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Getting the Most from your Diamond Tools (171kb)
Getting the Most from your Diamond Sawing Operation (125kb)
Select the Right Diamond Blade for your Application (151kb)
SMART CUT™ technology (761kb)

Metallographic Diamond Blade Case Studies


Diamond Wafering Blade Performance & Cutting Speeds

Case Study No. 1

New Generation Sintered (metal bond) diamond wheel with SMART CUT™ technology was tested against a conventional metal bond diamond wheel under similar conditions. Using three different materials, namely Aluminum, Brass, and Quartz, cuts were made to determine cutting times for all five diamond wheel types. Using a Model 650 Low Speed Diamond Wheel Saw, each diamond wheel blade was used for cutting the specified materials. Each specimen cut was a 12-millimeter diameter rod of material, helping maintain consistency during the cutting process. Specimens were first mounted onto a graphite plate, which was then mounted onto an aluminum mounting block. The entire system was then placed into the Model 65001 Single Axis Goniometer specimen mount of the Model 650. Specimens were mounted using MWH 135 low melting point wax (melting point at 100 degrees Celsius). The following diamond wheels were used in this experiment:

Wafering Blades Tested

Conventional Diamond Wafering Blade, Sintered (metal bonded) 4” diameter; 0.012” thickness; Mesh Size: coarse; Diamond Concentration: High

New Generation, Sintered (metal bonded) Diamond Wafering Blade. 4” diameter; 0.012” thickness; Mesh Size: coarse  Diamond Concentration: High. With SMART CUT™ technology.    

Each diamond wheel was used to make three cuts on each sample, with a total of nine cuts total per wheel. The diamond wheels were dressed with a silicon carbide dressing stick immediately prior to cutting. The following cutting parameters were used for each of the cuts made.  

Getting the Most out of your Diamond Sectioning Operation (747kb) - 12 pages

  Diamond Wafering Blades compare to BUEHLER, STRUERS, & LECO (889kb)      

Cutting Parameters

Load: 80 grams    Blade Dressing: Prior to each cut    Wheel Speed: 10 maximum on dial)      Coolant Density: 30:1

Each cut was timed and recorded, with each cut averaged for each sample and then plotted in a graph.

Results: New Generation, Sintered (metal bonded) Diamond Wafering Blades with SMART CUT technology cut substantially faster than Conventional Sintered (metal bond) diamond wafering blades. For all three materials.

Cutting Times of Various Materials Using Different Diamond Wheels

(All samples 12mm rods)

New Generation Metal Bond

Diamond Wafering Blades                              Conventional Metal Bond

Material             with SMART CUT™ technology                     Diamond Wafering Blades

Quartz                          4.5 minutes                                                 10 minutes

Aluminum                      26 minutes                                                 29.5 minutes

Brass                            25.5 minutes                                              33.5 minutes  


Case Study No. 2

A small rod of 100 steel: 6 chromium 15mm in diameter by 35mm in length was obtained for cutting tests. Three cuts were made to evaluate cutting time, surface finish, and accuracy of the cut (parallelism) using different diamond wheels. The surface of the part following cutting was inspected using an inverted optical microscope at low magnification to qualitatively compare surface roughness. The width of the sample following cutting (the thickness) was measured to determine if any significant variation was observed in the specimens. Finally, a comparison of cutting times was made to compare the wheel cutting efficiency as well. The sample rod material was cut using similar conditions for each diamond wheel.

The sample was mounted onto the Model 650 Low Speed Diamond Wheel Saw using a Model 65006 Vise sample holder. A water-soluble coolant was used to prevent excess heating during the cutting process, and was replenished after each cut. Cutting load was applied to the specimen directly onto the arm mechanism, and the counter-balancing weight was used to prevent wheel binding during the cutting process. A total cutting load of approximately 600 grams was used with the diamond wheel saw during each cut, and dressing of the blade was done periodically every hour during the cutting process.

Cutting times and thickness variations of diamond wheels cutting 100 Steel: 6 Chromium sample

Wafering Blade Type Cutting Time  Thickness (mm)    Variation (mm)

SMART CUT™ Diamond Wafering Blade

8 hours 1.940 – 2.070 mm     0.130
Conventional Diamond Wafering Blade 13 hours, 12 min 1.370 – 1.540 mm  0.170

Wafering Blades Tested:

New Generation Metal Bond Diamond Wafering Blade with SMART CUT technology Mesh Size: 120

Conventional Diamond Wafering Blade. Mesh Size: 120  Concentration: High     

Cutting / Sectioning Materials with a High Metallic Content

Case Study No. 3

Product: 10” x .040” x ½” New Generation metal bond Diamond Wafering Blade with SMART CUT™ technology

Application: Zr, Nb, Ti, Hf, and their alloys. These are very tough, ductile metals.

