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A dust free trimming solution for composites

News International-French

14 Oct 2015

Due to customer demand, and as part of continued development of ‘dust free’ trimming & repair equipment for composite materials, Dark Matter Composites launches its "Small air router kit".

A lightweight Dynabrade air motor is fitted with a bespoke extraction shroud and is small enough to hold in one hand, only weighing 830g in total. The shroud has been designed to get the best dust capture around the full tool head, allowing it to be used in any direction.  During extensive customer trials, the router has proven to be effective at trimming solid glass and carbon laminates as well as sandwich panels with foam and honeycomb cores.

The small routing kit is supplied with bespoke fluted diamond cutters, with two grit sizes, to remove material along the laminate leaving a clean edge. The small, easy to handle router is highly effective when trimming both intricate and large parts in open shop floor areas and on-site. It is particularly suited to marine production, sandwich panel fabrications, construction sites and aerospace parts that do not fit into a trim room.

During trials, the tool was also used with a standard carbide cutter, to mill aerospace grade aluminium blocks embedded within sandwich panels. The material was removed dry, without the use of cooling fluid, with all the aluminium shavings captured at the cutting head. This makes the router an idea tool for production and rectification work.

The base of the extraction shroud has been designed as a jig follower, providing a 10mm offset from the cutters edge, making routing activities quick and accurate. Depth adjustment is also provided with a scale in 1mm, 0.25mm and 0.05mm increments, cutting panels up to 15mm thick. The base is threaded to allow fitment of bespoke followers/guides to suit the users needs, if required. The tool is provided with full vacuum and airline swivel connections to allow ease of handling.

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