Understanding Round vs. Indexable Tools

This month, I’m highlighting an article about round and indexable tools that was written to help shops learn the differences between the two, including advantages and disadvantages, and which one may be better for a given application.

Although the path that leads to decisions metalworking shops make aren’t always black and white, Production Machining strives to provide our readers with valuable, well-researched information from reliable sources to help make these decisions less onerous.

This month, I’m highlighting an article about round and indexable tools that was written to help shops learn the differences between the two, including advantages and disadvantages, and which one may be better for a given application. The article, “Round vs. Indexable Tools: From the History to the Latest Developments,” defines round and indexable tools and offers information about these tools’ investment and maintenance, performance standards, and more.

Both round and indexable tools have their distinct advantage based on material, operation and requirements, according to the article. Round tools are traditionally made with HSS and solid carbide. Used in the most common, demanding applications today, HSS is tough, but not particularly wear-resistant.

However, indexable inserts are made from cermet (CT), ceramics (CC), cubic boron nitride (CBN) or polycrystalline diamond (PCD). CT has good flank and crater wear resistance and is not prone to built-up edge. CC has a wide application area in cutting hard materials (45-55 HRc) and has high resistance to abrasive and thermal conditions. CBN offers extremely hard high thermal resistance and is used in hard materials such as hardened steels and cast iron. Because PCD is extremely hard and brittle, it would not be a good choice for high hardness or impact applications.

For more information about round versus indexable tools, read the article here.