We all know what a file means in the context of either office environment or a computer system but it has got a totally different meaning in context of mechanical engineering and has nothing to do with storing information or papers but is a simple yet equally effective hand tool used to remove the extra material from a work-piece by the act of scrubbing it over the latter. Learn about files, their types and uses in this article.
Files come in various types and are useful for different purposes and are usually manufactured out of very hard steel which is well-tempered. These properties ensure that they can remove the extra material with precision and do not get broken in the process. Some of the important files types are listed as follows.
Depending on the type of cut
Extra Rough Cut and Rough Cut Files
Both these types of files are used for the initial filing where the amount of material removed is quite a lot while precision is not a concern since it is normally carried out at the beginning of a filing operation.
Middle Cut, Bastard Cut and Second Cut Files
These types of files are used for intermediate operations after the heavy material removal is complete and before finishing the final smoothening out operation.
Smooth Cut and Dead Smooth Cut Files
These files are used for finishing the filing operation by smoothening out the irregularities which are left by the previous two operations.
In the above file classification is must be noted that the various types of cuts are made possible with the variation of teeth density of the file. A rough cut file and other coarse files have relatively less number of teeth per inch while the smoother files have the maximum number of teeth.
Depending on the shape of the shank
As the name itself suggests, these files have flat shank shape which have teeth on both sides and are mostly used for level filing work involving straight surfaces.
The blade or the shank of this type of files is round in shape and the teeth are formed on that round surface. The diameter of the whole shaft is uniform towards one end, while it slightly tapers at the outward end. These files are very useful in filing round shapes such as round holes or enlarging them.
These files are very similar in construction to the above mentioned round files with the only difference that the cross-section of the shaft is of square shape which is uniform towards the handle end but gets slightly tapered towards the outside end while maintaining its square shape.
There are still few other important file classifications which we will take up in the next article of the series.