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have got an order to engrave stainless steel signs - only 300 x 55 - thing is i'm told its hard to engrve ,

i have to cut into it as it has to be paintfilled. any tips?

 

More trouble than its worth. If there is a lot of these plates to do. I'd give it a miss. It will give your machine a hammering. bearing ect.

Done em myself in the past :evil: Usually they are bulk orders and the customer wants em done at a discounted price, cus they think its a five minit job. 8)

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You could do with an orange band cutter and use our Tarfil lubricant. I've found rotating your cutter at about 12-13000 rpm and X,Y speed set to minimum. Turn the collar on your spindle so theres no up and down movement on the spring. As people have said don't go anymore than .2 depth. Hope this helps.

 

P.S. you get a nice black mark on stainless with a laser and cermark spray and you don't need to fill with paint.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Turn the collar on your spindle so theres no up and down movement on the spring.

 

I wouldn't recommend this on any job, The spring is designed to be soft or hard, but never solid, this will put a huge strain on the running gear of your machine. There has to be some give somewhere and this is what the spring is for, to take the load off the machine itself.

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Turn the collar on your spindle so theres no up and down movement on the spring.

 

I wouldn't recommend this on any job, The spring is designed to be soft or hard, but never solid, this will put a huge strain on the running gear of your machine. There has to be some give somewhere and this is what the spring is for, to take the load off the machine itself.

 

From an engineering point of view, when machining any type of metal especially hard materials like stainless steel, to achieve an acceptable finish you have to eliminate any form of vibration. Also lubrication must be used to assist the tools cutting ability and to act as a coolant to stop the tool burning from the temeratures created by friction and thus weakening the tip of the tool. If too quick of a feed rate is used you also run the risk of chipping the cutting edge of a carbide steel tool. This could also be the result if a carbide tipped tool has any way to vibrate (up and down movement) Also a very important factor is a correctly sharpened cutting tool with sufficient rake angle to allow for maximum chip (swarf) flow.

 

From an engraving point of view pretty much the same, this is why a collet spindle is highly recommended to eliminate side to side movement by holding the tool as close to its cutting tip as possible (like a conventional milling machine) rather than holding it at the far end of the tool by the brass cutter knob. So to eliminate any further risk of vibration the tool needs to be firm on the z axis too. Finally as stressed before never try to over work your machine or tools by cutting too deep in one pass.:D

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Multiple passes are definately the order of the day. I wouldn't dispute that, and never did.

I still think a solid collet is not the way to go. Not with these engraving machines. If you have 1mm movement in the collet, this is still very firm, and if you have the correct cutter and it is sharp. it will cut through the stainless steel. However if your collet is solid and half way through the job and your cutter begins to blunten(which it will). were do you think the stress will be on your machine, if all the movement is taken out of your collet.

This isn't a theory, I've done it :wink:

 

is200tx Forget it, it will harm your machine without a doubt.

 

is400's Alot stronger machine, but still be very carefull. I still think they're not built for stainless steel. (only my opinion)

 

is7000 this machine has a gantry (if that is the right word) which makes it alot stronger than the others. But stainless steel gave it a right hammering, Just had to have a new motor and belts fitted.

Stainless steel definately caused this damage.

I was at a factory a few months ago were they manufacture signs in a big way. The machine they do their stainless steel on looked to be about 2 ton in weight, And all the head and carriage was heavy cast iron.

which made our machines look micky mouse.

I'm not knocking our machines, just saying that in my opinion, they're not up to stainless steel. :wink:

But then again you wouldn't want to engrave a tankard on the factory machine :roll:

Your machine is fit for a purpose, and stainless ain't it. thats my opinion anyway :wink:

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k4mrc

hi

remeber if you do take the job on push the client into having brushed s. s. as this is easier to hide any scratches and can polish up better, the shiney scatches to easily. often you need a new cutter atfer each s.s. sign you do if you have a lot of charactors/logos to do. and use s.s. stocked sized plates from your supply to make life a bit easier. good luck paul

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I have engraved several stainless items.. including a pair of badges which I made for my truck. I use a carbide tip and the slowest speed on the machine with a medium amount of pressure. I use 20 / 50 oil as a lubricant / coolant and cut at O.25ml per pass. The machine being a Gravograph IS200.

 

I engraved pretty deeply into these badges .. but the cuttter didn't seem to suffer. There is a Norwegian firm who speciiaise in cutters for stainless work.. Their name escapes me but I think it's something like Crown Norveige. They are usually found at Trophex.

 

29_10th_September_2006_006_1.jpg

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