Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Quick Tip on Separating Discs

Separating discs are very useful in scoring metal for bending and when cutting tool steel like graver blanks.  The discs are very hard but brittle.  I use to get really nervous when using these discs to cut because I keep wanting to see if I'm cutting at my marked line or not.  Here's a quick tip to make the task easier.

1.  Here I mark a line for cutting.
2.  As you can see, you can't see through the disc.  It's like trying to drive in thick fog.

3.   I use my pliers to make a notch on the disc.  How much to break off?  If the notch goes all the way to the screw edge of the mandrel, then it's too deep.  Even with the notch, it will still cut like a new round one.
4.  Now I mount the disc back on the flex shaft after the "enhancement."
5.  See how I can see through the notched disc?  Now I can cut or score with more confidence.
6.  Another look at the modified disc at high speed.

And of course, ALWAYS wear eye protection when using separating discs.  A dust mask is highly recommended as that disc can kick up a lot of dust.

(This post also appears on the EtsyMetal Blog.)


Judy said...

Thanks, T! I'm gonna look so smart at school next week.

betsy bensen said...

you are a genius! Great tip!