First developed by Plansee Tizit (now Ceratizit/ WNT) in 1995, Ecocut was the first commercially Multi-function tool of its type to be available. The concept is the use of a tool with a single indexable insert that can drill, bore internal diameters but also capable of turning external diameters. In many cases, the number of tools used to produce turned parts can be significantly reduced. This in turn leads to a reduced set up time, more simple CNC programs and reduced cycle time. While it's often mistaken for "Eco drill," Ecocut's capabilities go far beyond a standard drill, making it an indispensable tool in CNC lathe operations.
The Versatile Ecocut:
Ecocut finds its primary application on CNC lathes, where it functions as a stationary tool. Nevertheless, its versatility allows it to be used on centre lathes with excellent results. In certain scenarios, it can be employed on rotating applications like machining centres or milling machines. However, it's important to note that using Ecocut in rotating applications comes with limitations, particularly in adjusting the cutting diameter. This would require an eccentric sleeve to address the challenge effectively.
Fitting the Insert:
Properly fitting the insert is crucial for optimal performance, especially with smaller sizes (e.g., 10, 12, 14, 16 diameters). The insert should be oriented correctly, with an arrow on the top surface pointing to the cutting edge's correct position. To ensure the cutting edge is slightly below the centre (when the component and tool are concentrically set), inserts are manufactured to 'N' tolerance, which maintains precise height/thickness measurements.
When working with Ecocut, several essential tool checks must be conducted to ensure accurate results and efficient machining processes. After setting up the tool, perform an initial test drill about 3mm deep. The cutting edge should be slightly below the centre during concentric setting, preventing poor surface quality (chatter) and ensuring easy removal of a small pip.
Check the achieved hole diameter and adjust settings such as work offset, wear offset, and tool data as needed. Monitor surface quality, diameter, and look for any chatter or vibration marks on the hole's bottom. Unusual noise during machining indicates underlying issues that require resolution.
Swarf and Chip Formation:
Observe swarf and chip formation during the process. On most materials, a ½ funnel shape is expected. Long chipping materials may produce continuous swarf chips, while short chipping materials like brass and cast iron will yield fragmented chips resembling needles.
Adhering to Manufacturer's Recommendations:
Work within the manufacturer's specified maximum drilling and boring depths. Similarly, follow drilling and boring feed-rates as recommended. As a general rule, the feed-rate for boring should be approximately twice that of drilling after establishing a suitable drilling feed-rate.
Ecocut's Unique Capabilities:
Ecocut's versatility enables a variety of machining operations, including drilling, internal boring, external facing, and external turning. However, when engaging in external turning, remember to rotate the spindle in the opposite direction.
Ecocut offers an array of capabilities in a single tool. As with any tool, understanding its features and adhering to proper procedures are critical for achieving excellent results. If encountering any challenges or problematic situations, don't hesitate to give us a call.