Throwback Thursday: Sometimes Graphite Just Isn't Enough

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EDMing with exotic metals requires a little something extra, like copper graphite electrodes.


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Graphite impregnated with copper brings the best of both elements to the EDM table.


As I was touring a mold shop recently, I noticed among the many blocks of graphite and graphite electrodes that were already machined, that the company also made use of copper for its electrodes. I haven’t seen that very much (mainly because graphite is the material of choice in U.S. shops) and learned that copper, for less complex mold inserts, can be a more economical choice for EDM than graphite.

A few days later, I found this article from Poco Graphite that discusses in more detail the use of copper-impregnated graphite electrodes to EDM more exotic materials and decided to make this our Throwback Thursday feature article this week.

There are many schools of thought on this topic, and if you have used copper electrodes or any form of copper in your EDM operations, I’d be interested in hearing about it.


  • Using Copper and Graphite Electrodes: The Big Picture

    Since graphite and copper provide approximately the same surface finish, one must consider the shop - floor environment - and examine the advantages and disadvantages before choosing a material.

  • Maintaining a Wire EDM Machine

    To achieve the ultimate capability and level of productivity from your wire EDM on a consistent, repeatable and reliable basis, regular maintenance is a required task.

  • How to Achieve Efficiency in Graphite Electrode Milling

    A look at the technological advancements of HSM centers that provide the efficiency and quality required for milling graphite electrodes, particularly small electrodes with intricate features and thin-walled characteristics.