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Bespoke Surface Grinding & EDM Sparking

Bespoke Surface Grinding & EDM Sparking

At TN UK, we have developed cutting edge processes to undertake modification to precision balls.

Whether it’s putting flats on balls, threaded holes, blind holes, or even a hexagonal pocket for an Allen key, we can undertake these complex modifications in a variety of materials, within our facilities in the UK.

Bespoke Surface Grinding for Hard Materials

Custom Surface Grinding

At TN United Kingdom we have the capability to surface  & or cylindrical grind hard materials such as Tungsten Carbide, Stainless Steel and Ceramic materials such as Silicon Nitride or Alumina Oxide AL203.

If you have requirements for other materials, please contact us.

Bespoke EDM Sparking and CNC drilling

Bespoke Surface Grinding for Precision Balls

TN UK have the capability to manufacture holes in hard materials via Electro Discharge Machining (EDM) and via CNC drilling. This can be performed in an array of different hard materials such as Tungsten Carbide, Stainless Steel and Alumina Oxide AL2O3.

All of our own Tungsten Carbide CMM Datum Spheres are spark eroded to enable us to attach the precision ball to the stem, via a pinning and bonded method.

Use Cases

Bespoke Surface Grinding Machine

We supply modified balls to a number of Industries, including Formula 1, Aeronautical, Space exploration, Steam Management Systems and Industrial applications.

Uses vary from Pull rod joints to Complex locking mechanisms, where the products need to withstand high forces. The uses of modified balls are unlimited.

Tungsten Carbide

Surface Grinding Machine

Tungsten Carbide cannot be conventionally drilled due to its high wear resistance. At TN UK we Spark Erode to enable a hole or cavity to be made. TN UK have over 25 years of experience in this highly complex process. We continue to invest in CNC and manual machines to undertake this process.

Bespoke Surface Grinding for Hard Materials

Our Quality Guarantee

Accuracy is our trademark at TN UK. We pride ourselves on our ability to measure and calibrate the products we manufacture. Housing some of the most sophisticated equipment in the world, our annually assessed UKAS lab means we guarantee the precision of the products we supply.

On top of that, we maintain regular and open communication directly with you and any relevant departments to ensure that you get exactly what you need when you need it.

We also offer a recalibrate service for your existing gauges, CMM Reference balls and Master Ball Sets. So you can rest assured that, whether we are supplying a new product or recalibrating an existing one, by meeting our strict standards, your company meets its strict standards (particularly important for other calibration assessed companies).



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    What is the surface grinding process?

    Surface grinding is an abrasive machining process where the material is held normally in wax and a diamond-encrusted grinding spinning wheel cuts the work piece making a flat or lapped surface.

    What is Surface Grinding used for?

    Removing excess material from a work piece.

    What is the finish of surface grinding?

    We can finish part to a tolerance of +0.1mm/-0mm

    What are the applications of surface grinding?

    When a customer requires a smooth flat surface finish.

    What are the advantages  of grinding?

    The machine obtains highly accurate dimensions. Can machine hard materials. A smooth surface can be achieved. 

    What is EDM sparking?

    Electrical discharge machining (EDM) is a controlled machining process for removing material. The machine uses repeated electrical discharges between two electrodes submerged in dielectric fluid, to erode and melt away the material a tiny bit at a time. Due to there being no physical cutting tool EDM spark erosion can produce complex shapes that would be difficult to produce with conventional cutting tools or CNC milling.

    How is the spark produced in EDM?

    The copper electrode, which acts as the cutting tool carries an AC current through it, as the electrode approaches the workpiece the current discharges as it reacts and jumps towards the metal. It is this reaction that causes the spark and an extreme amount of heat, which is the main factor in eroding away the material.

    What is the finish of surface grinding?

    An electrode is normally a round bar, often made of copper, that conducts an electric current through it. The electrode comes to a fine point at one end that allows the spark to be targeted very accurately on the material it is removing material from. 

    What are the two types of EDM machines?

    There are two types of EDM machines the sinking die EDM which is used for holes and a wire EDM, which can slice material through wire cutting and wire erosion. In principal the two machines work the same way, by passing and discharging current through the electrode/wire and causing an intensely hot spark between the electrode and the material to be machined. 

    How is material removed in EDM?

    Material is removed when the electrode of an EDM moves close enough to it. The strong current is passed through the electrode reacts to the nearby metal and causes both a spark and a huge amount of heat that literally melts and vaporizes the material away. 

    What are the advantages of EDM?

    As there is no direct contact with the material the EDM process allows you to produce holes in hard materials with extremely close tolerances. Cutting tight pockets, slots and producing thin walls in the material would be almost impossible without using electric discharge machining. 

    What is an EDM machine used for?

    EDM technology is used to remove hard materials from a product whether it being a hole or a cut. Due to the small surface area of the spark and the granular control an engineer has over its movement, spark machining is able to create elaborate shapes or extremely accurate holes. To control the heat and accuracy of the spark both the electrodes and workpiece are submerged, and worked on, in dielectric liquid (i.e fluid that doesn't conduct electricity).

    How is Wire EDM is different from EDM?

    The wire machine uses a thin heated copper wire to remove the material, this conducts an electric current that sparks and slices through the material as it moves. A standard EDM has an electrode that comes to a point and, along with being able to cut through a material.