Tungsten Carbide Tips

Update: 2015/11/12      View:
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Tungsten carbide tip is not solid tungsten carbide. They are made of grains of tungsten and carbon held together in a matrix of metal such as cobalt or nickel. There are many different grades of tungsten carbide. Refer to our carbide and advanced material section for more articles on carbide.

Tungsten carbide can be called a powdered metal because tungsten is a metal. It is also classified as a ceramic. Ceramics are often defined as a class of materials that are not anything else. It can actually make the most sense to think of tungsten carbide as a ceramic when you are using it and a powdered metal when you make it.

Tungsten and most metals arrange themselves in a lattice which is like a 3 D version of a chain link fence. Under great heat and pressure the carbon atoms are actually packed inside the tungsten atoms instead of being joined side by side as with ordinary compounds.

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Interstitial carbides, such as tungsten carbide (WC), form when carbon combines with a metal that has intermediate electro negativity and a relatively large atomic radius. In these compounds, the carbon atoms pack in the holes (interstices) between planes of metal atoms. The interstitial carbides, which include TiC, ZrC, and MoC retain the properties of metals.

Our tungsten carbide components are made from alloy powders produced in house and we can offer a full range of compositions and physical properties. We have presses for the production of a range of bulk products and our machining facility allows the production of complex designs and includes CAD/CAM.

Tungsten carbide tip do get dull eventually. You sharpen them using the same techniques you would use with tool steel, but because they are so hard, you use a different abrasive. Something coated in diamond or a carbide abrasive wheel is common.

Tungsten carbide tip are very common material on any sort of cutting tool: For example, saw blades, lathe bits, drill bits, router bits and dental drilling tips are generally made of carbide. Carbide is so popular in these sorts of tools because it stays sharper longer than most other materials. Additionally, some ball-point pens use carbide balls because it helps the pen last longer.

With something like a carbide-tipped saw blade, the main body of the blade is made of steel. The small tips of carbide are brazed on to the body. A good carbide tip might hold an edge ten to twenty times longer than a tool steel tip.

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