Superabrasive Wheels get Bigger

Superabrasive Wheels get Bigger

Meister external wheels are for (left to right, top: bottom): cylindrical grinding, turbine blade grinding, cam grinding, fine grinding, wafer grinding and tool grinding.

“In the past, many manufacturers were wary of upgrading to superabrasives for their external grinding applications due to the relatively high cost of these products as compared with their conventional counterparts,” Bruce Northrup, general manager of Meister Abrasives USA (www.meister-abrasives-usa.com) said.

“In addition, there has only been a relatively small population of grinding machine systems with the proper stiffness, speed, accuracy, repeatability and rotary dressing capabilities needed to fully utilize the advantages of superabrasives. That situation is changing rapidly,” he added.

A growing number of new external/ O.D. grinding machine systems take advantage of superabrasives.

Manufacturers who considered but rejected the idea of using superabrasive wheels in the past now have good reason to reconsider.

In addition, there is a growing category of precision parts being manufactured from exotic materials that can only be ground with superabrasives.

Meister Abrasives USA, known as a manufacturer of internal bore grinding wheels, has developed a line of external abrasive products in parallel with this trend to maximize grinding performance and minimize costs.

Meister’s early focus on small internal grinding wheels made it necessary for the company to pay close attention to the consistency and quality of superabrasive materials and bonding system performance. Even small variations in these attributes show up quickly in internal grinding because the life of a small wheel is relatively short to begin with.

“Now that this expertise has been transferred to large wheels, users are experiencing quantifiable cost/ performance advantages not only versus conventional wheels but also competitive superabrasive products. Users are reporting 20 percent faster cycle times and/or cost per part Meister external wheels are for (left to right, top: bottom): cylindrical grinding, turbine blade grinding, cam grinding, fine grinding, wafer grinding and tool grinding. reductions to 30 percent,” Northrup said.

“Our external wheels, customized for each application, deliver the long wheel life, consistent wheel-towheel performance, and low cost per manufactured part comparable to our line of internal grinding wheels. Furthermore, wheel specifications can be tuned to provide ultra-consistent high-volume manufacturing or the versatility that allows smaller shops to use a single wheel on a number of different applications,” he added.

The Meister external line includes vitrified CBN and diamond wheels from 4-in. (100 mm) diameter to 28-in. (700 mm) and lapping/finegrinding plates to 48-in. diameter (1,220 mm). Applications supported include O.D. cylindrical, creep feed, surface, double disk, wafer backgrinding, as well as fine grinding and lapping. The most active markets for these products include the medical, aerospace, semiconductor, optical, tool & die, and automotive industries.

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