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News > Maximising Returns: Calculating the ROI of High-Performance Carbide Tools

Maximising Returns: Calculating the ROI of High-Performance Carbide Tools

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For engineering companies and production or manufacturing engineers, having the right tools impacts a wide range of areas including tool performance, tool life, production efficiency, and production quality. These factors all, in turn, impact the ROI on investment in such tools and this ROI can help engineering companies make the best decision for what tools they need.

High-performance carbide tools are one option for many engineers looking to improve their processes, but many producers wonder how the ROI of carbide tools compares to the ROI of other prominent alternatives like HSS tools. By understanding the different performance areas of high-performance carbide tools, companies can decide if these tools are worth the investment and what their ROI could be.

Calculating the ROI of high-performance Carbide Tools Investment

What your return on investment will depend on the specifics of your company and operations. Calculating the ROI on tools is a relatively straightforward process that only requires you to consider some key areas of how those tools will be leveraged by your company. You want to take the costs associated with a tool and then compare that to how much the tool will earn you.

Some important areas to consider include:

  • Tool, operating, and maintenance costs
  • Number of labour hours related to tool use
  • Equipment use time and cycle time
  • Scrap rate percentage and resource wastage
  • Rates of production
  • How long the tool lifespan will be
  • Any downtown that may be required for repair or maintenance

These factors will help you determine the potential rate on investment a tool can offer, but you may also have special considerations you will also have to think about. The goal is to keep costs down as much as possible while also getting as much profit as possible. In many cases, a larger investment will be needed to get an overall higher bottom line and promote growth goals, but before making a big investment, you want to weigh the different impacts carbide tools may have in key areas of business.

The following sections will dive deeper into some of the key areas of concern and show different scenarios in which carbide tools offer advantages to machining companies.

Going Bespoke

Higher-quality bespoke tools may seem like a giant investment, and many engineering companies are tempted to go with lower-cost alternatives. Unfortunately, those lower-cost alternatives often have big promises but not enough reward. They end up not being the right fit for the needs of a business and are more hassle than help.

Bespoke tools may seem more costly, but they are designed for the purpose they are performing, so they quickly pay their cost many times over. Bespoke carbide tools not only offer a custom solution, but they also are known for their longevity, low lifetime operational costs, and use in speciality markets that require specific tools. Therefore, going bespoke is one way machining companies can enhance their performance without requiring arduous changes. Check out our Infinite Possibilities.

Better Finishes

One of the best parts of a carbide tool is that these tools are known for providing cleaner finishes. Carbide resists fast wear-down, so cuts remain sharp for longer. Materials like steel quickly break down and become duller, requiring more maintenance. Carbide also tends to have a neater finish the first time, meaning that you spend less time and resources having to smooth out imperfections. These tools work smoothly with both metal and wood.

While HSS tools can be used to accomplish the same tasks, carbide performance tests show that carbide offers increased precision because carbide is the harder material.

Extending Tool Life

When looking to invest in tools, the lifespan is a crucial consideration.  If a tool works better and lasts longer, it’s naturally going to be a better investment. One major disadvantage of HSS tools, despite them being inexpensive, is that these tools degrade rapidly.

Carbide tools are known for their enduring lifespan because the material is highly durable while still being relatively affordable. Not only does carbide tend to endure more use, so by paying a more upfront, you can reduce your tool costs in the long-run. Carbide tools stay in top shape for longer, but they can also are more maintainable, so you can retain the same tools with only minimal maintenance. HSS tools can be sharpened, but they will lose stability sooner than carbide tools.

Enhanced Efficiency

If you’re looking for a cost-effective tool, carbide tools stand out because carbide dissipates heat incredibly well compared to materials like steel. Thus, carbide can be used without having to wait for the machinery to cool down, and the material remains stronger as you use it. Plus, with the long tool life, it’s clear to see that when looking at efficiency, carbide is king.

Shorter Production Cycles

Carbide tools have fast cutting speeds, and these cutting speeds mean that the length of production cycles times can be reduced without compromising the quality of production. Shorter production cycles mean that you can get more done within the same amount of time, and leaves room for growth opportunities and increased reliability.

The Right Tool for Each Job

The ROI also depends on using the right tool for each job. By using the proper tool, engineering companies can increase their productivity, and this increased productivity also improves the ROI. Tools are a huge operational cost for many companies, and usually, the investment into carbide tools is cost-effective when considering factors like the lifespan, quality, and productivity of tools. Using the wrong tools leads to tools wearing faster and producing less during their lifespan.

HSS tools do have much overlap with carbide tools, but HSS tools may struggle with certain tasks, such as dealing with alloys that have higher hardness. Meanwhile, carbide tools are going to offer wider uses and are great for companies that make speciality products that require extra precision and operational integrity.

A clear example of using the right tool for the right job is the difference between ball nose and barrel tools. Each tool has a valuable role in the machining industry. Barrel tools are known for being useful in broad surface milling. By using a barrel tool, stepover distances can be improved by 70% vs ball nose tools. Not only is machining time cut down by 40-60%, but the tool goes through less wear and tear, leading to a 50% longer life.

With these figures in mind, the maths become clear: the better tools are the ones that can optimize as many areas of measurement as possible while reducing operational hurdles that can become costly fast. Carbide tooling is advantageous because it can be designed for particular applications to optimise performance for specific uses. It can be made in a range of sizes, neck relief, coating, reach, diameter, or radius. This customisation means that you can always use the right tool for the job.

A Wide Range of Services

Beyond just the surface-level services, customers want total engineering solutions that include compatible services like tool vending, remanufacture, and CAM strategies. Each service is completed with state-of-the-art technology to enhance productivity and long-term costs.

Quickgrind uses a different standard in its remanufacturing, creating an “as-new” standard that strives. CAM specific tooling saves money, but it also increases machining and team productivity. As a result, other costs like wage bill or machine maintenance are also lowered. Investing in bespoke tools leads to a domino effect of positive cost differences that any company will quickly observe.

When working with a company like Quickgrind, you know that you are not just getting tools, you are getting a partner, who wants to mutually benefit. Together, we can push forward and improve the standard of the industry.

Working Hard Across Industries

Carbide tools have proven themselves effective across industries. F1 motorsports, medical, and oil and gas are examples of distinctive industries that have each benefitted from carbide tools. Because carbide tools are so customizable, they can help engineers reach optimization no matter how the tools need to be used.

Common product areas include:

From design to creation, carbide tools at Quickgrind are created with each use in mind, allowing more precise and efficient work based on each individual industry’s standards.

Endless Potential with Better Investment

The bottom line is that whether carbide tools are worth the investment will depend on the needs of any given company because not every company will require the same cutting abilities. However, carbide has proven that it offers versatile and customizable applications, showing its potential for products that require efficiency, durable tools, and smooth finishes.

Most companies can get by with any tooling that does the job, but for most companies, just getting by is never the goal. The goal is to help companies reach heights beyond what they even imagined. Quickgrind carbide tooling has been used in more than 37 countries and has been used to help all kinds of engineers, including aerospace, automotive, and general engineering. By creating better production outcomes, these carbide tools increase the ROI by increasing the value of tools and reducing associated costs.

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