I am looking for advice on what end mill to use for cutting “rubber” soles for footwear. The material to be cut is similar to the soles found on Birkenstock shoes / sandals. It is 10mm to 13mm thick. I have cut some test pieces with Carbide #201 1/4" end mill that came with the machine, it cut fine but had a rough finish. I am trying to get these a smooth as possible. Any advice would be helpfull
I think I would try the O-Flute, single flute on this material. I may even consider freezing the material before cutting it.
And for once, the “conventional” style of cutting that CC seems to like so well will probably work better.!
Not sure how you are holding the material down but I made some jigs to cut thin material down. Take a look and see what you think.
@Tod1d suggested an o flute you could also try a #251 down cut 2 flute bit. By bolting down your jig to hold the rubber down it may cut cleaner. You could also experiment with a torch to clean up the edges similar what people use to clean up acrylic edges on cut out pieces on the Shapeoko.
Years ago when I was with General dynamics, I machined a lot of rubber material and I like to cut rubber using grinding wheels… size and finish was superb.
Do your rough cutting with End Mills and your finish cutting with grinding.
FYI Dremel makes a good assortment of wheels that can hold up to the speeds of your spindle.
Thank you, I will be ordering one today. I will report back with the results.
Those hold downs look like would work great for a number of projects. This rubber I will be cutting will be on a 24x36 sheet and I will be cutting approximately 12 - 16 pieces at one time.
I think I will be using a lot of two sided tape for this.
I picked up a couple of dremel bits yesterday and I am eager to give them a try.
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