Methods of Milling
Given below are few of the most commonly used milling methods in the manufacturing industry. This list is certainly not exhaustive but only indicative of the wide variety of uses that a milling machine can be put to in the industry.
Single piece milling – this method is used for milling a single job work which is held on the milling machine. It is important to note that the piece has to be worked in a single machine cycle for it to be classified under this category of milling methods.
String milling is quite similar to single piece milling but the only difference being that instead of a single piece there are several parts which is simultaneously fixed and are worked upon.
Index milling refers to a special kind of milling operation wherein the machine is set to perform identical operations on a work piece. Each of these identical operations is performed one after the other by indexing the work piece into a new position. A very good example of such a process is the gear cutting operation wherein the gear grooves are cut in succession one after the other.
Copy milling technique refers to where a design or cut is difficult to make by itself, hence it is first made in the form of a master template which is turn is used to guide the tool path. Hence basically the template acts as an original from which the other parts are copied just like you would photocopy a document from an original paper in the Xerox machine.
Gang milling refers to the situation when a gang or group of cutters is used to simultaneously work on the work piece in order to produce the desired shape
Reciprocal milling refers to the process wherein the time taken to load and upload the job work from the fixture on the milling table is minimized by utilizing two fixtures which are ready at the same time for milling one after the other.
There are several other types of milling methods apart from these and each of these methods have their own unique features. The reader is advised to refer to any good textbook of Production Technology in case he/she is interested to gain advanced knowledge about this area of manufacturing technology