What Is a Milling Fly Cutter Used For?

Written by robin reichert
  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Share
  • Email

A fly cutter is a versatile tool for milling metals. The tool resembles a lathe tool bit, and it rotates rapidly above the piece of metal to be cut, grooved or smoothed. Most fly cutters have two cutting blades, which result in a superior smooth surface. You can use fly cutters to smooth aluminium and brass and to make gaskets, washers, gears and holes. Always wear eye protection when using a fly cutter, because it is designed to throw chips and curls of metal as it cuts. Also be aware of hot metal bits.

Cutting Gears

A single-point fly cutter is a superior tool for cutting gears, especially the tiny gears used in watches, clocks and older cameras that use a gear to wind film. Use the fly cutter to mill to the correct thickness and then smooth the surface of the gear blank. Cut the gears using a single-point fly cutter set to the appropriate angle for the type of gear that is being cut.

Cutting Holes

Use a fly cutter with a template to cut precision holes in metals such as aluminium. Cut a precision lightning hole in a wing template for an aeroplane or holes for wiring in electrical boxes or appliance covers. Use the routing template's master wood templates to guide a single blade fly cutter. Bolt two identical templates to the metal and centre the hole under the drill press with a fly cutter in place. The rapidly spinning blade cuts a smooth circle in aluminium with no need for filing.

Smoothing Surfaces

Use a fly cutter to achieve smooth metal surfaces. The rapidly spinning blades can sheer off as little as 20 thousandths of an inch for a precision flat surface on metal. Feed the metal through a milling machine slowly so that the surface is as smooth as possible. Put the mill on automatic feed so that the metal is fed at a steady pace.

Engine Parts

Circular holes in aluminium facing for automobile pistons are made using a fly cutter. You need the precision of a fly cutter, because pistons must meet exacting measurements. Tooling engine cylinder heads also requires the exactness of a fly cutter. You can set the fly cutter to remove a tiny amount of surface metal to within a few thousandths of an inch tolerance. The fly cutter is the perfect tool to smooth the surfaces of engine parts.

Don't Miss

  • All types
  • Articles
  • Slideshows
  • Videos
  • Most relevant
  • Most popular
  • Most recent

No articles available

No slideshows available

No videos available

By using the eHow.co.uk site, you consent to the use of cookies. For more information, please see our Cookie policy.