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Thread: End Mills

  1. #1
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    End Mills

    Hi. Looking for a simple explanation on the different end mills. eg.
    four flute, six flute, etc. also roughing or finishing mills. I also see some can plunge drill.
    I"m looking for something very basic for a farm shop. would appreciate any information
    on where to start. should I look for carbide or HSS good enough?
    Thank"s for any replies.

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  3. #2
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    Re: End Mills

    HSS for the most part, will you be cutting flame cut parts? If so get 1 carbide insert cutter for that only. And I would suggest 4 flute for most applications, roughing if you don't care about finish quality. But roughing end mills take a specific set of tools to resharpen, whereas you will be able to "farm" out the resharps for the others easily.

    As a machinist I personally only own 4 indexable end mills. Because most of what I cut is me cutting virgin material. If it has been flame cut then I break those out and use them.



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  5. #3
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    Re: End Mills

    If I may hijack a bit,are there any end mills good for boring holes versus using your typical tapered drill bit?thanks

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  6. #4
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    Re: End Mills

    Yes. I plunge/center cut with an end mill in a lathes tail stock.

  7. #5
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    Re: End Mills

    I pilot, plunge, then bore as needed.

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  8. #6
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    Re: End Mills

    But some end mills have a dead center which will not let you plunge drill.
    CG

  9. #7
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    Re: End Mills

    I use simple low cost end mills.
    There lot of end mills option most just sale man tricks.

    Dave

    Quote Originally Posted by Josey View Post
    Hi. Looking for a simple explanation on the different end mills. eg.
    four flute, six flute, etc. also roughing or finishing mills. I also see some can plunge drill.
    I"m looking for something very basic for a farm shop. would appreciate any information
    on where to start. should I look for carbide or HSS good enough?
    Thank"s for any replies.

  10. Likes tapwelder, Josey liked this post
  11. #8
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    Re: End Mills

    Thanks guys

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    Re: End Mills

    Quote Originally Posted by dusterdude View Post
    If I may hijack a bit,are there any end mills good for boring holes versus using your typical tapered drill bit?thanks

    Sent from my LM-X420 using Tapatalk
    A center cutting end mill makes a lousy drill, believe me. It can be done,, and I do it, but it's slow,, and hard on the machine and the mill. Center cutting end mills are really made for plunge cutting around a periphery, not drilling. Better to drill a pilot hole, then use a mill to cut the slot. They are hand though, for less than full penetrating slots.

    When using an end mill to actually make the hole for the beginning of a slot, it's wise to use a regular end mill holder that's made for use with end mills having a Weldon flat. Collets do not do a good job holding mills when plunging. Maybe the fancier collets will, but I've heard of some parts getting ruined because an end mill moved in the collet.

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    Re: End Mills

    Overall...............I find that a roughing mill is the best all around tool. I only use finish mills for cutting keyways, and important surfaces where fit, or friction force, matters when the part's in use. Carbide is the best. Lasts forever if you take care of them.

    Depending on your machine power, buy the smallest diameter end mill that you can live with. Small end mills soak up less power. You'll figure out the optimal depth of cut, and peripheral cut, after using them for a while. And, when you wreck the smaller end mill, it's less painful on the wallet

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  15. #11
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    Re: End Mills

    2 flutes for lighter cuts, softer material, higher cutting speeds Surface Feet per Minute, aluminum, brass,
    4 or more flutes steels and finer finish
    There are HSS, Cobalt, TI-Nitride coated, and carbide, just like drill bits, the harder the material the better tool you need, cobalt will stand more heat than HSS
    Some are center cut, but not designed to drill holes
    I like to use a stone to put a small (.010) raidus on the tips
    Flame cut and I would always clean up with a inserted carbide tool
    Use coolant to remove the generated heat, air misters are great for this.

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  17. #12
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    Re: End Mills

    Check out cme tools they have a large selection of USA and China endmills at pretty good prices hertel is a pretty good brand that isn't super expensive on eBay also if you're on a budget and have to buy Chinese and can wait a bit buy endmills straight from china on eBay they'll take a 2 weeks to 2-3 months to get here but you'll pay half or less than resellers that are selling you the exact same bits they have in stock here like for instance I bought 5 1/4 endmills for like 89 cents a piece vs the same bits here from a reseller for 7 bucks each the thing you have to watch for is that they're actually imperial sizes cause some seller will list like 1/2 then send 12 mm I've got some for free from places that list imperial than send the closest metric size also if you gotta buy from china then you may as well buy direct and not pay a middle man they may not look as nice and come covered in grinding grit but all I've got have cut fine you can save a lot especially on carbide buying regrinds lots of places that run cnc or don't wanna waste labor having someone regrinding bits sell dull bits to places that sharpen them and sell them I've saved a bunch on expensive carbide bits that were regrinds also it may be worth it to buy one of those cheap 75- 100 dollar endmill assortments like the set harbor freight sells just to have a bunch of sizes then once you see what you use the most buy better bits in that size and lastly you didn't post your machine but if it anything smaller get yourself some roughing endmills you can remove a lot of material faster on small machines with roughers 1/4 3/8 1/2 and 1 inch should cover you in most stuff cutoff what you can then use a rougher for the bulk and finish with a regular endmill 👍👍👍 if you have an a machine that uses R8 collets you'll have to buy a holder for 1 inch shanks

