CNC Machining Materials

Titanium

At a glance

Processes

CNC Mill
CNC Lathe

Lead Time

As fast as 7 days

Finishing options

Media Blasting, Tumbling, Passivation

Tolerance

With drawing: as low as +/- 0.005 mm
No drawing: ISO 2768 medium

Price

$$$

Applications

Aerospace fasteners, engine components, aircraft components, marine applications

Grade

Titanium Grade 5

About the material

Titanium Grade 5 is the strongest titanium alloy with good corrosion resistance and the ability to be welded. Titanium may be selected over other materials such as steel due to its ability to withstand high  and subzero temperatures. Common use cases include aerospace fasteners, turbine blades, engine components, sports equipment and marine applications.

Material Properties

Yield Strength

120,000 PSI

Elongation at Break

10%

Hardness

Rockwell C30

Density

0.16 lbs / cu. in

Max Temp

3000°F

McMaster Part Number

9039k24

Material Finish

Titanium is very similar to most grades of stainless steel in terms of overall appearance. Titanium can be media blasted or tumbled to achieve a multitude of surface finishes. Additionally, a light, protective, coating may be applied using passivation.

Design Recommendations

Min Wall Thickness

0.5 mm

Min End Mill Size

0.8 mm (0.03 in)

Min Drill Size

0.5 mm (0.02 in)

Max Part Size

1200 x 500 x 152 mm [x,y,z] (mill)
152 x 394 mm [d,h] (lathe)

Undercuts

Square profile, full radius, dovetail profiles

Radii : Depth

Depth must not exceed 12x drill bit diameter. For end mills, depth must not exceed 10x tool diameter.

CNC Machining Titanium FAQs

What is the cutting speed of titanium?

When CNC machining titanium, low cutting speeds are recommended. Tool tip temperatures can be easily increased by higher cutting speeds, which can compromise tools. Other related factors include sharp tools regularly replaced at the first sign of wear, feed rates high enough to prevent work hardening and the generous use of coolant.

Can you machine titanium with HSS tools?

High speed steel (HSS) drills are excellent for Titanium so long as it is sharp, but carbide tipped drills still provide the best results and deep hole drilling. Because titanium is not a great conductor of heat, much of the heat goes into cutting tools, highlighting the need for sharp and well-maintained tools.

Why is CNC machining titanium difficult?

Some of the factors that can make CNC machining titanium difficult are:

  1. Poor Thermal Conductivity - cutting tools end up taking the burden of heat generation.
  2. “Sticky” or “Gummy” Properties - can lead to problems with long “stringy” chips as well as creating built-up edge.
  3. Low Modulus of Elasticity - leads to spring back and chatter while machining.
  4. High Work Hardening Tendency - further increases difficulty of machining.

What is the best grade of titanium?

Grade 4 titanium is generally considered the strongest pure titanium, although the least moldable. It also has excellent corrosion resistance and outstanding ductility. Titanium is also lighter weight than some steels, such as stainless, due to its low density.

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