People unfamiliar with cutting blades might be slightly confused about the difference between end mills and drill bits. It’s fairly simple: the main difference becomes clear when you take a closer look at the shape and geometry of the bits and its flutes. This process differs from other operations due to the cutting teeth on the sides and end of the mill, the main difference compared to other cutters like drill bits. A drill bit is designed to cut (drill) directly into the material and create holes in the axial direction only. End mills can cut laterally into the material and create slots or profiles. Some types even cut in all directions and are therefore more flexible allowing for profile, tracer or face milling, plunging, contouring, slotting, drilling, and reaming operations.
Here's 4 ways to identify an end mill
1. End Mills cut rotationally in a horizontal, or lateral (side to side) direction whereas a drill bit only cuts straight down, vertically into the material.
2. End mills are available in a wide variety of lengths, diameters, flutes and types, and are chosen according to the material they are cutting and the surface finish required for the project.
3. End mills are the cutters of the milling world and are used for slotting, profiling, contouring, counter-boring, and reaming.
4. End mills allow for precision parts to be cut, anything from machine parts, jewellery designs, wood engravings, sign making, plastic cutting, mold making and circuit boards.
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