Cutting T-slots

I've never done this and wonder if the cutter should be the full width or
should you make multiple passes with a narrow cutter? I realize you'd do the
center slot with an end mill.
Same question for dovetail slots.
Reply to
Roger Hull
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The answer depends on how rigid your machine is. If you only have something "normal", you'd better only do one at a time. I've made many dovetail cuts, on my bridgy I had to go very slow and take maybe 0.025 at a time. On my CNC, I think DOC was about 0.100 with probably 6 IPM - could go faster here but only one side at a time. The monster Cincinnati that I had access to at trade school would have easily done a T slot both sides at once one pass.
On a T slot, geometry of the cut may force you to take both sides at once. Lock the gibs down tight on the axis you're not using, drag the gibs on the side you are. If you've got powerfeed, it works much better than by hand. Go slow and wait for that awful crunch sound that means its time to get another cutter. Use lots of coolant.
Reply to
Karl Townsend
Better to do multiple cuts but you may have to do it all in one pass if that is the size of the cutter that you have. If so, the cut is going to react just as if you were cutting a slot into a piece of the same metal - things will tend to walk and cutting will be interesting.
-- Bob May Losing weight is easy! If you ever want to lose weight, eat and drink less. Works every time it is tried!
Reply to
Bob May

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