What Kind of Materials Can Be Broached?
From linear broaching to rotary broaching, there are a wide variety of specialized ways to use a broach tool to create the components you need. If you’re looking for broaching services to manufacture bulk parts or create a small series of custom-made components for your company, you’ll want to work with these specific materials.
Popular Broaching Materials
Depending on the type of broaching tool and the broach company you’re working with, there are many factors that go into determining the best material for the project. In general, here are some common materials used in broaching:
- Stainless steel
- Alloy steel
- Cast or malleable iron
This isn’t an exhaustive list but does include the most popular and reliable materials. The best materials to use in a broaching machine are softer, but some high-tensile steel and other hard metals can also be successfully broached. Because of the diverse range of broaching machines available, the type of broaching machine can affect the type of material you use.
One of the most commonly used materials is machining steel. This material is designed to be used in various broaching applications and can allow a reasonably heavy cut. Depending on the hardness of your particular grade of machining steel, you can achieve a hook angle up to 20 degrees.
Brass is another popular option for broaching applications. Brass is a non-ferrous alternative that still gives you clean, accurate cuts. Aim for medium to heavy cuts for best use. Brass is capable of a zero-to-10-degree hook angle in most components.
Stainless steel, while durable and reliable for most parts, is difficult to broach. It tends to dull the teeth, particularly harder grades of stainless steel. Use medium cuts and aim for a hook angle between 15 and 20 degrees.
Finally, a non-metallic option is malleable or cast iron. You’ll need a team to inspect your particular application and iron in order to determine the success of your broaching project, but medium and heavy cuts can still be achieved. Look for six-to-eight-degree face angles for best use.
Ability to Broach and Other Factors to Consider
As you select one of the leading broach manufacturers to work with your project, you’ll discuss a number of factors that are crucial to a streamlined, efficient process. First, your material selection will be assessed based on its broach-ability. This is a general term to cover the various factors that are used to evaluate the efficiency of a particular broaching process.
For example, the type of metal plays a critical role in adjusting the speed and feed of the broaching machine used to create your components. The tensile strength of your particular material is measured and used to create the right setup. A higher tensile strength material is more difficult to broach, but talk to a qualified broaching specialist before ruling out your high-tensile project.
Materials that may seem too difficult to broach can still be worked with, provided they go through the right setup. For example, by pre-drilling the diameter of the hole or using a shallow-depth initial broach, a rotary broaching machine can still successfully broach high-tensile steel. Of course, working with high-tensile materials can quickly dull your broaching machine, so it may require additional servicing.
Create Custom Broached Products Today
Don’t let a high-tensile material or specialty broach design prevent you from taking advantage of the speed and precision of broach tooling. If you’re considering a specialty broaching project or using one of these common materials to make bulk components for your manufacturing facility, contact Miller Broach today. Our team is leading the way in providing precision broaching services to a range of industries. Let us work with you to create a personalized broaching solution that can save you time and money.