6 Factors To Look At While Choosing The Right End Mill For The Task

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End Mill

Silver and golden end mill cutter

6 Factors To Look At While Choosing The Right End Mill For The Task

The end mill is designed by an end mill manufacturer with the purpose that each tip shape offers a unique way for various applications. Interpreting what end mill to choose depends on the project, what material is required and the desired surface finish. Picking the wrong cutting tool can rapidly damage a work piece. This can cause you to scrap an entire batch.

For machining operations, hydraulic tool holders are also ideal that involves high accuracy, such as:

  • Drilling
  • Reaming
  • End milling

There are a few factors to consider when choosing the right end mill for your CNC process.

Length of the End Mill:

First, you must decide the depth of your end mill. It is recommended choosing the shortest length end mill that can still be cut. For what reason should this be done? Selecting the shortest length increases the stability of the tool. This allows for more hostile speeds, reducing the tendency for the tool to chatter.

Materials Of End Mills:

The most common materials used in the manufacturing of end mills are:

  • High-speed steel (HSS)
  • Carbide.

HSS can be used in:

  • Older
  • Slower
  • Less rigid machines

They are also used for one-off or very short-run production. It will run slower but is less expensive, less hard in unstable conditions.

Carbide is chosen in CNC machine tools where:

  • Higher speeds
  • Fewer tooling changes
  • Increased productivity

In these applications, the higher cost is easily acceptable by longer tool life and shorter cycle times.


Flutes are the helical channels that wrap around the sides of an end mill. A smaller number of flutes offers more space for flutes for long chipping materials like aluminum. A larger number of flutes reduces the space of the flute and offers increased productivity in shorter chipping materials like medium to high carbon steel and iron.

Four flute end mill is preferred for slotting applications for:

  • Steel
  • Stainless steel
  • High temp alloys
  • Iron

Higher flute counts must be reserved for applications with a low circular depth of cut to allow for chip removal.

End Geometry:

Selecting the right end mill geometry is vital to the success of the tool. Paying close attention to the materials that the manufacturer suggests for a tool can help to guarantee your success.

End Mill Coatings:

Coatings help in reducing friction and protecting the carbide from the heat that is produced in cutting. Some coatings are more appropriate for specific materials. Giving attention to the manufacturer’s recommendations is the simplest way to make sure you are using the correct coating.

Tool Life:

Don’t think that cheaper is not better. If you perform high production and heavy workloads, it is vital to invest in the right tooling that keeps up with the volume of work. Choosing inexpensive or poor tooling costs time and money on wasted material.

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