There is sometimes confusion over the difference between Knurl Cutting and Knurl Forming and what is the best application to use for each method. Here's a quick synopsis of the differences and ideal application solutions.
Cutting Type Knurling tools create a knurling pattern by Material Removal.
For a Cutting Knurl, the knurl wheel’s axis is rotated to provide a leading edge, where the sharp edge will cut the knurl pattern into the work piece. Additionally, with a Cutting Knurl, less pressure is required for the operation and higher speeds and feeds can be used (use the same cutting data of High Speed or Cobalt turning tools). When Knurl Cutting, use full faced knurl wheels with a sharp edge, to penetrate into the work piece and cut the knurl pattern.
Forming Type Knurling tools create a knurling pattern by Material Displacement.
In Forming Knurl, the knurl wheels axis is set parallel to the work piece axis, and forced against the work piece, displacing the material to form the knurl pattern. A large amount of pressure is required to displace the material that forms the knurl pattern. When Knurl Forming, use beveled edge wheels to protect the edge from chipping which will create a smooth surface finish.
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