Introduction to Vibratory Deburring
What does the term “burr” mean? Burr refers to the damages, roughened or sharp edges left behind on parts from tools or machines, including actions such as grinding, engraving, milling, or turning. These machine-operated actions apply force on parts, leaving behind burrs. These burrs affect the functionality of the parts, removes protection, lowers life-span, increases maintenance, cause friction, and cause many other damages to the parts.
That’s why we consider deburring, which is the process of smoothening rough edges on parts caused by machines or tools which increases the life-span, quality, reliability, handling, protection, functionality and durability, and the effectiveness of parts.
Burrs have many negative impacts on the functioning, life-span, and effectiveness of parts. There are a few ways that burring impacts functioning of parts, for example:
- Increase vulnerability to fractures due to increased levels of stress
- Increases heat and friction
- Poor lubrication due to high levels of wear-and-tear on surfaces
- Lower the fatigue life (the amount of stress that material can withstand before failing)
- Increase the amount of material failure due to damages
- Increase in the level of corrosion causing higher risks
- The concentration of electrical charge causes static imbalances
- Makes the handling of parts unsafe
What is Vibratory Deburring?
Vibratory deburring process is the technique of parts and turning media, which is subject to a gyratory by a vibrating mechanism. The vibration moves the parts and media around, with results being polished and high quality.
A variety of metals, plastics, and even some wood components produced on a mass scale requires this kind of deburring. Vibratory deburring machines are commonly found next to CNC laser cut, milling, or waterjet cut forms of operations and are used in various industries.
Advantages of Vibratory Deburring
Vibratory deburring is one of many techniques that can be used to complete the process of deburring, whether it’s manual, thermal, electrochemical, among many others. The process of vibratory deburring is reputable due to its advantages.
Below are key benefits in using the vibratory deburring method, for example:
- The machines don’t easily breakdown
- Reproduction of identical parts are easy
- It’s suitable to use on delicate or fragile material
- High level of efficiency in completing large projects in a short time
- This method is cost-effective
- Minimal labor required
- Decreases imperfections in parts which increase the surface appearance
- The bearings of these machines have life-time protection
- Low on maintenance
How does Vibratory work?
Vibratory deburring is known to form part of the vibratory finishing process.
Firstly, the process chamber lined with a rubber guard or polyurethane is attached to a spring base. The shape of the chamber is circular with a center plate where the motor is attached.
There are weighted segments which are attached to the motor of the process chamber. After that, it begins vibrating at 1500 RPM, which is the rotational speed of this motor. The abrasive media is applied to parts, which removes the excess rough edges and burrs from damages caused by machines. The damaged parts are then put in a deep rotating container that vibrates.
The vibration of the vibratory machine causes the abrasive media in the process chamber to move in a rotating manner. Vibratory deburring occurs due to the abrasive media smoothening the surfaces of products. The products are polished and free from burrs.
Depending on the method used for deburring, it can be done dry or wet. The technique is dependent on the type of abrasive media and compound being used.
Four Types of Media
Four main types of abrasive media are used in the deburring process for various purposes, including ceramic media, steel media, plastic media, and organic media.
1. Ceramic media
Ceramic media can be used for heavy metals and heavy cutting. It can also be used for light and heavy deburring processes. Ceramic media is ideal for general polishing and tough metal removal from parts.
2. Steel media
Stainless steel and hardened carbon are produced from steel media that apply pressure to remove the burrs, polishing, and the burnishing of stainless steel and for aluminium.
3. Plastic media
Plastic media can be used for deburring metal, pre-paint finishes, and quick and heavy cutting. Accurate deburring, burnishing, and polishing are results of deburring. This process results in a smooth finish with minimal shine and is also suitable for the preparation of parts for anodizing and threads.
4. Organic media
Organic media is used for the process of drying parts after they’ve been through the vibratory finishing. Additional use of organic media is for producing glossy finishes on components like stainless steel, aluminum, and other metal products when blended with the polish. Organic media is the most common type of media as they are natural, durable, and reusable.
When using abrasive media for deburring, size is to be considered. Smaller media is best suitable as they produce smoother finishes and the appealing surface of parts. However, using smaller media takes a bit longer but produces flawless results. The larger the surface of the media, the faster the results will be. Therefore when you are aiming for successful deburring, selecting the right media is important.
Uses of Vibratory Deburring
The medical and engineering industries are two of many industries that make use of vibratory deburring for their parts. The success of the deburring process is dependent on the type of media used, the amount of chemicals, water, and time. Also, vibratory deburring results in producing flawless surfaces of parts.
Vibratory deburring can be used for a variety of reasons, whether for removing roughened edges, polishing, or burnishing of parts. Deburring is a cost-effective and efficient process that produces flawless surfaces, longer life-span, and low on maintenance on parts. Due to technological enhances of vibratory deburring, the production process of parts over the years has been more successful than before. Nowadays, manual processes can be automated and robotic deburring is gaining importance in the production and industrial sector. Robotic Deburring is used to automate weld removal and provides several benefits over manual deburring.