Chemical machining, also referred to as chemical milling, is the process of using chemicals to extract or remove unwanted metal for a metal surface.
This process is typically utilized when other more traditional methods are either unable to easily perform the task or the desired final product is too intricate or complex to complete.
Chemical machining is often used for application where precise is vital such as micro components or in the electronics field where traditional machining processes could damage the surface and overall product.
Chemical machining is very precise as the areas that are desired to remain are protected from the chemicals which insure that only unwanted metal is removed. This form of manufacturing is used for a number of different industries from the aerospace industry to the automotive industry.
While chemical machining is often seen as a non-traditional method of manufacturing, it has actually been around since the nineteenth century and is considered to be the oldest nontraditional machining processes still in use today. The reason that it is so prevalent still, is that overall the process is pretty simple.
The surface is cleaned and the desired patterned is masking out leaving only the parts that are to be etched exposed. From here the metal surface is lowered into a chemical solution which will eat away at the exposed metal.
This process is controlled by a number of factors from the time that the material is submerged to the temperature and the concentration of the chemical solution. Once the product meets the final requirements it is removed from the chemical solution and cleaned. So while the actual chemical machining process is pretty simple and straight forward, the real work comes in the preparation stages.
Knowing and understanding which chemicals to use for certain types of materials in order to get the best result is what sets the experts apart from the beginners. This is why finding an experienced, trusted leader in the chemical machining industry is vital to receiving a product that meets your requirements and expectations.
If done properly the chemical machining process will leave behind a final product that is exactly what you ordered, free of any imperfections. Traditional machining methods can often leave behind some surface damage such as burrs or simple add unnecessary stress to the metal.
In addition to this advantage, chemical machining is often more cost effective as tooling costs are minimal, manpower is minimal and the process itself is rather quick.
To learn more about the chemical machining process and if it is right for your application, seek out a manufacturer who is skilled in this process today.
Chemical Machining Informational Video