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Steel Plate Manufacturing Process Enables Easier, More Accurate Installation of Components

Steel 21’s patented process for manufacturing flat and parallel steel plates, 21 Micro Milling, holds A36/4140 grade steel plates on average 3 times more flat and parallel and 5 times smoother.
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Steel 21's patented process, 21 Micro Milling

Image courtesy of Steel 21

West Michigan supplier of heavy steel plates for stamping dies and plastic injection molds, Steel 21, highlights its patented process for manufacturing flat and parallel steel plates, called “21 Micro Milling.”

According to Steel 21, this process makes it easier for toolmakers to install their components with accuracy. Compared to Blanchard Grinding, 21 Micro Milling holds A36/4140 grade steel plates on average 3 times more flat and parallel and 5 times smoother, all while being fully recyclable, thus eliminating “Blanchard grind sludge,” which is disposed of in landfills. Feedback received from toolmakers indicate that Steel 21’s plates shortens their build times by nearly 15%. According to Steel 21, the company’s process is known to hold a 20-foot (240-inch) plate flat within 0.002 inches. In comparison, it is said an average “Blanchard ground” plate of this size would be out nearly 0.020 inches overall, suggesting the 21 Micro milled plates could hold tolerances 10 times more flat and parallel on these large plates.

In general, states Kimm Slater, president of Steel 21, the company’s 21 Micro Milling process has saved customers on time and cost.

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