Metal Finishing Guide Book

2011-2012 Surface Finishing Guidebook

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Deburring: Burrs are removed, as if numerous little files were grinding on the part (Fig. 4). Radiusing: Sharp edges on the parts are ground off and transformed into smooth, round contours. Surface smoothing: "Peaks" are ground off creating a smooth surface. Polishing: A continuation of the smoothing process— decorative and functional surfaces are polished to a high gloss finish with extremely low Ra values (Fig. 5). Ball burnishing/ball polishing: Polishing of mainly aluminum and stainless steel parts with media made from stainless steel. Degreasing: Oily, greasy parts (e.g., stampings) are cleaned (degreased) and at the same time finished (deburred, radiused, etc.). Surface cleaning: Intensive cleaning of dirty parts (e.g., descaling, derusting) (Fig. 6). 12 media. Selection of the right media is key to the success of any surface finishing process. Hopefully, the information to follow will help pro- vide some pointers toward the right media selection. A VERSATILE TECHNOLOGY FOR MANY FINISHING APPLICATIONS Mechanical surface finishing, gen- erally referred to as "mass finish- ing," offers a wide range of finishing solutions. While the removal of burrs is the most commonly known application, mass finishing offers many other finishing solutions, of which the most important ones are: INTERACTION OF VARIOUS MASS FINISHING COMPONENTS Frequently, mass finishing is con- sidered a "low-tech" technology that is noisy, dirty, and wet. And many users do not pay enough attention to selecting the right components required to optimize their finish- ing operation. The results of such negligence are usually high finish- ing cost and a high scrap rate usu- ally requiring a lot of rework. All this could be easily prevented, if the users would pay a bit more attention to the optimum interac- tion of the various components involved in any mass finishing process (Table 1): Figure 7 shows an example of a vibratory mass finisher. VIBRATORY FINISHING MEDIA: A LARGE VARIETY FROM WHICH TO CHOOSE In the "old days," when the first mass finishing methods were devel- oped, media consisted of crushed grinding wheels, river pebbles, and slag. Over the last few decades, mass finishing media evolved into a high-

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