  18. #13
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    Re: End Mills

    Quote Originally Posted by umahunter View Post
    Check out cme tools they have a large selection of USA and China endmills at pretty good prices hertel is a pretty good brand that isn't super expensive on eBay also if you're on a budget and have to buy Chinese and can wait a bit buy endmills straight from china on eBay they'll take a 2 weeks to 2-3 months to get here but you'll pay half or less than resellers that are selling you the exact same bits they have in stock here like for instance I bought 5 1/4 endmills for like 89 cents a piece vs the same bits here from a reseller for 7 bucks each the thing you have to watch for is that they're actually imperial sizes cause some seller will list like 1/2 then send 12 mm I've got some for free from places that list imperial than send the closest metric size also if you gotta buy from china then you may as well buy direct and not pay a middle man they may not look as nice and come covered in grinding grit but all I've got have cut fine you can save a lot especially on carbide buying regrinds lots of places that run cnc or don't wanna waste labor having someone regrinding bits sell dull bits to places that sharpen them and sell them I've saved a bunch on expensive carbide bits that were regrinds also it may be worth it to buy one of those cheap 75- 100 dollar endmill assortments like the set harbor freight sells just to have a bunch of sizes then once you see what you use the most buy better bits in that size and lastly you didn't post your machine but if it anything smaller get yourself some roughing endmills you can remove a lot of material faster on small machines with roughers 1/4 3/8 1/2 and 1 inch should cover you in most stuff cutoff what you can then use a rougher for the bulk and finish with a regular endmill ������ if you have an a machine that uses R8 collets you'll have to buy a holder for 1 inch shanks
    I used to buy HSS endmills, but gave up on them. The carbide lasts so much longer, and you don't have to make a mess using coolant. I still use HSS for different size slots, but that's about it.

  19. #14
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    Re: End Mills

    As a guy who makes his living using end mills, hss covers a large portion of what I use. That being said they sharpen easier. Cut finer but don't last like carbide. Insert mills stay the same size, cut consistently but require more poser because they don't like fine (.001 or less) in cuts. If it is less that the radius carbide pushed. Lathe tools or end mills or carbide insert drills, hate to say it but its a fact. Most little machines don't have the rigidity to beat the cutter (Bridgeport *clones* and smaller) incuded. The are reasons for both cutters, and knowing when to use which is due to experience.

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  20. #15
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    Re: End Mills

    Just a standard end mill.
    The roughing is use for resolving a lot metal used on CNC mills..

    Upto 7/8" use 4 flute.
    Over 1" use 6 flute.

    Keep it simple

    Dave

    Quote Originally Posted by Josey View Post
    Hi. Looking for a simple explanation on the different end mills. eg.
    four flute, six flute, etc. also roughing or finishing mills. I also see some can plunge drill.
    I"m looking for something very basic for a farm shop. would appreciate any information
    on where to start. should I look for carbide or HSS good enough?
    Thank"s for any replies.

  21. #16
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    Re: End Mills

    Boy I wish there were pics to go with all of this info. I'm sure I will have a vertical mill in my shop, and I would love to start finding/buying good deals on tooling. At this point I know so little about it I would say I know nothing.
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  23. #17
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    Re: End Mills

    Quote Originally Posted by Stick-man View Post
    Boy I wish there were pics to go with all of this info. I'm sure I will have a vertical mill in my shop, and I would love to start finding/buying good deals on tooling. At this point I know so little about it I would say I know nothing.
    The mill is going to be the cheapest part of the journey. Start buying Tooling now so that when you get your mill you are actually ready to do stuff with it. Not to mention it's a good excuse to then not back out on getting a mill once you have all the tooling.

    Start with some good parallels (that match whatever vice you get), A good vice (2 identical if budget permits), er30 or er 40 collet set and ER Chuck. If you stay with good known brands there's $1000 plus right there.

