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Seco Tools’ new Secomax CS300 ceramic inserts and cutter bodies will increase productivity up to 8X over carbide milling, for a range of components for aerospace and power generation turbines. These SiAlON-type ceramics provide optimal flank wear-resistance at higher cutting speeds (1,970-3,940 fpm / 600-1,200 mpm) and enable feeds from 0.002 – 0.006 in. (0.05 – 0.15 mm) per tooth. Combined, these attributes reduce machining cost per workpiece, increase output and lower energy consumption.

Cutting Tool Consumption Quickening Through October

Dec. 13, 2017
In a sign of U.S. manufacturing sector expansion, cutting tool consumption rose +13.2%, now up 8.0% YTD

U.S. manufacturers’ cutting-tool purchases totaled $198.00 million during October, a rise of 13.2% from September’s $174.92 million total and up 17.2% versus October 2016’s $169.00 million. Through 10 months of the current year, domestic cutting-tool purchases total $1.835 billion, a rise of 8.0% over the January-October 2016 period.

Cutting tools are high-value consumable products used by manufacturers to perform not only cutting but turning, grinding, honing, and various other production processes. As such, consumption of cutting tools presents a quantifiable index to the current state of manufacturing activity, comparable to durable goods shipments.  

The U.S. Cutting Tool Institute and AMT – the Assn. for Manufacturing Technology release the monthly Cutting Tool Market Report from which the latest figures are drawn. CTMR data is based on the totals reported by participating companies, whose results represent the majority of the U.S. market for cutting tools.

“The stars continue to align with consumer confidence at an all-time high. Aerospace and automotive industries continue to stay strong along with the rest of the industrial economy, which bodes well for the cutting tool industry,” said Steve Stokey, a director of the USCTI and exec. vice president and owner of Allied Machine & Engineering Corp., Dover, OH. “We see this with the 8.0% year-to-date increase as the year goes on, the numbers continue to improve.”

In their release, USMTI and AMT noted that current economic conditions support increases in manufacturing activity: 3Q 2017 U.S. GDP growth of 3.3%; business investment, +4.7%; and new equipment purchases, +10.4%.

By extension, AMT’s recent release of the U.S. Manufacturing Technology Orders report for October also showed long-term strength in the sector, with U.S. machine shops and other manufacturers’ new orders for capital equipment increasing in October for a third consecutive month, +21.0% year-over-year, and +7.6% year-to-date.

“With this October’s 17% growth, it suggests that the upward trend is accelerating. This is good news for our industry as we move into 2018,” Stokey concluded.

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