We at Swisset Tool can answer this with an emphatic YES!
After completing extensive testing, we definitely recommend using tool coatings on all steels including free-machining stainless steel. We recently tested coated tools on a mild steel and found tool life to be as much as three times longer than non-coated tools. We have many clients who use coatings, and they also found that tool life was increased significantly, even on 303SS which is normally easy on cutting tools. During our recent test on 1144, we found that the uncoated tools had to be sharpened after approximately 4000-7000 parts while the coated tools lasted between 11,000 -15,000 parts.
Discuss With Your Coating Vendor…
When discussing coatings with your coating vendor, keep in mind they may not be familiar with Escomatic machines in that most Esco parts are small and do not create heat. Escos also perform more of a light duty turning than the heavy roughing performed in larger work. Your Escomatic is also working in more of a controlled environment with flood oil than a CNC lathe or Mill which may not be as controlled of a work area. If you are running larger diameter bearing steels and find your tools to be burnt, you may get better results using ALTiN or TiCN. In order for these two coatings to work, you must have HEAT to get the coating to perform. If you use this coating on a steel that is not producing heat, we have found that you would have the same tool life as if you did not coat at all. If you’re cutting a tight tolerance groove, the Physical Vapor Deposition (PVD) coating process only builds up about .0001-.00015” on the edge of the tool.
For more information please feel free to call us — 603-524-0082.
We would be more than happy to discuss your Escomatic tooling needs.