More pressure for cooler gun drills

Shops running gun drills with liquid cooling systems can increase feedrates and reduce tool breakage by adding a newly developed fluid-to-fluid booster that raises coolant pressure. The booster, manufactured by Interface Devices Inc., Milford, Conn., increases the pressure of the primary system coolant by a factor of three. Maximum input pressure is 1,000 psi. High-pressure coolant is then fed through a special rotary union that delivers cooling fluid to the center of the tool.

This lets users increase feedrates without the reciprocation or "pecking" required in traditional machining operations. The booster costs about $3,000 but when combined with an existing cooling system, does the job of a $15,000 high-pressure fluid-based system. Although the booster is currently used primarily for gun drilling, the company intends to expand its use to other machine tools.