Welcome to the first entry in CR4's newest blog, How to Select Industrial Products. It's been awhile since I've blogged for CR4, but
that's not because I stopped writing. Summer
has been a busy season, and I've had plenty of projects for CR4's parent
company - GlobalSpec. For those who may
be new to CR4 (or still unfamiliar with GlobalSpec), my employer provides a
search engine for industrial products.
As an engineer, you probably source products, too - but this
blog isn't an advertisement for GlobalSpec.
The reason I'm writing is to give you a peek inside the kitchen, where I'd
like you to help me stir the pot. No, I don't mean "stir the pot" in the sense
of "let's have an argument". Rather, I'd like to know what you'd add to various
recipes (technical definitions) that I devise. They involve technical writing instead of tacos
or turkey, but your engineering expertise could make the difference between
hamburger and steak. There will be disagreements,
of course, but no food fights -please.
The first item on the menu is magnetic chucks, which are
used to hold workpieces made of ferrous materials. According to Modern Machine Shop, "magnets may be a viable workholding solution for your shop" - especially
if you're looking to reduce setup times. So now I'm trying to distinguish
three magnetic chuck types: permanent, electromagnetic, and electro-permanent.
The definitions I've devised are solid fare, but they're a bit bland. For
example, I've written that two of the three types are used in grinding
applications. So what? That's like writing "beer is a beverage you can
have with lunch or dinner". When do you have beer with lunch, and when do you
have it with dinner? Just as the day of the week can make the difference in
drinking, does your grinding application determine which type of magnetic chuck to select?
Here are my definitions - the basic recipes.
magnetic chucks are suitable for EDM and grinding applications. They are
made from magnetized materials and exhibit a constant magnetic field without
needing to introduce an electric current.
chucks are suitable for EDM, grinding, drilling, and turning
applications. They generate a magnetic field when electrical current is
magnetic chucks are a hybrid of electromagnetic and permanent magnetic
chucks. An electrical current is applied to lock and unlock the chuck, but in
the event of a loss of power, the chuck continues to hold the part tightly.
As an engineer, which type of magnetic chuck do you
recommend - why and for what reasons? Sure, I can find answers on the Web
(and I will), but I'd like your input, too.
As the Internet's greatest engineering community, why shouldn't I ask
you? So come help stir the pot and we'll make a dish that all engineers can