Abrasive flow machining (AFM) is a surface finishing process characterized by flowing an abrasive-laden, high-viscosity fluid through a workpiece.

AFM smooths and finishes rough surfaces, and is specifically used to remove burrs, polish surfaces, form radii, and even remove material. The nature of AFM makes it ideal for interior surfaces, slots, holes, cavities, and other areas that may be difficult to reach with other polishing or grinding processes.

As part geometry has continued to become more complex, the need for has also increased in kind. Being one of the only existing technologies capable of improving surface finish for complex, internal, cavities and passages Abrasive Flow Machining (AFM) has found its way into most markets. Including but not limited to: Automotive, Fluid Power & Control, Energy, Medical, and even Aerospace. The same holds true for the Additive Manufacturing (AM) market. As the AM market branches into more and more areas, saving manufacturers scrap, weight, at times even combining multiple parts together into a singular part, or making formerly impossible parts a reality the need for finishing has never been higher. Unfortunately, for manufacturers making the impossible, possible, often means traditional machining or finishing practices are no longer a viable option for these complex parts of the future. It’s in these parts, that AFM is able to really shine.

Abrasive Flow Machining (AFM) utilizes an abrasive media applied at higher pressure to change the surface characteristics of a part. This media is comprised of what we call the “carrier” and the “abrasive.” The carrier is a chemically inactive, non-corrosive, material that when applied under pressure wants to behave more like a solid than a liquid. Once this pressure is applied, the abrasive material is then forced against the surface of your part to grind away unwanted material. The necessary pressure is applied via cylinders within our machines, essentially pumping the media back and forth through your part to achieve the desired results. The rate of material removal is then dependent on: Media Flow Rate, Media Viscosity, Abrasive Particle Size & Concentration, Abrasive Particle Density & Hardness, and ultimately the hardness of your part. This media can be selected from our catalog over 1,000 different options or custom designed if necessary, to match your part’s specific needs.

> Uniformly improving the surface finish of internal, complex geometry.

> Improving high incoming roughness with a fast cycle-time.

> Smoothing out critical fatigue points and removing stress risers that may lead to crack propagation.

> Geometry Optimization: Improving entry and exit orifices and fine-tuning surfaces to optimize flow.

> Removal of undesirable burrs or partially sintered particles attached to the surface.

Thanks to a flexible offering and global foot print, we can assist you via our state-of-the-art centers of excellence in China, Europe, India, Japan, United Kingdom and United States.

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Discover our AFM (Abrasive Flow Machining)  equipment offering and technical specification on Extrude Hone website