Understand Dresser Options To Cut Costs
Focus on cost per piece
Stopping to sharpen the wheel means lost production, so it’s tempting to dress infrequently and to do it as fast as possible. Most shops know that’s a mistake, so they look for other routes to cut costs.
For some that means buying the cheapest single point dressers they can find. That’s often false economy. Instead they should try to minimize the dressing cost per work piece. That might mean buying better quality or more sophisticated dressers, which is why so many different types are offered.
The single point diamond dresser is the workhorse of grinding. It works in practically every application but is especially effective on straight wheels and for creating simple profiles. Special variants of the single point dresser are used for thread forms.
Diamonds aren’t cheap though, especially the better quality ones that better resist microcracking, so it’s important to get as much life from the dresser as possible. That means rotating the diamond regularly and changing the face exposed to the wheel to even out the wear.
Some diamond dressers are resettable, meaning the diamond can be reoriented to expose a fresh point. That adds to the cost but can mean an overall saving when compared with nonresettable dressers that are effectively throwaway items.
In multipoint dressers, several diamond points work together to dress the grinding wheel. They work well for straight pass grinding on larger OD wheels as well as surface and centerless wheels.
A special form of the multipoint dresser is the donut cluster. These consist of a large number of diamonds set in a large crown. Good for dressing large wheels quickly, they are especially recommended for use on cylindrical grinders.
Grit dresser tools
Continuing the progression toward more dressing points, these tools use a diamond grit rather than discrete diamonds. These are long-lasting and allow for rapid dressing, making them very cost effective.
Similar to a chisel in appearance, these present a line of diamond to the wheel. While they work for straight dressing, it’s more common to use them for profiles. Blade dressers come in both fixed and swivel head geometries for additional versatility.
Rotary diamond dressers
Rotary Diamond Dressers are a highly efficient and cost effective means of dressing and truing grinding wheels. Their use in achieving accurate correct form, tolerance, and condition is rapidly growing in the automotive, aerospace, power generation, machine tool and precision engineering component manufacturing.
Not an easy choice
There are several routes to minimize dressing cost per work piece and even for experienced machinists, it’s not always obvious which to take. That’s why it’s advisable to consult with experts to determine the best type of dresser for your application.