No doubt, thread milling has completely changed the manner in which machinists approach threading. Tapping may be time-tested, relatively fast, and proven effective, but it has its drawbacks.
Thread milling is efficient and effective; it uses a mill of a smaller diameter than the hole which needs to be threaded, which streamlines chip evacuation and leaves a superior finish.
Thread milling allows for precise adjustments to the size and pitch of threads using CNC equipment and offers unparalleled versatility. A tap is a tap and lacks this versatility.
So it’s not a surprise that the practice of thread milling has grown substantially.
However, some shops are hesitant to invest in thread milling equipment because it seems too expensive or complicated.
Case in point: even the mills themselves used to cut threads exhibit fine, yet impactful, variations.
For instance, in the world of thread milling, there are two broad classes of thread mills: full form and single pitch thread mills.
Full-form thread mills are pretty recognizable. They have what appear to be rows of teeth along the cutting surface. This design makes it possible for the tool to cut threads in a single passing motion.
During the process of cutting threads, the height of the tool is adjusted, creating the threads as the tool cuts. These tools can be used for threading a wide variety of surfaces that have the same pitch. Though they are restricted to producing threads of a single pitch, they can be used to cut threads of varying diameters.
They are fast and effective – but with that said, at the end of the day, they are still limited to one pitch.
Single pitch thread mills are slightly different. Instead of having rows of cutting teeth, single pitch thread mills have a single tooth (row of teeth) on the cutting surface.
As can be expected, this makes it take longer to complete threading operations with these single pitch thread mills, but there are a number of advantages as well.
Are There Advantages to Using Single Pitch Thread Mills?
The single tooth of single pitch thread mills requires the tool to pass along the entire surface of the material to be threaded, which takes more time than would be required with a full-form mill.
However, single pitch thread mills are better for cutting materials with long overhangs as well as delicate materials. In addition, the tool creates less friction because there is less physical contact with the working medium; this can potentially diminish tool wear.
Another significant advantage is that full-form mills are limited to creating threads of a single pitch whereas single-form mills are not. The lone row of cutting teeth enables single form mills to create much more versatile threads of varying diameter and pitch.
Being able to cut a wider variety of thread sizes and pitches is itself an operational efficiency, requiring the operator to perform fewer tool changes. Also, the diminished friction also enables single-pitch thread mills to cut threads with a lesser application of machine power, enabling smaller machines to use them more effectively.
Where Can You Get Single Pitch Thread Mills?
Convinced thread milling is the future, whether you’re looking for single pitch or full-form thread mills? Visit Online Carbine online today.
Online Carbide (OnlineCarbide.com) carries a wide range of high-quality carbide end-mills, some of which are finished with TiAlN coatings for high-wear resistance and superior lubricity.
In addition to full-form and single pitch thread mills, Online Carbine also produces chamfer mills, drill mills, spot drills, and much more. Visit their website via the links above for more information and get in touch with them at 630-238-1424 for more information.