Millenium Mill CNC Series: Episode 2

Today in Episode 2 of the series I am attempting to machine the Titan 4M part. This part doesn’t really have any new types of feature compared to the 1M so I decided to really push the limits of the machine. In doing so I made a number of mistakes, I pushed the machine past it’s limits and I ultimately failed to produce a part at the end of it all!

Watch the full episode below and read on further to see the details of each of the ops.

Tooling

Fixturing for this part is pretty simple and I used the same low profile vice for both the main machining ops and removing the stock from the bottom. This is the first full part I’ve done with these DLC coated end mills from Dreanique and I really am impressed. For dry cutting aluminium they are great and I’ve not had any gumming up of the end mills.

Machining

I will try to use similar machining steps/methods in these videos as are used on the titans of CNC tutorials however there will be changes to accommodate the end mills I have and the machines capability.

OP1001 – Face top of stock

Facing the stock went well. The machine was capable with the low depth of cut to hit the 2500mm/min (highest feed rate tested yet). Decent chip generation.

  • 6mm DLC single flute end mill
  • Spindle speed: 24k RM
  • Feed speed: 2388 mm/min
  • feed per tooth: 0.1 mm
  • Depth of cut: 1.5mm
  • Stepover: 4mm
  • Machining time: 49 secs

OP1002 – Adaptive clearing

Here is where things started to go wrong. Initially I set this toolpath to cut a bit lower than the bottom of the part forgetting to account for the vice clearance. I managed to just skim the hardened steel vice insert before hitting the E-Stop. I re-planned it without extending the depth past the bottom of the part and started again.

Watching the video you can clearly see and hear chatter occurring during this operation. The machine can’t handle the combination of this speed, depth of cut and stepover. Not to mention this is quite a long tool for it’s diameter which will not help the situation. Overall the toolpath did remove a lot of material fast but somewhere during the pocket operation it lost some steps causing the final part where the tool went to cut the half height shoulders to be out of position although not by enough that I noticed during this op.

  • 6mm DLC single flute end mill
  • Spindle speed: 24k RM
  • Feed speed: 2380 mm/min
  • feed per tooth: 0.1 mm
  • Depth of cut: 25mm (limit)
  • Optimal load: 0.6mm
  • Machining time: 4 mins 29 secs

OP1003 – External contour

The lost steps from the previous OP were the primary cause of failure for this one however given I was attempting a similar material removal rate the settings were probably a bit optimistic anyway. The machine plunged in too close to the corner and then attempted to cut far deeper than it should have due to the position now being off. At this point I called it a day on this part!

  • 6mm DLC single flute end mill
  • Spindle speed: 24k RM
  • Feed speed: 2388 mm/min
  • feed per tooth: 0.1 mm
  • Depth of cut: 25mm (limit)
  • Maximum stepover: 0.5mm
  • Machining time: 0 mins 23 secs

Finished part

Overall this part was a complete fail. That said it was very good to identifying the real upper limits in terms of feed rates and depths of cuts that the Millenium Mill is capable of.

Stay tuned for episode 3 where I will be machining some soft jaw blanks for the low profile vice, with more conservative settings based on what I’ve learnt form this video.

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