Next generation SilverLine solid carbide milling cutters put on the test

The Challenge: Can the solid carbide milling cutters from the next generation SilverLine beat the end mills from the former product line?

Our solid carbid milling cutters from the next generation SilverLine were completely overhauled. But are these new tools really better than the old ones? With our client Heinz Knöpfle we put the new milling cutters on the test.

The client: Heinz Knöpfle GmbH, CNC machinist and supplier for leading companies in medical engineering, mechanical engineering and areospace

Heinz Knöpfle GmbH, situated in Schwabmünchen near Augsburg, was founded over 30 years ago. Knöpfle's customers include leading companies from challenging industries such as medical and weighing technology, mechanical engineering, aviation and many more.

Christian Knöpfle happily agreed, when we asked him to do the test with us, but points out that "as a big fan of the SilverLine tools, we have very high expectations."

What sets Heinz Knöpfle GmbH apart is its wide range of services, including the turning, milling and complete machining of simple and complex parts from 10 to 800 mm in diameter and up to 2,000 mm in length.

On the picture: Christian Knöpfle (right) with our Regional Sales Director Aris Maul.


The task: machining a polygon shaft from stainless steel

The SilverLine was initially used in the challenging machining of a polygon shaft made from stainless steel, which Knöpfle produces in various sizes for a water management company. The tool used back then did not deliver the desired performance, and in benchmark tests, CERATIZIT impressed in every respect with the WNT SilverLine milling cutter. "These milling cutters left the competition in the dust when it came to performance data, service life, etc.," recalls Christian Knöpfle. "However, the SilverLine not only impressed on VA materials, but it is also suitable for any application – even simpler steels. We use the tool at extremely high cutting speeds and therefore achieve excellent chip evacuation, with a service life and level of process security that other milling cutters never reach. This is ideal for users like us, who are well-positioned on the market but only wish to use a small selection of tools despite this. The SilverLine has since been our clear favourite."

New SilverLine and stainless steel part

Polygon shafts made from stainless steel with SilverLine

What`s exactly new about the next generation SilverLine?

For the new SilverLine tools we use a new carbide material. Also the grinding images were optimised and geometries modified in the micro range. With regard to the coating, the new SilverLine now features the ‘Dragonskin’, a PVD coating that ensures an extremely long service life.

Back to the challenge: SilverLine next generation vs. "old" SilverLine

Heinz Knöpfle GmbH is the perfect field test partner for us, as few customers use the SilverLine in such a versatile manner as the Schwabmünchen-based CNC machining experts.  Knöpfle used the new generation of tools for six months on almost all 18 CNC machines.

The new SilverLine generation is full of surprises

The amazing results that we have achieved with the upgrade have far exceeded our expectations
Christian Knöpfle, Heinz Knöpfle GmbH

The SilverLine milling cutters impressed in every respect when used for the challenging machining of a polygon shaft made from stainless steel, which Knöpfle produces in large quantities and in many variants

The range of universal WNT SilverLine solid carbide milling cutters is the most significant standalone product in the Ceratizit catalogue for solid carbide milling cutters

The result: Up to 40 percent higher cutting speed and service life

The tangible difference: Twenty to forty percent higher cutting speeds depending on the material, whether stainless steel or steel, flame-cut, uncoated or scaled. At the same time, the service life increased by thirty to forty percent. "We noticed straight away that the new SilverLine tools are quieter, thus reducing the burden on the machine. The values obtained over the months then fully confirmed this. We have a new favourite tool," smiles the machining expert.

Key facts
  • Test: New generation SilverLine solid carbide milling cutters
  • Client: CNC-Machinist and Supplier Heinz Knöpfle GmbH
  • Challenge: Machining a polygon shaft made from stainless steel - SilverLine old vs. SilverLine next generation 
  • Result: up to 40% higher cutting feed, up to 40% longer service life