Milling styrene?

Once winter settles in for it's long & tiresome run, I'd like to get back to
a series of model projects I have started, eventually trying to re-create
the USS Kalamazoo. Among the usual suspects of metal content, I'd like to
try CNC milling some of the plastic components.
Any tips on how to accomplish this without melting?
Reply to
John Hofstad-Parkhill
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John, I have done this and hated it. But... Keep it wet, soaking wet with a spray bottle or such like. The coolant choice that worked was soapy water, the down side was that every cast iron or steel part that got wet rusted as the oil was washed away. The available coolants that didn't rust caused problems, crazing cracking and surface irregularities in styrenes. I concluded 1) Oil and synthetic coolants react w/ styrenes 2) Soap degreases and rust ensues 3) I like polycarbonates. Maybe others have had a better solution. Regards, Kent
Reply to
Kent Frazier
I have had a lot of success milling ASTM some number styrene plastic drain pipe caps, rather than ABS or PVC.
I use a sharp carbide fly cutter for all cuts, and I do some drilling. Feeds are slow. Air cools the work.
In general, in plastic, to avoid rusting the machine, I cool with isopropanol spray. Don't breath a lot of it.
And you go slow, remembering the proportion between feed and speed that gives a good chip load per tooth.
Why stryrene?
To read about my senior project at ODU, Go to Google Groups and enter dgoncz along with any or some of these words: ultracapacitor electric bicycle motor generator fluorescent energy display
Reply to
Doug Goncz

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