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Abrasive Flow Machining

A reliable source for Abrasive Flow Machining information and leading Abrasive Flow Machining Companies.

AFM, often referred to as abrasive flow deburring or extrusion honing, is a method of internal surface finishing that involves passing an abrasive fluid through a work piece. Abrasive flow machining forces a semi-liquid, abrasive material through or over a workpiece to polish surfaces and edges. Only in areas where the media flow is restricted does abrasion occur; other regions are unaffected. It can simultaneously process many chosen sections on a work piece, including unreachable locations. Read More…

Abrasive Flow Machining Abrasive Flow Machining (AFM) is a secondary water jet machining process used to smooth, polish, radius, and remove cracks and burrs from hard to reach or internal surfaces of machinery, parts and products. It uses a polymer resin and abrasive materials, which are called media, in water under pressure to reach bends, cavities and edges.
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Leading Manufacturers

Bellmawr, NJ  |  800-210-5000

For over 100 years, Mercer Gasket & Shim has been a leader in the waterjet cutting industry. Our highly equipped professionals work alongside our customers to ensure that we are meeting their needs. Mercers Gasket & Shim has perfected our techniques over the years in order to serve the needs of diverse markets.

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Mercer Gasket & Shim $$$

Tucker, GA  |  866-500-6098

Cutting Experts has worked with our clients to custom make products for their needs since 1977. We have expert staff, a wide variety of materials, and the best technology available. Our clients work hand in hand with our experts to create a product that has unrivaled craftsmanship. As the industry grows, Cutting Experts strives to continuously be the best in the industry.

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Cutting Experts $$$

Kearny, NE  |  308-627-6533

Mach 1 Manufacturing is one of the best waterjet cutting manufacturers in the industry. Our advanced technology and expert team allow us to cut complicated, detailed designs into a wide range of materials. Our large waterjet cutting bed is 24 feet by 6 feet and can cut materials that are up to 8 inches thick.

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Mach 1 Manufacturing $$$

Anaheim, CA  |  714-278-9874

Advanced Waterjet & Laser is a precision waterjet cutting and laser engraving shop that has the capacity to cut virtually any solid up to 6" thick including stone, plastic and metals. We have developed a very successful glass cutting technique as well. We cater to the smaller run with no minimums. What can we cut for you?

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Advanced Waterjet & Laser $$$

Glens Falls, NY  |  518-798-5462

Barton International is a leading manufacturer and provider of abrasive blasting and waterjet cutting services. With more than 142 years of operation and five generations of the Barton family's leadership, we have cemented ourselves as one of the most trustworthy names in the industry. Today, we have forty stocking locations across North America and have expanded our product offering to more than 3000 Waterjet parts. Visit our website to learn more about our products or make an order.

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Barton International $$$

Grand Rapids, MI  |  616-453-4360

Precision Wire EDM has been a leader in the waterjet cutting industry since 1991. We are known throughout the industry for our high quality and fast turnaround times. In addition, precision Wire EDM offers 24/7 service to help meet the needs of our customers. We are ISO 9001:2015 certified.

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Precision Wire EDM $$$
placeholder image Mercer Gasket & Shim Cutting Experts Mach 1 Manufacturing Advanced Waterjet & Laser Barton International Precision Wire EDM

abrasive flow machining

One fixture can process several or even dozens of pieces, resulting in production speeds of up to hundreds of parts per hour. Changing the process parameters produces different outcomes. Even in production settings, tooling can be created so that it can be modified in a matter of minutes. The surface finishes produced by the AFM method often improve by 90%, and stock removal may be controlled to within 10% of the stock removed.

How Abrasive Flow Machining Works

The abrasive-filled fluid runs through the item during the extrusion honing procedure to erode it. The elevated features on the surface are removed as it comes into contact with the abrasive fluid, similar to how sandpaper removes wood splinters. Hydraulics push the fluid through during the process. No areas are overlooked since the putty-like material may mold itself to the exact shape of the item chamber. Abrasive Flow Machining can be used as a two- or one-way flow technique.

A semisolid abrasive media is extruded back and forth through passageways created by the work piece. The process is abrasive only in the extrusion area, where the flow is constrained. The abrasive media gently and uniformly hones the surface or edges, simulating a grinding or lapping procedure. This technique helps shape materials ranging from soft aluminum to strong nickel alloys, ceramics, and carbides.

afm process

Applications of Abrasive Flow Machining

  • AFM is used in the automotive Industry to enhance uniformity and surface quality of finished products. The automotive industry often uses radiusing -a method of creating a consistent radius for rounded edges. AFM also helps polish engine parts to increase efficiency and reduces emissions.
  • The aerospace industry uses AFM to improve the texture of products. This increases cycle fatigue strength.
  • The die and mold industry uses AFM to lower production costs while maintaining uniform and quality products.
  • The AFM process is also used in the medical industry through deburring. Deburring removes extra material from components that have been cut, drilled, or burred. This is crucial for objects like needles and cannulas that are injected into people.
afm in automotive industry

Benefits of Abrasive Flow Machining

  • Versatility: Any metal, including titanium, super alloys, and materials that have been hardened or are otherwise challenging to mill, can be processed using AFM.
  • Precision: Targeted and challenging spots, such as cross-drilled and intersecting holes, can be emptied of component material by AFM.
  • Efficiency: A single pass can finish the roughing and finishing of the workpiece.
  • Customizability: The abrasive media can be developed to meet the demands of a given application.
  • Consistency: Technique control offered by the AFM process ensures excellent reproducibility and constant quality.

Drawbacks of abrasive flow machining

  • The process is very expensive and is also not usable on soft or ductile products
  • Processing of blind holes is very complex

Abrasive Flow Machining Informational Video


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