Edge Honing and ManufacturingThe manufacturing industry in America and abroad relies on edge honing services to ensure that manufacturing parts are kept well-honed, sharp, and functional in every respect. Ask a manufacturer – any manufacturer from the dawn of the industrial age to present day – about how well a dull cutting tool performs work, and they’ll simply shake their head. Sharp cutting instruments perform as they are expected to perform. This includes drills, gundrills, carbide inserts, endmills, reamers, taps, hob cutters, shaper cutters, spiral bevel stick blades, saw blades, and rock drills (to name a selection). Edge honing, however, can be a troublesome process, especially if the manufacturing line is without a proper edge honing system or service in place.

Edge honing is defined as “the creation of a controlled radius and the improvement of surface finish.” When tools and bits and blades are well-honed, the cutting edge meets the material to be cut with less friction. Additionally, less burrs are created around the cutting implement and the material. Regarding drill bits, edge honing also allows for better chip evacuation and a reduction in clogging.

The edge honing process, utilizing an edge-prep system from Mutschler Edge Technologies (MET), is a dry process that makes use of a highly-specialized abrasive nylon filament brush. The nylon brush is manufactured with edge honing in mind: a nylon carrier that is extruded along with an abrasive grain (aluminum oxide, ceramic, diamond, and silicon carbide). This specialized nylon brush is applied to the edge to be honed and the abrasive filaments act as a flexible file, sharpening or honing the edge or surface with every pass or rotation. The level of detail involved in the honing process can be controlled by the type of abrasive filament, the angle of the brush to the piece, cycle time, depth of engagement, centerline placement, and the speed (or rate) of rotation for the brush.

Going forward, as manufacturing in the U.S. continues to grow, edge honing will continue to be in high demand. No piece of manufacturing equipment that cuts or bores will stand up to repetitive use without losing its honed edge. Even incredibly-dense or hard material will require an ongoing edge honing treatment process. As with any hand-held cutting tool, such as a machete or a hunting knife, which are both typically forged from hard carbon steel, the regular edge honing process is required to prevent dulling and a dramatic reduction in functionality. A store that sells hunting knives also typically sells whetstones. And while these sharpening stones are perfectly acceptable for hunting knives and the like, an endmill, reamer, or hob cutter requires a highly-specialized edge honing machine and process. This is where a full-service edge prep or edge honing solution from a company such as MET can be of benefit to the manufacturing industry.

Mutschler Edge Technologies (MET) produces cost-effective edge-honing machines that enable companies to apply standard or custom-edge preparations to a wide range of cutting tools. Contact MET for a solution tailored to your needs.