The Benefit of EDM Process To CNC Machined Industry
Electronic discharge machining is a manufacturing process where electric discharges also known as sparks are removed from a machine through erosion. The two electrodes which are referred to as the tool and the workpiece are exposed to a sequence of fast electrical discharges in the presence of dielectric liquid which separates them so that they don’t make any contact and are subject to an electric voltage. The sparks are expected to erode the workpiece to come up with the desired shape. EDM is also referred to as spark machining, burning, or arc machining.
Below Are Main Three EDM Process In The Industry
Die Sinker EDM
It is also known as cavity EDM and is used to create cavity holes in die applications and tools by submerging the workpiece and electrode into an insulating liquid such as oil and dielectric fluids. They are both connected to a power supply. Die sinker process begins by machining a graphite electrode into the desired cavity.
This method involves making dies from hardened steel by feeding wire from a spoon. It uses a thin wire for an electrode which moves in a controlled pattern causing sparks between the wire and the workpiece.
Hole Drilling EDM
This machine uses a hole-making machine known as hole popper which creates a pilot hole for threading. Hole drilling EDM is designed to create accurate, fast, and deep holes. It can drill an inch deep hole in a minute and is ideal for very hard materials.
What Kind of Material We Can Use The EDM Process In the Industry?
EDM materials need to be electrically conductive. EDM machines are used in molds industries, mold making, and tools. They are used in making prototype and product types in the automobile, aerospace, and electronics industries. These industries have relatively low production quantities.
Why Do We Need to use EDM process?
EDM is ideal for cutting hardened materials with excellent surface finishes. This saves the industry from incurring additional costs on post-processing and surface treatment. Additionally, the EDM process is very accurate, fast, predictable, and repeatable. It requires minimum labor hence saves the company of additional manufacturing costs. Wire EDM has many applications such as cutting strippers, inserts, die buttons, slides, knockouts, and other parts.
Compare EDM to another machined process
EDM process depends on the type of application you intend to use it for. As compared to other machined processes, EDM application is slower but is more predictable, repeatable, and accurate. Moreover, EDM reduces labor and manufacturing costs as it can operate unattended. EDM electrode production runs through the clock with minimum attention from a human.
Light milling application is used as an alternative to EDM for hard metal that requires smooth detail and intricate details because it can follow precise and complex tools with high-speed rates. EDM, on the other hand, is mostly applied at home with low volume operations like in the aerospace industry and medical devices industries.
EDM is used for smaller piece feature sizes which require high accuracy since it does not encounter limitations with L:D when internal radii become smaller like the case in conventional milling. Milling is not helpful in cases where L:D is particularly high as it cannot do the deep cutting required.
When it comes to surfaces that need texturing, milling is the best option since it does not require polishing before texturing. EDM adds another process since surfaces must be polished before texturing.
Compare EDM to Additive Manufacturing
Addictive manufacturing requires you to build on a base plate then separate them. Separating them is very complex, but wire EDM helps in cutting the parts of the base plate.
EDM is used to finish features that require high accuracy and finer finishes which cannot be produced by additive manufacturing.
Is Electrical Discharge Machining Right for You?
If you are looking for an accurate, repeatable, and precise machining process, the EDM process is the best solution. However, if you need a process that will cut quickly cut a lot of parts, EDM is not the best choice.
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