End Mills

Milling tools include flat, ball, bull nose and chamfer.

Figure 3.1: Mill Tool Nose Types

Flat nose mills are used for milling 2D contours and pockets. Ball nose mills are used for 3D milling. Bull nose end mills have a radius corner. They are used to create a fillet on the bottom of a wall. Because they are sturdier than an end mill they are also sometimes used for roughing operations. Chamfer mills have an angled nose used to create a chamfer or to de-burr parts.

Number of Flutes

Milling tools usually have either two or four cutting flutes. Two flute cutters provide more chip clearance when milling in close areas. Four flute mills are more rigid, can be fed faster, and are preferred when greater chip clearance is not required, such as when milling an outside contour.

Center-Cutting End Mills

Milling tools are either center cutting or non-center cutting. Center cutting mills can plunge straight down into material, while non-center cutting tools cannot.

Figure 3.2 below shows the cutting end view of a center cutting and non-center cutting end mill. Notice that the cutting edges of the center cutting end mill continues to the center of the tool. The center of the other has a small hole at the center. Non-center cutting end mills require a pilot hole, ramping or helical motion to plunge into material.

Figure 3.2: End View of Center and Non-Center Cutting End Mill