.
Then area where the spark contacts the surface of the workpiece, is heated to an extremely high temperature . The molten metal on the surface of the workpiece evaporates creating a minute crater. Continual discharge creates multiple craters, constantly eroding the workpiece to the desired finish.
The workpeice and the electrode are divided by a gap which is occupied by a synthetic insulating fluid. The liquid allows for eroded debris to be washed away from the work area. The synthetic fluid is used to control the temperature of the process, without it a thermal shock would result, by eliminating heat to the surrounding the process no distortion or change in temper takes place.
The process is suited for manufacturing intricate or short run parts and it can be used for refurbishing otherwise scrapped parts
Spark and Wire Erosion are two different Electrical Discharge Machining (EDM) processes, which we use on a daily basis.
Electrical discharge machining is a machining technique principally used for hard metals and metals that are difficult to machine using traditional methods. EDM normally operates with materials that are electrically conductive. EDM is designed to erode (remove) intricate depressions or contours from pre-hardened steel negating the requirement for heat treatment to soften and re-harden the steel. We use this method on many different types of metals and alloys, such as Monel, Titanium, Tool Steel, Tungsten Carbide, Tantalum, Super Duplex and Inconel.
EDM machines work to very tight tolerances, imagine a human hair.
Now imagine something 20 times finer. That's four microns... and the tolerance routinely achieved by WES Hardmetal in fashioning some of the hardest metals on the planet.
Some of the advantages of EDM include machining of:
Intricate detail that would be difficult to machine with traditional cutting tools
Extremely close tolerances on some of the world’s hardest materials
Allows the workpiece to be very small, compared to traditional cutting tools that can damage a workpiece due to excess pressure
There is no direct contact between tool and work piece. Therefore delicate sections and weak materials can be machined without any distortion.
A good surface finish can be obtained.
Very fine holes can be easily drilled.
Click here our brochure page on our new machines, the AgieCharmilles wire-cut 20P and 30P.
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