End mills are a form of milling cutters, which is the name of a cutting tool that is made use of in industrial mining. The major differences between end mills and drill bits are the geometry, manufacturing and what they are used for.

Drill bits can only be cut in one direction, that of the axial direction, but that is not the case with the majority of milling bits, which are able to be cut in the radial direction. The great majority of mills cannot be cut axially and it is those that can that are referred to as end mills.

You can find a great variety of end mills at RS Components.

Types of end mills and their uses

There are a variety of different types of end mills, all of which are used for different purposes.

Square end mills can be used for general applications in milling including the likes of plunge cutting, profiling and slotting.

Keyway end mills are made with cutting diameters that are undersized in order to create a tight fit between the keystock or woodruff key and the keyway slot that they have cut.

Ball end mills, which are also sometimes referred to as ball nose end mills, are made use of for the milling of contoured surfaces, pocketing and slotting. Ball end mills are made with a round cutting edge that can be utilised in the machining of moulds and dies.

Roughing end mills, which are also known as hog mills, are used for the quick removal of large sums of material while in the midst of heavier operations. There is little or no vibration as a result of the tooth design, but this does cause a rougher finish.

Corner radius end mills come with a rounded cutting edge and tend to be used when a specific radius size is needed. The angled cutting edge of corner chamfer end mills are more useful when there is no requirement for a particular radius size, but both types create longer tool life than is the case with square end mills.

Roughing and finishing end mills can be used in a number of different milling applications as they are responsible for the removal of heavy materials while also being able to accomplish a smooth finish in just one pass.

Corner rounding end mills are the end mills that are used for the milling of round edges. These end mills come with ground cutting tips that cut down on edge chipping while also strengthening the end of the tool.

Drill mills are multifunctional and can be utilised in drilling, chamfering, countersinking and spotting as well as many other types of milling operations.

Tapered end mills are manufactured with a cutting edge which tapers off at the end and can be useful for a number of different die and mould operations.

Choosing the right type of end mill to use for a project and the material involved will improve the quality of the work while also cutting down on the necessity for excessive hand-finishing.