Wire Electrical Discharge Machining is the most precise form of machining available today. EDM uses an electrode of thin wire charged with high voltage electricity to remove metal by spark erosion. This process allows for precise intricate cuts in conductive metal material. Rapid AC or DC pulses are generated between the thin wire electrode and the metal being cut. There is no actual contact between the wire electrode and the work piece therefore no cutting forces are generated, allowing machining to extremely high tolerances.

The work piece is clamped on a precision mount which is submerged in a reservoir of de-ionized water. The thin wire electrode, from .004 to .012 in diameter, is continuously fed off a spool and cuts through the piece to be machined. The de-ionized water acts as a coolant for the work piece and flushes the small particles of metal away from the cutting point.

The wire, usually made of brass, is only used once, so issues associated with conventional machining, such as cutter wear, are non-existent. The Wire EDM process can machine 1 or 100 pieces to a tolerance of +/-.0002 and each piece will be the exactly the same through the entire run.

Using a state of the art Computer Numerical Control or "CNC" unit, the wire electrode is programmed to follow a set path. This CNC unit can be programmed to move all 4 axes independently to create tapered surfaces, such as slug relief on a stamping die or taper in a plastic injection mold. It can be programmed to cut detailed shapes on the top of a work piece and totally different detailed shapes on the bottom.

Wire EDM is ideal for delicate, burr free parts. The process can be used to cut pieces after heat treating, so dimensional accuracy is held and there is no heat distortion. Arizona Wire & Tool offers a 16 inch "Z" axis EDM machine for precision cutting larger pieces of metal.

 

In addition to EDM, Arizona Wire & Tool offers die design and production, as well as, tool and die work, including milling and grinding.

 

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