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Turning a Hardend Ball Screw

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WAE

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What is the best way to turn a ball screw in the mini lathe? I have to turn one down for my Fignoggle CNC conversion I am doing for my mini mill, and it is chipping and dulling my carbide tips pretty quickly :-[

Thanks!
 

toolsrul

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What is normally done is the ends are annealed (softened) then machined then heat treated. If that's not an option try a negative insert with a tough grade of carbide like a Kennametal KC850 & run @ 50 sfm dry. If your finish changes from shiny to dull your part is case hardened & you broke thru the case.
Rigidity is the key - spindle, holder, ways, feed screw, etc. Good luck.
 

spuddevans

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The other option is if you have ( or have access to ) a tool post grinder you can grind the ends to size. I imagine this would be a lot easier on the mini-lathe, but would most likely take longer than regular turning.

Depending how hard the ballscrew is it may be the only option if carbide isnt cutting it.

Tim
 

WAE

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Haven't been able to check this site after I first posted, but this is how I ended up completing it. I don't know if it was right or wrong - and I hope i didn't warp anything - but first I ground the threads off with my bench grinder, then took a propane torch and heated it until it turned red, then plunged it into a bucket of cement mix (it was sitting in a bucket from where the bag broke) and let it cool for an hour. Chucked it back into the lathe and it turned very easily!
 
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