Types of CNC Tool Holders and How They Work

custom tool holders

While machining tools are obviously integral to machine shops, special tool holders are just as important in the grand scheme. The right tool holder ensures precision, whether you’re tasked with cutting or drilling. A quality tool holder can also save you money by reducing wear on machining equipment. This can be a real concern in a busy shop, as more wear means more repairs and more replacements. A worn tool can even impact the quality of a project, which in turn could impact the satisfaction of your customers.

CNC Tool Holders

As illustrated above, a reliable CNC tool holder is an essential component of your machining shop. Stability is key in this regard. If the cutting tool is not stable within the holder, vibration and movement are likely to occur. Even the slightest movement can impact the precision of the cut, which in turn can hamper an entire project.

Improved accuracy of cuts has another added benefit. It also reduces the amount of scrap material generated during the machining process. While this might not seem like much of an issue, consider the financial impact excess scrap will have on your company over time. In this case, a more efficient tool holder can also be considered a cost-saving measure.

There are many different types of tool holders available for CNC machining. The following are a few options and how they work so you can make the best possible decision for your machining needs:

Collet Chucks

For a firm grip and accurate alignment capability, collet chucks have much to offer. This chuck design includes a slotted collar, which makes for a secure hold on the tool. Collet chucks with a smaller diameter are also great for machining in close quarters, which can be a challenge with a more cumbersome tool holder.

Tap Holders

Tap holders come in a few different designs to ensure your machining needs are met. Rigid holders are available in extended lengths, which makes them ideal for horizontal machining centers, and quick-change collet systems are often available for these holders. There are also floating tap holders, which reduce excess axial forces on the tap, thereby increasing its lifespan. Tap holders are also quite compatible with adapters, which means more tools can be fitted to the holder.

End Mill Holders

These holders are well-known for their variety, which makes them essential to any machine shop. They’re also easier on tools, which means less wear and replacement overall. The set screw design ensures a tight hold, which means well-defined machining.

Shrink Fit Holders

Shrink fit holders offer superior gripping by way of a heating and cooling machine. This method allows the holder to firmly grip the accompanying tool, which makes for a more efficient and effective process overall.

Contact Us Today for More Information

For more than five decades, T.M. Smith has held a reputation for creating quality tool holding systems you can depend on. Our quick-change custom tool holder systems have improved efficiency in many different workplaces and industries, including automotive, healthcare, agricultural, machining, aerospace, marine, and many others. They reduce the need for replacement tools and ensure your team can produce precise, quality work.

Along with our existing tool holder selection, we also perform custom work. If you need a tool holder that falls outside our current availability, we’ll review your specs and design a device that meets and exceeds your expectations. And because of the ISO 9001 registered quality system, you can rest assured of a quality project, no matter how complex your needs are.

Visit us online for a complete listing of our products. You can also contact us toll-free at (800) 521-4894, or call our Mt Clemens, MI facility at (586) 468-1465. We look forward to speaking with you and helping you meet your tooling needs!

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