Saw Used: Struers Discotom 5 abrasive cut-off saw    Blade Life: 4 months  

Customer Comments: "We found that it worked well for cutting all of alloys and pure metals. It worked extremely well for sectioning carbide inclusions in Zircaloy. Before using your blade, we have had little success sectioning these types of samples." 

Case Study No. 7

Material: cobalt chromium

Specimen Size: 4.0" Saw: South Bay 650

Cutting Speed

SMART CUT™ New Generation Metal Bond Diamond Wafering Blade: 8 hours

conventional metal bond diamond wafering blade: 13 hours

Conclusion: SMART CUT Diamond Wafering Blade cut Cobalt Chromium 1.62 times faster


Case Study No. 4

Application: sectioning a client part consisting of a thick stainless steel disk bonded by a proprietary process to an alumina ceramic insulator.

Customer Comments: “ I had previously mounted this combo in epoxy and attempted to cut it on another manufacturer's low speed wafering saw using both their diamond blade and a wafering blade they had recommended for cutting metal. Both blades did well on the ceramic but even with constant dressing the cutting rate in the metal portion of the sample was infinitesimal and I gave up the effort after a whole day of effort. Your blade cut the same sample in approximately 15 minutes on the surface grinder and rates in the stainless steel portion were only slightly slower than in the ceramic. "

Case Study No. 5

Wafering Blade: 6” x .020” x ½”
Material: Low Carbon Steel
Specimen Size: 5/8”
Saw Used: Isomet 1000

Cutting Speeds in Minutes

Smart Cut™ Wafering Blades: 1.51 Conventional Blade: 5.15 

Conclusion: SMART CUT™ New Generation Metal Bond Diamond Wafering Blades cut Copper 2.32 times faster

Case Study No. 6

Wafering Blade: 6” x .020” x ½”
Material: Copper
Specimen Size: 5/8”
Saw Used: Isomet 1000

Cutting Speeds in Minutes

Cutting Speeds in Minutes

Smart Cut™ Wafering Blades: 5.59 min  Conventional Blade: 13 min 

Conclusion: SMART CUT™ New Generation Metal Bond Diamond Wafering Blades cut Copper 2.32 times faster

Examples of cutting times for Sectioning of Specific Materials 0.25" (6.4mm) diameter rod. Using various cutting speeds.

Material Blade Type Diamond Concentration Speed (RPM's) Load (grams) Estimated Cutting Time
Hot Pressed Silicon Nitride Si3N4 Series 20LCU Low 4,000 800 0:30
Boron Carbide B4C Series 20LCU Low 3,500 700 0:15
Sapphire Al203 Series 15LCU Low 1,500 300 0:40
Chromium Doped Sapphire Al203 Series 15LCU Low 500 500 0:20
Partially stabilized Zirconia ZrO2 Series 15LCu Low 2,500 500 0:38
Silicon Carbide, SiC Series 15LCU Low 2,500 500 0:16
Case Hardened Steel Series 15HCU High 2,500 500 0:16
Grey Cast Iron Series 15HCU High 2,500 500 0:25
Titanium Alloy Series 15HCU High 2,500 500 0:32
Zinc Alloy Series 15HCU High 2,500 800 0:15
Tungsten Carbide 6% cobalt binder, wC Series 15HCU High 4,500 900 0:15
Tungsten Carbide 25% cobalt binder, WC Series 15HCU High 1,500 300 1:55
High Purity fused silica SiO2 Series 15HCU High 2,500 500 0:40
Extruded Alumina, Al203 Series 15HCU High 3,000 600 0:40
Aluminum Nitride AIN Series 15HCU High 1,500 300 0:30
Nickel Zinc Ferrite Series 15HCU High 1,500 300 0:30
Manganese Zinc Ferrite Series 15HCU High 2,500 5,000 0:30
Yttrium aluminum garnet, YAG Series 15HCU High 3,000 600 1:15
8 micron graphite fiber reinforced zirconium diboride/molybenum disilicide composite Series 15HCU Low 2,500 300 0:20
White Cast Iron Series Metacut CBN High 2,500 700  
Thermal Spray Coatings Series 15HCU High 3,000 700  

What you should know before you buy your next diamond blade?



UKAM Industrial Superhard Tools  Division of LEL Diamond Tools International, Inc.

228231 Avenue Crocker, Unit 80  Valencia, CA 91355  Phone: (661) 257-2288  Fax: (661) 257-3833

e-mail: lel@ukam.com

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