I'm pretty new to the CNC world - only been doing it for a little over a month. I'm working on a Komo Mach 1 with RouterCIM that my company recently purchased. I've gotten pretty familiar with it, using it mainly to CNC plywood, acrylic, PVC and the occasional aluminum. The only aluminum I've done thus far has been 1/6" thick stuff used in laminating. After a couple of tries, I was able to successfully run the job and have it look flawless... However, what I'm facing now is a little different. This new job consists of 1/4" diamond plate aluminum (unsure of grade). I plan on using a 3/8" downcut spiral O-flute solid carbide bit (Onsrud # 64-031), as this is the only bit I have available at the moment that is rated for aluminum.
Would it be a good idea to run this diamond plate in two or more passes or just one? What should I use to spray the tool in order to avoid overheating? Does my feed/rpm sound right? 12,000-13,000 rpm/150-200 feed rate?
From contributor D:
What are you doing? A through cut? A design milled in the surface? I would, myself, slow feed speed way down and make many very shallow passes, .005 or less, per pass. Though I could be way off.
Aluminum diamond plate is one of the harder grades of aluminum. It is used a great deal on running boards and other tough applications.
Based on this information, you can run this application at 12,000 RPM's and 76 inches per minute feed rate. This is a starting feed rate you can adjust up to increase production or down to improve finish quality.
As for coolant, if you want non-messy options, try stick wax or a cold air gun. If mess isn't an issue, most metalworking coolants will work, but some are made for non-ferrous metals as they will not stain the part.