Video: Tools Making Tools

One episode of the Discovery Channel’s “How It’s Made” focuses on the manufacture of industrial cutting tools.


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I was perusing Twitter the other day when this YouTube video caught my eye. Although I have often appreciated the fascinating Discovery Channel show “How it’s Made” for bringing metalcutting into the living rooms of the general public every once in a while, I wasn’t aware that an episode had been dedicated to the manufacture of industrial cutting tools. I think it’s well worth a look. For one, it’s pretty neat. Beyond that, it serves as a reminder of how many layers there are to manufacturing. That is, tools are made by tools, and the time and effort involved in using any variety of production equipment effectively may well be equivalent to what was required to manufacture it in the first place.

Although the video focuses on solid tools, I find the various processes employed to manufacture carbide inserts just as interesting. In fact, watching this reminded me of a visit to Germany three years ago, where I got a first-hand look at P.H. Horn’s insert manufacturing process. Here’s a virtual tour of that operation as it looked then.

Finally, feel free to connect with me on Twitter, where I discovered this video in the first place: @MMS_MattDanford