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    Improving the Performance of a CBN Grinding Wheel

    Updated: February 26, 2024 Published: November 17, 2022

    CBN grinding wheels use the synthetic abrasive cubic boron nitride to easily grind tough, ferrous materials like high-speed tool steel. However, even superabrasives dull and wear over time, and will need to be dressed and re-trued occasionally. Two main aspects of the grinding process affect wheel performance, the quality of the grinding wheel and the quality of the machine. Let’s take a look at the best ways you can maintain and even improve the performance of your CBN grinding wheel.

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    To ensure your grinding wheel is performing optimally there are a few standards of operation you must follow. First, you must ensure the wheel is mounted on flanges and spindles that are clean, free of burrs or debris and the spindle bearings are tight with no play. Next, the grinding wheel needs to run at an optimal spindle speed (RPM) based on its diameter. This is a vital step to ensure proper wheel life, material removal rates, and surface finish. For CBN wheels, we recommend a SFPM speed of between 5500 and 7500 SFPM. You can calculate this using the formula below or download the SFPM calculator.

    Truing and dressing your grinding wheel are two essential actions to perform before executing your first cut. They are also necessary for general wheel maintenance. Truing removes both the bond and abrasive to create a smooth, even wheel shape that runs perfectly true to your machine spindle. Truing leaves the surface of the wheel glazed and not yet ready for cutting.


    Performing general maintenance on the grinding wheel surface to maintain wheel performance is very important, but we cannot forget that the machinery requires preventative maintenance of its own. The spindle bearings are a vital component to maintain. One of the most common issues experienced in the grinding process is chatter or unwanted vibration. Chatter causes your wheel to cut unevenly, produce a poor-quality surface finish, and cause premature wheel wear. Maintaining the spindle bearings on your machinery will prevent chatter and the unsatisfactory grinding result that accompanies it.

    In conclusion, these are the main ways to guarantee the best performance of your CBN grinding wheel.  To ensure successful execution from the start, make sure you’ve got the right operating conditions. Properly mounting the wheel and running it at the optimum SFPM will provide an excellent foundation for a great grind and will help your wheel perform better and last longer. Correctly preparing and maintaining the CBN grinding wheel surface by truing and then dressing the wheel. Finally, participating in routine preventative maintenance of grinding machinery discourages common production issues that waste time, material, and money. Practice preventive maintenance.

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