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Surface finish achievable with EDM

Surface finish is often called out on part prints. Sometimes it’s because it influences appearance, more often because it affects how surfaces slide over one another. Bearing surfaces and those used for sealing are examples of where finish is important. An EDM surface finish is different to that produced by conventional machining. Cutting processes produce…

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Let EDM be your secret weapon

Thin walls, tight internal radii, tapers, deep blind pockets in hard materials. Sometimes it seems designers are just trying to find the limits of what manufacturing can do. It’s as if they’re hoping manufacturing will say, “Can’t be done.” The thing is, if manufacturing only has access to conventional machining processes they’re probably right. Some…

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How accurate is wire EDM?

It’s only natural that designers and toolmakers should ask about the precision of EDM. Knowing the capabilities of the process informs design decisions and influences costs. Whether the parts being made are surgical instruments, extrusion dies, or aerospace components, it’s important to know what tolerances are achievable. Unfortunately, there’s no simple answer. While accuracies of…

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Wire EDM is Not Just for Tooling

You can think of wire EDM as the non-contact, 21st Century version of the fretsaw. A fretsaw is used to cut complex shapes from blocks of wood. The key to its versatility is the blade, which is essentially just an abrasive wire. Being thin and able to cut on all sides, the woodworker can turn it easily to follow…

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Down to the bone: Using EDM in medical device manufacturing

Say “medical device manufacturing” and most people think of investment cast hip joints and replacement patellas. The reality is, medical devices range from, as the FDA says, “…tongue depressors and bedpans to … pacemakers … and laser surgical devices.” Some of these devices need electro-discharge machining (EDM) for their manufacture while many more need EDM…

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