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Wire Erosion & Spark Erosion (EDM)

At Bentham & Holroyd we have CNC wire erosion and spark erosion machining facilities for subcontract work or as part of our full in-house design and manufacturing services.

Electrical Discharge Machining (EDM)

EDM also referred to as spark machining, spark eroding, burning, die sinking, wire burning or wire erosion, is a machining process whereby the desired shape is obtained using electrical discharges (sparks) to remove material from an item.

Using a series of rapidly recurring electrical discharges between an electrode tool and the desired item separated by a dielectric liquid, the part is slowly eroded to produce the desired complex shape without direct physical contact with the tool.

Why use EDM?

Electrical discharge machining is a method primarily used for hard metals or those that would be very difficult to machine with traditional techniques. EDM can cut intricate contours or cavities in pre-hardened steel without the need for heat treatment to soften and re-harden them. This method can be used with any other metal or metal alloy such as Titanium, Hastelloy, Kovar, and Inconel.

Put simply, electrical discharge machining is a clean, efficient method of cutting, resizing and manipulating metal. The process is an entirely non-contact method of machining. As such we are able to create tools and other utensils in extremely fine detail.

Advantages of EDM include:

  • Producing complex shapes and structures that would otherwise be difficult to produce with conventional cutting tools.
  • Machining extremely hard material to very close tolerances.
  • Very small work pieces where conventional cutting tools may damage the part from excess cutting tool pressure.
  • There is no direct contact between tool and work piece. Therefore, delicate sections and weak materials can be machined without perceivable distortion.
  • A good surface finish can be obtained; a very good surface may be obtained by redundant finishing paths.
  • Very fine holes can be attained.
  • Tapered holes may also be produced.


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