Broaching – What is it?
Broaching is a machining process that uses a toothed tool, called a broach, to remove material. There are two main types of broaching: linear and rotary.
- In linear broaching, the broach is run linearly against a surface of the workpiece to effect the cut.
- In rotary broaching, the broach is rotated and pressed into the workpiece to cut an axisymmetric shape. A rotary broach is used in a lathe or screw machine. In both processes, the cut is performed in one pass of the broach, which makes it
Broaching is used when precision machining is required, especially for odd shapes. Broaches are shaped similar to a saw, except the height of the teeth increases over the length of the tool. The broach is made of steel that has teeth, forming a series of cutting elements.
The broach contains three distinct sections:
- one for roughing
- another for semi-finishing
- and the final one for finishing
Broaching is an unusual machining process because it has the feed built into the tool. The rise per tooth or step determines the amount of material removed and the size of the chip. The broach can be moved relative to the workpiece or vice versa.
A broach is effectively a collection of single-point cutting tools arrayed in sequence, cutting one after the other; its cut is analogous to multiple passes of a shaper.
Many operations can be replaced by broaching, earning lots of time and requiring fewer tools.
Broaching works best on soft materials like:
- Copper alloys
- And even plastics
At PTL, we offer custom broaching for large and small parts. Call on us at PTL Fabricators if you’re in the need of custom broaching for your project. Give us a call at (931) 647-0675 or contact us today.