Duval Precision Grinding was recently contacted by a machined component manufacturer who needed help with tight-tolerance surface grinding in a hard-to-reach area. The parts were split ring seals, components to an experimental test instrument that were critical to hold the seal on a closely controlled testing chamber. The seal was essential not only to the testing environment but also for product quality assurance, as its secondary function was to prevent contaminants from entering the instrument.

The customer had performed machining and finishing operations internally up to this point but soon found themselves facing a puzzling challenge when it came to accessing the internal cavity of the ring seal.  They contacted Duval Precision Grinding and provided samples of the components and a 3D drawing that showed the internal cavity and the area they were struggling to reach.

Processing Machined Components for Laboratory Instrumentation

The material for the split ring seals was a 400 series stainless steel; two c-shaped components that could be joined to construct a  circle. During intake inspection, we discovered that the part did not meet the required degree of flatness. For our process to yield reliable, repeatable, and precise results, the parts must meet a certain threshold of geometric accuracy.

This particular part is shipped in two pieces, which are then clamped together for final grinding and polishing. They needed it to be flat within +/-.0001; under inspection, the locating face of the part was revealed to have a saddle-shaped deformation 14 times less flat than stated in the engineering documentation. If finish grinding had proceeded as planned with the distorted locating face affecting measurements, the part could end up warped, deformed, and likely unusable.

Alignment and Precision Grinding of Split Ring Seals

To correct this issue, Duval worked with the customer to identify potential problems in their manufacturing process, advising them on ways to improve alignment prior to beginning any type of work. The customer’s initial request was for surface grinding, but a conversation between the customer’s engineers and those at Duval determined that face grinding on an ID grinder was a better solution.

The parts were returned to the customer, which delayed the overall timeline but resulted in a better product. Catching and correcting this issue at intake helped the customer save money, avoid further delays later in the production cycle, and prevent the potential waste of scrapped parts. Once the re-machined parts were returned to Duval they were successfully processed, achieving smooth surfaces that fulfilled the challenging specifications required by the client.

Precision Grinding Is All About Attention To Detail

Duval Precision Grinding is a leading precision grinding service provider for customers worldwide that require exacting tolerances: aerospace, medical, oil & gas, food packaging, automotive, and other high-tech industries. Every job order is meticulously analyzed by our engineers, who choose the best processing approach for each unique component.

With a highly-skilled workforce and decades of experience, DPG is the right choice for your precision grinding needs. Contact Duval Precision Grinding today.

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