Daniel Herrington will host the Hack Chat on Wednesday, January 18 at noon Pacific.
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With few exceptions, metalworking has largely been about making chips, and finding something hard enough and tough enough to cut those chips has always been the challenge. Whether it's high-speed steel, tungsten carbide, or even little chunks of rocks like garnet or diamond, cutting metal has always used a mechanical interaction between tool and stock, often with spectacular results.
But then, some bright bulb somewhere realized that electricity could be used to remove metal from a workpiece in a controlled fashion. Whether it's using electric sparks to erode metal -- electric discharge machining (EDM) -- or using what amounts to electroplating in reverse -- electrochemical machining (ECM) -- electrical machining methods have made previously impossible operations commonplace.
While the technology behind ExM isn't really that popular in the hobby machine shop yet, a lot of the equipment needed and the methods to make it all work are conceivably DIY-able. But the first step toward that is understanding how it all works, and we're lucky enough to have Daniel Herrington stop by the Hack Chat to help us out with that. Daniel is CEO and founder of Voxel Innovations, a company that's on the cutting edge of electrochemical machining with its pulsed ECM technology. There's a lot to unpack, so make sure you stop by so we can all get up to speed on what's up with using electricity to do the machining.