Most often people use their CNC routers to cut wood or acrylic however; you can use your router to cut aluminum if you do it correctly. Here are five tips to help you.
1. Work Out Your Feed and Speed Rates
You need to take your time with aluminum; it’s not the same as routing wood. This is why you need to calculate your feed and speed rates. The best way to do this is to use and online feed rate calculator.
2. Use Carbide Bits
Carbide-coated cutters can handle the high RPMs that you need for routing aluminum. Even high-speed steel and cobalt won’t be able to handle the job. Don’t forget to tell you feed and speed calculator that your bit is carbide-coated; it will give you more RPMs.
3. Use a Misting System
A Mister system will help cool down the bit as it cuts through the aluminum extending its shelf life and helping retain the integrity of the material.
4. Frequent Shallow Passes
Don’t make the mistake of trying to take deep cuts to save time. It won’t work with aluminum. Make many shallow passes to reach your desired depth, that way you’ll have better access, and it will be easier to remove your chips.
5. Watch Your Flutes
You may be used to using a four-flute cutter for your woodwork, however when you’re cutting aluminum, a three-flute cutter is your maximum. This will prevent overly large chips which can cause your router to jam. Don’t forget, fewer flutes also require a slower feedrate which your CNC router will be able to handle better.
We stand by every machine we sell, and when it comes to top quality CNC machines, technical support and service, we are second to none. Call us at CAMaster today. We are always ready to answer all your questions about CNC routers from machine specs to getting the most from your router.