BRM's Flexible Honing, Surface Finishing, and Deburring Blog Blog

BRM's Flexible Honing, Surface Finishing, and Deburring Blog

BRM's Flexible Honing, Surface Finishing, and Deburring Blog is the place for conversation and discussion about how to solve difficult finishing problems. For over 50 years, Brush Research Manufacturing (BRM) has helped customers use brushing technology to clean, rebuild, and resurface components ranging from engine cylinders to brake rotors to flywheels to firearms. BRM's Blog on CR4 provides real-world examples of how flex hones and wire brushes work. It also evaluates related technologies and invites questions from the community.

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Automated Deburring and Surface Finishing for Parts Manufacturing

Posted March 17, 2014 8:27 PM by Brush Research

Leading manufacturers are automating surface finishing and deburring operations to reduce labor costs and speed high-volume parts finishing. Instead of removing burrs off-line as a secondary process, part manufacturers are performing both tasks on-line at the same time. Automated deburring and surface finishing eliminates time-consuming manual operations, improves production efficiency, and ensures part consistency.

Case Study: Orange Vise

The March 2014 edition of Industrial Machinery Digest examines how one machine parts manufacturer is automating operations with NamPower brush tools from Brush Research Manufacturing (BRM). For Orange Vise, a California manufacturer of CNC machine vises and quick-fixturing components, BRM's NamPower abrasive disc brushes exceed expectations. "We started using NamPower brushes for deburring," says Orange Vise founder Eric Sun, "but quickly discovered they provided a really nice surface finish."

Before Orange Vise began using NamPower abrasive brushes, the CNC parts manufacturer needed an employee to inspect each part and remove burrs by hand. "It was time-intensive," Sun told Industrial Machinery Digest, "particularly for work that was purely cosmetic." The company's CNC machine vises are made of different metals, and required grinding on non-critical, unhardened surfaces to create a uniform appearance over the entire workpiece.

Today, Orange Vise is using NamPower technology to achieve a smooth, blended surface finish on machined components. The Orange County manufacturer mounts NamPower abrasive disc brushes in its Mori Seiki NHX4000 high-speed horizontal machining center. NamPower brushes can also be used with robotic arms and transfer lines. BRM's abrasive nylon brushes work well with non-ferrous metals, cast iron, mild steel and ductile iron, stainless and alloy steels, titanium, and high-nickel alloys.

There are two types of NamPower abrasive disc brushes: dot and turbine. The dot-style NamPower brushes that Orange Vise uses are ideal for general-purpose deburring, surface finishing, and edge blending. Turbine-style brush tools are recommended for medium and heavy deburring because they have a heavier fill density.

NamPower Technology

NamPower abrasive disc brushes consist of flexible nylon abrasive filaments that are bonded to a fiber-reinforced thermoplastic base. With their unique combination of ceramic and silicon carbide abrasives, these BRM industrial brushes are designed to remove burrs and improve surface finish at the same time. As Industrial Machinery Digest explains, "the silicon carbide acts as a buffer to the cutting action" of the coarser, but extremely durable ceramic abrasive.

The industrial brush tool's nylon abrasive filaments work like flexible files, wiping across edges and surfaces while conforming closely to part contours. NamPower nylon abrasive brushes are also long-lasting and "self-sharpening", as the magazine explains. With their linear construction, sharp new abrasive grains come into contact with the work surface. The result is a consistent deburring action throughout the length of the bristles, from the first part to the last. According to Industrial Digest, there are reports of the NamPower brushes lasting for over 100,000 parts.

BRM's NamPower technology also features lightweight tool holders that help to reduce vibration, improve performance, and extend brush life. Made with a carbon fiber reinforced thermoplastic material that's bonded to a hardened and ground steel shank, these NamPower accessories are both rigid and well-balanced. They're also designed especially for use with NamPower's unique flow-through coolant system.

Unlike other abrasive disc brushes, NamPower deburring tools allow fluid to flow from the brush center instead of supplying lubrication only from the outside. As BRM's How to Automate Deburring and Surface Finishing video explains, the result is better cutting action and longer tool life. BRM's flow-through coolant technology also allows NamPower brushes to run at greater cut depths while reducing heat generation and eliminating filament smearing.

Author's Note: This CR4 blog entry originally appeared in the BRM Flex-Hone Blog.

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