Xebec deburring tools
A range of high-precision, abrasive deburring tools made from aluminium oxide (alumina) has been introduced for use on static platforms such as machining centres, mills, drilling machines and special-purpose machine tools, but are equally suitable for mounting on industrial robots. Versions are also available for hand-held power tools.
Made by Xebec Technology, they comprise rods consisting of 1,000 alumina fibre filaments measuring just 10 microns in diameter. The self-sharpening cutting action is on the tip only, there being no abrasive effect on the sides of the rods.
Dozens or hundreds of parallel rods go to make up a hollow, cylindrical tool rather like an elongated cup. The rods are prevented from unduly splaying under centrifugal force by a metal sleeve whose ID is approximately the same as the OD of the tool. Only a short length of the fibre rods protrudes at any given time from the end of the sleeve, which is retracted by hand occasionally to compensate for rod wear. Periodic offsets also have to be entered into the machine tool control.
Xebec assets that this range of are precision deburring, deflashing, finishing and polishing tools, is more akin to an endmill than a wire brush, which is relatively crude in its application.
Fibres are available in two grades, course and fine, and tools may be from six to 100 mm in diameter. Despite their high metal removal rate, the tools wear slowly due to their high alumina content and also as a result of their resistance to high temperatures as well as to water- and oil-based coolants. The tools are equally capable of cutting dry.
Xebec has also found a way of growing the fibres radially to form a stone-like tool similar to a mounted point, but with considerably better longevity and controllability when machining. Available in diameters from three to 20 mm, they are called Cross-Hole Deburring Tools, as this is their primary application. They have a flexible shaft and are intended for efficient removal of burrs with a base thickness of 0.2 mm or less. There is also a solid brush version for finer burrs of under 0.1 mm diameter.
The cross-hole deburring tools may be used with static or hand-held machines. Specifically for freehand deburring, there is an additional range of solid, 6 mm diameter, alumina fibre filament brushes with shaped ends. Primary application is EDM scale removal from moulds and subsequent polishing.
Author: Andrew Allcock