Threading A Horizontal Wire EDM
A wire EDM machine designed for micromachining uses negative air pressure to thread the fine wire.
Makino’s UPJ-2 wire EDM machine orients the wire horizontally. This facilitates micromachining operations requiring fine wire, because the slug falls easily out of the way. One user of this machine is Hummingbird Precision Machine in Lacey, Washington. This video taken at Hummingbird shows how the machine threads the wire. Negative air pressure allows the machine to reliably thread wire as small as 20 microns in diameter.
In many die and mold shops, the choice between ram EDM and CNC milling is far less clear than it used to be. Changing technology is changing the rules.
A new breed of power generators for wire EDMs has options for reducing, even eliminating, one of the unwanted side effects of this very versatile metalcutting process.
Hummingbird takes on machining work that is too small for most shops to handle. In fact, Hummingbird tries not to handle it either. To accurately machine the tiniest parts, this shop relies on processes that are as hands-off as possible.