Fly cutting, which is also called single point milling, is one of the most versatile milling operations. It is done with a single-point cutting tool shaped like a lathe tool bit. It is held and rotated by a fly cutter arbor. You can grind this cutter to almost any form that you need, as shown in Figure 8-34. Formed cutters are expensive. There are times when you need a special form cutter for a very limited number of parts. It is more economical to grind the desired form on a lathe-type tool bit than to buy a preground form cutter, which is very expensive and usually suitable only for one particular job.
Another type of fly cutter, which differs mainly in the design of the arbor, can be used to mill flat surfaces as in plain or face milling (Figure 4-34). The arbor can easily be manufactured in the shop using common lathe tool bits. This type of fly cutter is especially useful for milling flat surfaces on aluminum and other soft nonferrous metals, since a high quality finish can be easily obtained. Boring holes with this type of fly cutter is not recommended. Thearbor is so short that only very shallow holes can be bored.
Figure 4-34. Fly cutter arbor and special-formed cutters.
The single-point or fly cutter can be used to great advantage in gear cutting. AII that is needed is enough of the broken gear to grind the cutting tool to the proper shape. It can also be used in the cutting of splines and standard and special forms.
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