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Quality and productivity for the machining of composites - Aeronautics Report

The French manufacturer Evatec-Tools designs wear-resistant tools, one of the main constraints in the machining of composite materials.


Composite machining

The structural complexity and extreme strength of composite materials impose new requirements on the world of cutting tools. As a tool designer and manufacturer, Evatec-Tools is a leading French player in the manufacture of tools dedicated to the machining of composite materials.

Composite materials present numerous constraints for machining such as structural heterogeneity, abrasive tool wear, risk of delamination or tearing. These stresses put a strain on the cutting tools. Achieving performance in the machining of composite materials depends on the choice of essential factors: the choice of tools, the choice of cutting geometry, the choice of tool material and the cutting conditions.
As Benjamin Julliere, Technical and Industrial Director, explains, "Our complete mastery of the tungsten carbide manufacturing chain and our know-how in 5-axis sharpening give us the possibility of creating innovative carbide tools where high-speed steel tools are usually offered. The main improvement is seen in the tool's resistance to wear, which contributes to longer tool life. For our customers, the cost per metre machined is an essential factor, and with this type of tool we are able to make significant economic gains.

In Moselle, Evatec-Tools has equipped itself with a new 5-axis Saacke robotized grinding machine, for its market of solid carbide rotary tools, intended for the machining of composites and honeycomb materials.
Evatec-Tools is particularly dynamic in the aeronautical sector and has seen the share of this market in its turnover increase from 16 to 20% in two years. Indeed, the group has a range of tools optimized for all types of applications: contouring, face milling, 5-axis milling and drilling of honeycomb, laminate or sandwich structures.

Evatec-Tools is...

Four production units in France, each with its own speciality: Evamet: carbide grades for cutting tools or wear parts. Create Outillage: carbide and steel tools for cold heading and extrusion. GMO : tool bodies and attachments. Evatec : CBN, PCD and ceramic cutting tools and monobloc rotary tools.

The renewal of production equipment, which is part of the strategic plan, as well as the deployment of lean manufacturing, will enable the Tricolor group to remain competitive in France, and responsive, in a very competitive carbide tool market.

A sales force composed of six technical sales representatives, including one in Quebec. Field representatives who all have a technical background and workshop experience. The combination of these two skills is essential to meet the demands of the Group's customers, demands that often involve technical support and tool start-up.