  24. #18
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    Re: End Mills

    Quote Originally Posted by Weld_ View Post
    The mill is going to be the cheapest part of the journey. Start buying Tooling now so that when you get your mill you are actually ready to do stuff with it. Not to mention it's a good excuse to then not back out on getting a mill once you have all the tooling.

    Start with some good parallels (that match whatever vice you get), A good vice (2 identical if budget permits), er30 or er 40 collet set and ER Chuck. If you stay with good known brands there's $1000 plus right there.
    DO NOT be afraid of paying (what seems like a lot of money) for a shop or individual that has lot of tooling. You will be WAY further ahead financially.

    Purchasing a bare machine would have to be almost free in order to be cost effective.


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    Re: End Mills

    Quote Originally Posted by Lis2323 View Post
    DO NOT be afraid of paying (what seems like a lot of money) for a shop or individual that has lot of tooling. You will be WAY further ahead financially.

    Purchasing a bare machine would have to be almost free in order to be cost effective.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    I agree with the 1st statement but completely disagree with the 2nd. I have never been afraid to spend money on a machine I know will make me money. Usually you get what you pay for. A machine that is "almost free" is going to require a considerable amount of time put into it. What is your time worth is the question? IMHO

  26. #20
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    Re: End Mills

    Quote Originally Posted by Weld_ View Post
    I agree with the 1st statement but completely disagree with the 2nd. I have never been afraid to spend money on a machine I know will make me money. Usually you get what you pay for. A machine that is "almost free" is going to require a considerable amount of time put into it. What is your time worth is the question? IMHO
    I suppose I should clarify my version of “almost free”. I would never buy a machine that needs considerable work. The “almost free” was meant to be metaphorical.

    I have often said (somewhat tongue in cheek) vendors of new machines should offer to supply the machine free of charge with a provision the buyer spends a set amount of money on tooling every month.

    I SHOULD have kept it simple and said “do not be afraid to pay extra for a good machine with tooling “

    My apologies.


    I agree with what you say.


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  27. #21
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    Re: End Mills

    Quote Originally Posted by Lis2323 View Post
    I suppose I should clarify my version of “almost free”. I would never buy a machine that needs considerable work. The “almost free” was meant to be metaphorical.

    I have often said (somewhat tongue in cheek) vendors of new machines should offer to supply the machine free of charge with a provision the buyer spends a set amount of money on tooling every month.

    I SHOULD have kept it simple and said “do not be afraid to pay extra for a good machine with tooling “

    My apologies.


    I agree with what you say.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    Some carbide insert manufacturers basically follow a modified version of what you said. They will give you great deals on tooling knowing that you are going to spend money with them on the inserts. Unless you destroy the holder in some unforeseen crash most people will spend considerably larger amount of money on the inserts than the tool.

  28. #22
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    Re: End Mills

    Quote Originally Posted by Weld_ View Post
    Some carbide insert manufacturers basically follow a modified version of what you said. They will give you great deals on tooling knowing that you are going to spend money with them on the inserts. Unless you destroy the holder in some unforeseen crash most people will spend considerably larger amount of money on the inserts than the tool.
    Truth, but the inverse is true of lathe tools. The holders are more expensive than the inserts. You will eventually out spend on inserts, but it takes a long time. The inserts i use can usually be rotated to be used 6 times. This helps deferr that cost. Boring inserts I burn through, but finish is like cash... the king.

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  29. #23
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    Re: End Mills

    Quote Originally Posted by Weld_ View Post
    The mill is going to be the cheapest part of the journey. Start buying Tooling now so that when you get your mill you are actually ready to do stuff with it. Not to mention it's a good excuse to then not back out on getting a mill once you have all the tooling.

    Start with some good parallels (that match whatever vice you get), A good vice (2 identical if budget permits), er30 or er 40 collet set and ER Chuck. If you stay with good known brands there's $1000 plus right there.

    Exactly. I would love to start looking for deals. Unfortunately, I have no idea what to look for, or what are good prices. I know about annular cutters for my Hougen, and I have more cutters than I will ever need.
    "Where's Stick man????????" - 7A749
    "SHHHHHH!! I sent him over to snag that MIC-4 while tbone wasn't looking!" - duaneb55
    "I have bought a few of Tbone's things unlike Stick-Man who helps himself" - TozziWelding
    "Stick-man"

  30. #24
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    Re: End Mills

    Quote Originally Posted by Stick-man View Post
    Exactly. I would love to start looking for deals. Unfortunately, I have no idea what to look for, or what are good prices. I know about annular cutters for my Hougen, and I have more cutters than I will ever need.
    Start with a Kurt Vise.

    https://www.kurtworkholding.com/prod...?orderby=price

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