Simple, fast, and consistent results every time!

Cutting tool edge-prep (honing) and polishing processes consist of several quick and easy steps:

  • Select tool to process – end-mills, drills, taps, carbide inserts, etc.
    Load tools on the tool holders – simple loading using bayonet or set screw collets
  • Place holders in machine – simple one spring release mechanism
  • Select correct process media – edge-prep or polishing media
  • Program process time and press start
  • Unload tools – be done in as little as 2 minutes! (depending on material)
  • Inspect with our non-destructive metrology equipment (optional).

Cutting Tool Edge-Prep/Honing

Cutting tool edge-prep, or honing, involves radiusing the tool edge to reduce its sharpness. Drag finishing technology has proven to be one of the most cost-effective and time-efficient methods of accomplishing edge-prep. Results have shown that drag finishing of tools can extend their life by as much as 300%, while delivering short process times.

In this process, multiple tools are fixtured into the tool holders to ensure proper introduction into the process media. The operator sets the machine parameters, such as direction of rotation, speed, and process time before starting the cycle. At the end of the cycle, parts are removed from the fixtures, and the next batch.

                                                    Cutting tool as ground – sharp

Example of cutting tool after honing

 Cutting tool after honing

The ideal degree of honing varies based on the tool’s material and the intended end use of the tool. Varying degrees of hone can also be obtained by proper selection of process media. For more detailed information, refer to the Process Media“, and Technical Publication sections of our site. You may also click the link below for more information.

Cutting Tool Polishing

Drag finishing technology has also proven to be another cost-effective and time-efficient method for polishing cutting tools. Results have shown that by properly polishing a cutting tool, whether coated or non-coated, allows the tool to run cooler, allowing for faster feed rates, thus reduced cycle times for the end user. Additional benefits include better chip removal due to the highly polished “swarfs”.

Tool prep for cutting before a coating process

Prep before coating          

Cutting Tool, Polished after Coating

          Polish after coating

As with edge-prep procedures in drag finishing, proper media selection, method of introduction of the part into the process media, and process parameters (speed, direction, cycle time) all play an important part in the end results. Proper media selection depends on the material of the tool, and whether or not the tool is coated. Testing has proven that polishing coated tools helps to remove the tiny droplets of coating that are inherent in the coating process. Removing the droplets reduces friction, as well as the possibility of chipping. Removing coating droplets forms cavities which help to provide a reservoir for cutting fluids used in the machining process, resulting in better outcomes. For more detailed information, refer to the “Process Media“, and “Technical Publications ” sections of our site. You may also click the link below for more information.

Carbide Inserts: Edge-Prep/Honing

Cutting tool inserts, such as the carbide inserts shown below, are ideal candidates for edge honing by drag finisher. Multiple inserts easily fit on each simple fixture. Our work holders also accept multiple fixtures, allowing you to process large batches of inserts at once.

Example of a Carbide Insert Cutting Tool

Cutting Tool Metrology

Bel Air offers non-destructive cutting tool metrology for measuring the surfaces and edges of your tools. This equipment is available by itself, or as part of our turn-key cutting tool edge-prep and polishing systems.

Cutting Tool Metrology used to measure part surfaces