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Expertise In Grooving For Small Part Production

Expertise In Grooving For Small Part Production

Expertise In Grooving For Small Part Production

The trend towards miniaturisation of even complex component geometries is driving the need for highly reliable grooving tools. Article by Walter AG.

Grooving processes play an important role, especially in mass production. The trend towards miniaturisation of even complex component geometries is one of the driving forces, especially in the field of parting off and grooving tools. For several years now, the Tübingen-based machining specialist Walter AG has successfully positioned itself here as a provider with excellent technological expertise.

Markus Stumm, product manager for grooving at Walter, states, “We have significantly expanded our portfolio in recent years. In 2020, we will further strengthen our activities in this field. With the Walter Cut DX18, we are launching a tool with innovative clamping that will set completely new standards.”

Conquering the Conservative Market with Innovative Solutions

Users are particularly conservative when grooving. Stumm explains, “In mass production, when the process is running reasonably well, manufacturers rarely change the tooling system. We have to offer a clear advantage in terms of productivity and cost-efficiency to get to the machine. Problems with process reliability with the existing tools, or when a machining strategy is changed, provide us with an opportunity.”

The parameters, according to which the decision for a parting off process and the corresponding tools is made, are machine run times, tool life and process reliability. Typical problem areas, especially for machining operations in which you are grooving deeper into the workpiece, are the stable fixing of the indexable inserts, chip breaking, and cooling. Users who want to play it safe therefore reduce the cutting data below the recommended values. Who wants to risk stopping the production process due to chip jams, a vibrating tool or even if a cutting edge breaks?

This is exactly where the Walter grooving experts come in: With its portfolio of grooving tools, Walter already covers a wide range of grooving applications. Walter Cut DX18 is a double-edged system for grooving and parting off especially on Swiss type auto lathes or multi-spindle machines.

Walter Cut DX18 – Maximum Stability and Convenient Changeover

The Walter DX18 system is suitable for parting diameters of up to 35 mm. With the innovative, patent-pending positive engagement system, Walter’s developers are addressing the fundamental problems of narrowly dimensioned parting off tools: the stability and handling of the cutting insert.

In conventional screw clamping, the cutting forces act in such a way that the existing clamping forces are not sufficient—with negative effects on machining quality and process reliability. In contrast, the new Walter Cut DX18 cutting insert geometry locks the insert securely via positive engagement.

Another innovation is the SmartLock system, which considerably simplifies insert changeover. With conventional screw-clamped systems, the machine operator has to remove the entire tool for this purpose—and this, in cramped and not always user-friendly “oily” machine conditions. With the Walter SmartLock system, the clamping screw is located on the side of the tool: simply insert the screwdriver, unscrew and change the indexable insert. Thanks to the positive engagement, the new cutting insert adjusts correctly, even with very narrow insert widths. 

The potential of the system was successfully proven in a tool life test on a Swiss type auto lathe. An outer diameter of 12 mm was parted off from 1.4057 material. The cutting edge width used was 2 mm. Stumm comments, “With the new double-edged Walter Cut DX system, we were able to more than double the tool life compared to the single-edged competitor—with maximum process reliability and productivity. The customer particularly liked the fact that they no longer had to remove the tool for changing the insert.”


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