"We frequently respond to questions about when to use conventional or climb cutting
for the best finish, or how to best enter and exit a cut without creating damage on critical corners and edges.
Features also describe how to produce the shapes on Innovative's CNC machines, such as how and where material removal should occur; cutting depths; whether to use climb cutting
, to spot drill, or center drill; and preferred machining strategies for roughing and finishing.
On flat side grain surfaces, climb cutting produced a higher quality surface compared to conventional cutting.
Since both climb cutting and conventional cutting (tool directions) can occur in a router operation, it was an important effect to evaluate.
For solid wood, climb cutting (also called downmilling) is generally recommended over conventional cutting (also called upmilling) (Fig.
When climb cutting end grain, acceptable quality surfaces (quality grade of 2 or less) were produced, on average, with a feed per knife of 0.0111 inch or less.
In climb cutting flat grain surfaces, increasing the feed per knife had no significant impact on quality (Table 4 and Fig.
Z-axis machining better lends itself to consistency in another way, though: you can keep the cutter either climb cutting
or conventional cutting all the time, and consistency in this regard is crucial to the quality of finish.
DO NOT climb cut by hand because free hand climb cutting
tends to grab the part and overload the PCD tip, resulting in tool failure.
Tests have shown that more chipping occurs for climb cutting than for conventional cutting.
Figure 6 is a photograph showing the difference in chipping of the melamine surface for conventional and climb cutting.
Properly ground, a roughing end mill is equally efficient for conventional or climb cutting
. On work-hardening materials (e.g., Inconel), however, climb milling extends tool life and should be used whenever possible.