Deburring/Finishing Cylinder Hone Improves Quality, Cuts Costs for Compressor Manufacturer

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The Flex-Hone Tool eliminates burrs in manufacturing process that could cause compressor to leak

A new surface deburring and finishing cylinder hone has improved quality and cut costs in the honing of burrs created during the boring of cylinders in the manufacture of hermetic and semi-hermetic compressors. The system, according to a company spokesman, is the most cost effective means of performing the deburring operation.

Copeland Corporation, Sidney, OH, produces accessible and welded motor compressors and condensing units range in capacities from 1/4hp to 100hp. The bodies of the compressors are cast by outside vendors and shipped to Copeland’s plant.

According to Bruce Demers, manufacturing engineer at the company, Copeland maintains very rigid standards in cleaning and deburring the parts. This occurs, he says, because contaminants, such as cast iron dust, chips and burrs, loose in an assembled compressor can cause the unit to fail.

The cylinder hone deburring operation at Copeland is particularly critical since a burr is raised on each compressor’s head deck at the cylinder at the time the cylinder is bored. The compressors range from one cylinder up to nine in tandem units.

To find an efficient solution to its deburring problem, Copeland adopted an innovative deburring/finishing honing tool known as Flex-Hone. Manufactured by Brush Research Manufacturing Co., Inc., Los Angeles, CA, the tool consists of a flexible hone with abrasive laminated to the ends of high-density nylon filaments. At Copeland the cylinder hone is placed in a hand-held air tool and secured by a standard key chuck.

The compressor deburring at Copeland now works as follows: the castings arrive at the plant and are placed on one of three dial index machines, where all the machine dimensions on the body are created. The head deck is milled twice to the company’s micro-requirement of 125rms.

The part is then put into a finish boring machine. It is during this procedure that a burr is formed at the head surface where the bore intersects. Besides being a potential contaminant, the burr is unacceptable for another reason. If the burr remained there, it could allow the head to improperly seat, which would not permit the gasket to seal. In either case the completed compressor could leak.

At this point, after boring, an operator places the casting on one of its machines surfaces so that the cylinder hone is horizontal. He then takes the air tool and Flex-Hones the burr. The flexible hone rotates at about 100 rpm.

The honing tools vary in diameter from 1-inch to 3-inch and are 180 grit silicon carbide. Copeland makes compressors with 15-20 different bore sizes so each Flex-Hone will accommodate a range of sizes, with the cylinder hone being slightly larger than the bore.

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Heather Fowlie
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