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Outside diameter (OD) grinding is one of the most frequently used grinding techniques – for example in the automotive industry, where it is used in the grinding of camshafts and crankshafts. During the course of industrial development and in response to the requirements which have emerged as a result, outside diameter grinding has been divided into different variants of the technique which differ depending on the way in which the workpiece is mounted and according to the principle feed direction. 

  • Peripheral-transverse outer diameter (OD) grinding between centers (also known as plunge grinding)
  • Centreless peripheral-transverse outer diameter (OD) grinding
  • Peripheral-longitudinal outer diameter (OD) grinding between centers (also known as throughfeed grinding)
  • Centreless peripheral-longitudinal outer diameter (OD) grinding

In this section we take a look at the process of grinding between centers. Here, the workpiece is clamped firmly between two centers in centering fixtures on its end faces, and in this position the workpiece is driven by the grinding machine. Depending on the principle feed direction of the wheel – right-angled plunge feed or parallel movement along the workpiece – this is referred to as transverse or longitudinal grinding. Both techniques generally operate with an up-cutting motion, as better surfaces are produced thanks to the flatter grain action tracks and this helps to improve the supply of grinding fluid to the contact zone.

Peripheral-transverse outer diameter grinding
If the grinding wheel is at right angles to the workpiece then this technique is generally used to machine bearing seats, shoulders and grooves using straight plunge grinding. Often the cut-in is divided into several process steps which are performed in sequence with ever decreasing chip removal rates. Depending on the particular task and the size of the batch, angle plunge grinding is another variant which may be more productive. The angled position of the grinding wheel offers two advantages, as it firstly reduces the grinding contact length and secondly therefore simplifies the production of shoulders with different diameters. Wheel sets which machine all functional surfaces at once are even faster, but they are less flexible and operate with significantly higher forces. They only make sense for bigger production runs with unchanging specifications; they require high-torque drives and rigid machines.

Peripheral-longitudinal outer diameter grinding 
Longitudinal grinding comes into play for applications requiring cylindrical or conical workpieces which are significantly longer than the width of the grinding wheel. Perfect examples include the machining of press cylinders and rollers for paper production, as well as rollers for use in rolling mills in the steel industry. 
In this technique the grinding wheel moves parallel to the workpiece and is fed in at the reversal point at right angles to the workpiece. The required finished dimension can either be attained in several passes or in just a single pass – the latter being referred to as peel grinding. These methods are comparable to creep-feed grinding and reciprocating grinding. Similarly to these techniques, CBN grinding wheels are particularly well suited for the greater infeed rates which are typical in peel grinding, as they offer the necessary strength at the edge of the wheel. In the automotive industry, peel grinding is used for example in the production of drive shafts.

Peripheral outer diameter grinding solutions
The Winterthur Group can offer great experience and expertise in all variants of cylindrical grinding. As a result, we can offer the perfect grinding solution for virtually any application. Examples:

  • Conventional grinding wheels as well as the innovative Nano Win® range from Winterthur, 
  • Conventional large-format grinding wheels for crankshaft grinding from Rappold,
  • Roll grinding wheels and grinding wheels for crankshafts and camshafts from Slip Naxos,
  • CBN grinding wheels with vitrified bonding for high-speed applications in the automotive industry and CBN wheels with electroplated bonding
  • Dressing systems, single-point dressing systems and blade dressers, as well as shape and profile dressing rolls