Reasons to Choose Wire EDM Services

What is Wire EDM?

Wire Electrical Discharge Machining (Wire EDM for short) is a precision engineering process which custs metal into your desired shapes using electrical sparks. 

Wire EDM can be used when a feature would be difficult or otherwise impossible to achieve using conventional methods: for example, small slot generation, square corners, and complex geometry shapes. The process can be used on hard materials and allows a greater degree of positional accuracy. This is due to the machine having next to zero cut force, which allows the use of linear motors as opposed to conventional ball screws.


Wire EDM Method

Wire EDM is a process whereby a thin wire is used as an electrode to cut along a programmed path. The workpiece is submerged in a dielectric fluid (which increases the water’s resistivity), allowing for the generation of an arc at the wire, which in turn disintegrates the workpiece. The machine uses a spool of wire that moves continuously to offer a fresh section of wire throughout the cutting process. This results in an incredibly repeatable process.


Advantages of Wire EDM

The advantages of Wire EDM include:

  • Excellent surface finish. Since there is no physical contact between the workpiece and the material, the risk of tool marks, burrs, and other surface imperfections seen in convention methods is mitigated.
  • High degree of accuracy. The lack of contact reduces the risk of workpiece deflection, and the CNC method revolves around machine-programmed instructions that reduce human error.
  • Versatile results. Wire EDM allows us to machine features that would be very difficult or impossible using conventional machining methods.
  • Flexible compatibility. Wire EDM is suitable for hardened and exotic (conductive) materials that aren't commonly seen in the manufacturing industry.
  • Precise. Wire can be threaded through a pre-existing pilot hole to allow access to internal features.


Disadvantages of Wire EDM

The disadvantages of Wire EDM include:

  • Doesn't support blind holes. In a Wire EDM process, the wire must pass through the entire part which means this process is not suitable for ‘blind-hole’ applications.
  • Time consuming. If speed is your main goal, then you might want to consider alternatives to Wire EDM, since the process can be time-consuming depending on the amount of material to be removed.
  • Residue. Brass, particles or dielectric fluid can sometimes be found on the part post-machining.
  • Tight tolerances. The tighter the tolerance the more cuts required to hold, because tighter tolerances necessitate finer adjustments and smaller increments during the machining process.


PCML’s Wire EDM Services

Here at PCML, we offer the following Wire EDM services:

  • We have invested in four CNC Wire EDMs offering a 0.05mm – 3.0mm electrode diameter and a maximum taper angle of ±20° (generated using U and V Axis).
  • Sodick AG600L – X600 x Y400 x Z350
  • Sodick AQ325L – X325 x Y250 x Z200
  • Excetek V350G – X350 x Y250 x Z220
  • Excetek V650G – X605 x Y400 x Z350
  • K1C Hole Driller  – used for putting in start holes for WEDM, drilling exotic materials, angular drilling and removing broken tooling to a maximum hole depth of 200mm (Styluses range from 0.25 – 3.0mm) PCML current styluses 0.3, 0.6, 0.8, 1.2, 1.5, 2.0, 2.4, 3.0mm

These machines can work with parts weighing up to 1,000Kg. Our highly qualified team of engineers manage each and every job through to ensure all parts are delivered to the exacting standard expected by the PCML Group and our customers alike.

Fill in our contact form or call 01223 293904 to start your project with us today.

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