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What’s the best way to create a 4-Axis program to ensure the best accuracy and eliminate wire lines and facetted geometry?

This question hits on many areas that relate to the machine as well as CAM system programming techniques. Here are a few items to address and review for best results: MACHINE ITEMS: Maximum Taper Angle: It’s important to identify the maximum taper angle that a...

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Wire EDM: Transport Systems

To understand the need for controlling the wire from the spool to the scrap bin or scrap roll, we look at each component and its importance in the wire EDM transport system. We’ll look at where we started and then where we are today. At the heart of this system...

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Makino

What is the proper programming format for a tapered or 4-axis profile that requires the manual wire threading of an angular start hole on a wire EDM machine?

Angular start holes commonly occur when machining mold tooling lifter pockets and ejector pin details. As part of this process, a position for manual wire threading needs to be determined within the profile, and a M01 Stop Point should be created within the NC...

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Wire EDM: To D or Not, and Y

Programming with offsets The Use of D offsets was used to shorten and simplify the programing process. We needed a process to edit without rewriting the entire program to make minor changes, so let’s look at what was involved and Y the use of D offsets was needed. The...

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Wire EDM: How We Got Here

More than 45 years ago, a young tool and die maker and plastic injection mold builder named Gordon Shumway saw the EDM process in its infancy and made learning the process his quest. Since then, he’s worked with various major manufacturers as a research and...

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Wire EDM: GIGO

Garbage In Garbage Out: Mistakes in the Wire EDM are most often made before the start button is pressed. As the operator, you are often pushed to get the machine cutting, because when it’s not cutting, it’s not making money, right? WRONG! What if in the process of...

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What is the best type of coated wire to use for high-precision machining applications?

It is important to understand that certain types of coated wire can degrade the accuracy output from the machine. Part accuracy can be reduced with coated wire as a result of the wire’s outer coating eroding and vaporizing more quickly than a standard brass...

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Wire EDM: What makes a WEDM last—and how long?

Let us look at a few reasons why a Wire Electrical Discharge Machine should last many years and produce perfect parts from cradle to grave. The machining pressures and speeds are low. As the wire cuts through the electrically conductive part, it moves at a speed...

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Wire EDM: How Much Better Is Bigger?

Large-diameter wire for EDM has been around for decades, but just recently it has taken the market by storm. To understand how and why this is happening I will go back to my personal experiences as a WEDM operator. In 1976, the industry-standard wire diameter was...

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What is the best type of coated wire to use for achieving the highest quality surface finish?

There are many different types of coated wire available today, so it is important to understand the specific application for which a wire was designed and intended. There isn’t a single wire type that is best for every application. Some are designed for speed,...

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Wire EDM: Common Causes of Wire Breakage

Much research has been done on the issue of wire breakage during the machining process. But before we explore the types of wire that can be used to decrease wire breakage in certain materials, we must first look at what causes wire breakage in general. Current Density...

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Wire EDM: Key Physical Properties

Key physical properties that electrical discharge machine wires must incorporate are: Conductivity: A high and good conductivity rating is imperative in light of the fact that, at any rate hypothetically, it implies wire may convey additional current, that compares to...

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Wire EDM: Top Ten Cleaning Tips

Wire Spool Area: The interval of cleaning and maintenance in the wire spool area is easier to remember as you replace empty wire spools frequently. A light blast of air or wiping with a cloth is sufficient for general maintenance in this area. Be sure to remove excess...

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What Is the Best Type of Coated/Stratified Wire to Use?

This is a common question and one that does not have a simplistic answer, as there are many different machine and application variables that must be examined in order to determine which wire type is best. In order to evaluate your wire needs, you’ll want to answer...

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The Best Way to Store Wire Spools

When storing new or partially used wire spools, they should not be stored with the wire laying horizontally (laying on the spool flanges). It is common to store a spool by laying it on the flanges so that the spool does not roll away

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EDM and Linear vs Ballscrews

An overview of the two most common drive systems in EDM machines today and what differences they bring to the EDM process. Ballscrews have been with us for many years and have proved to be accurate, reliable, easy to maintain and easy to fit many different...

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What characteristics should be examined when comparing wire types? (Part 1 of 2)

There are several key characteristics that should be evaluated when evaluating a new wire type or brand. 4 Main Wire Characteristics CleanlinessWire memory and threading capabilitiesCutting performanceVariation of the wire by batch A previous article reviewed...

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What are the best cleaners to maintain my Wire EDM machine?

Proper maintenance and cleaning of Wire EDM equipment is key to achieve reliable and repeatable cutting results. Use the mildest possible, yet most effective cleaner. All cleaning chemicals need to be used sparingly within the machine. It is best to apply cleaners to...

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What Characteristics Should Be Examined When Comparing Two Different EDM Wire Types?

This is an excellent question that applies to both plain brass and coated/stratified wire. When comparing different wires, there are several characteristics and attributes that should be examined beyond price alone. Depending on how often different brands or types of...

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What characteristics should be examined when comparing wire types? (Part 2 of 2)

This is a great question that applies to both plain brass and coated wires. When comparing wires, several characteristics and attributes should be examined, especially when trying the first spool of a new wire brand or type. Price alone is not a good...

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