Outline of Finishing Methods

In this Section, finishing as a surface generation process is broadly classified as follows.

"Finishing Methods Using Defined Cutting Edges." Many finishing processes use tools of well-defined geometry. Typical examples are turning, milling, and drilling.

"Finishing Methods Using Multipoint or Random Cutting Edges." As described in this title, many finishing processes use processing tools such as grinding wheels, abrasive belts, and abrasive slurries such that the surface generation process takes place between the work material and a number of cutting edges whose geometry is not precisely defined in each case.

"Nonabrasive Finishing Methods" are those in which surface generation takes place without any mechanical interaction between the processing tool and the work materials. These are generally described as nontraditional machining methods. Typical examples are electrochemical machining, electrical discharge machining, and laser machining.

"Mass Finishing Methods."The methods described in the articles mentioned above usually deal with only one or a few work materials or components at a time. However, a number of processes deal with surface modification of a large number of parts at the same time. Typical examples are tumbling and barrel finishing. Shot peening can be classified as a mass finishing method; however, because of its importance and unique characteristics, it is described in a separate article in this Section.

Every finishing method may be characterized as ultraprecision, precision, or rough, depending on the nature or scale of the output of the process, as shown in Fig. 3. The technology drivers described earlier push the advancements in all these methods, and the directions for such advancements are also shown in Fig. 3. The articles mentioned above describe these precision aspects and the trends for advancement in finishing methods.

Fig. 3 Classification of finishing methods based on surface generation process and surface characteristics
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