Places you never knew abrasive mounted points were used

Mounted Points are one of the most versatile abrasives we have in the portfolio and for that reason, they are also some of the most widespread and commonly used products available.

Despite this, many outside of the abrasives industry don't know what they are, let alone where they might be used in the real world.

In this article we review some of the more obscure places that you might not necessarily think would involve the use of mounted points.

In many industries, grinding requirements can be very specific.

For instance, the workpiece metal might not lend itself to efficient grinding, or there could be a difficulty with the size of the workpiece; small, intricate, or curved shapes are notoriously difficult to grind and finish.

Where a lot of abrasives fall down, mounted points often excel.

Mounted Points are used in many places that you might not even consider, here are just a few of them:

1. Jet Engine Turbine Blades - Aerospace

The seatbelt signs have been switched on, the tray tables are put away and the arm rests are in the upright position.
It’s finally time to jet off for that client meeting or conference somewhere in Europe.

If you’re only going a short distance, you might see propellers whirring away as you take a brief glimpse outside the window, or hear the dull roar of jet engines warming up if your meeting is a little further afield.

Whichever it is, those components were likely finished and repaired on a regular basis using a particular family of abrasives known as mounted points.

turbine blades aeroplane

The unique, highly intricate and often angular shaped metal used for aeroplane jet engine blades for example are an absolutely ideal application for mounted points due to the array of shapes and sizes available.

In addition, as they have to withstand the most intense heat and pressure within the jet engine, these turbine blades are generally made from an incredibly durable alloy composite containing nickel, titanium, and aluminium.

This type of hard material typically presents a significant challenge to grind but Norton Quantum ceramic mounted points, with their revolutionary ceramic grain are ideally suited for this kind of material.

The applications don’t stop with the propulsion of the plane however, there are also a plethora of nozzles, pipes and guide vanes using mounted points as part of the manufacturing, finishing and repair process.

2. Dental and Medical Instruments

Lie back, relax, open wide, and try in vain to make idle small talk while a stranger explores the inner crevices of your mouth.

Depending on the manufacturer, the instruments your dentist uses to poke, prod, and pick at your teeth might well have been ground and finished with a mounted point at some stage in its manufacture.

The same is true for medical equipment and surgical instruments.

In fact, for some suppliers mounted points contribute a significant slice of the hand finishing element of their medical tool manufacture.

dental and medical instruments

Everything from an orthopaedic hammer all the way up to highly complex workpiece such as metal hip replacements, the precision, accuracy and versatility that mounted points can offer for these kinds of applications, makes them perfect for the dental and medical markets.

So the next time you go for a check-up, just remember the important role that abrasive mounted points are playing in keeping you healthy.

3. Oil Drilling

After pulling into the petrol station to fill the car up and despairing at the rate at which the “this sale” number increases, you might briefly wonder about the journey the fuel itself has taken from 6000 feet under the sea bed to the local station.

The drill heads used in the extraction of oil and natural gas undergo ID (Interior Diameter) grinding in order to finish them and maximise their service life.

The structure of the drill of head is a complex arrangement of tooth and cone shapes designed with the primary purpose of material removal on the ocean floor.

These intricate and detailed features of the drill can only be finished by abrasives that are uniquely shaped to reach these hard-to-reach areas.

This kind of work is achievable with mounted points.

drilling for oil

Although not as complex in shape, mounted points are also used for OD and ID grinding in oil upset pipes.

During the upsetting or forging process, soft metal is forced outwards and inwards (Internal-External Upset) around the point of adhesion, leaving excess metal when it cools. Before the pipes can be used to extract oil, the excess material needs to be ground down.

Obviously there is a long crude oil distillation process that comes next but when you are in the kiosk paying for the overly expensive fuel now in your tank, at least you will no longer wonder about the role that mounted points have played in getting fossil fuel from the sea bed to your car.

4. Tool Casts and Moulds

It’s a warm dry day, the car is jacked up, the sump nut is unscrewed and you have a bowl full of old oil now awaiting disposal.
Shiny steel sockets and spanners are nestled carefully in an old toolbox dragged up from the shed at the bottom of the garden.

At a time such as this, you probably wouldn’t give too much thought to the fact that the casts and moulds from whence those tools originally came and even some of the tools themselves, were likely maintained and finished (respectively) by abrasive mounted points.

wall of various tools

As hundreds if not thousands of tools are plucked from their moulds on a daily basis in some factories, the casts themselves are prone to damage and misshaping.

Left unchecked, these imperfections are transferred directly to each tool; potentially compromising the structural integrity of the finished tool.

As these moulds are often intricately shaped, a precision abrasive such as a mounted point would usually be chosen to repair them.

Norton Quantum Mounted Points

A quantum leap ahead in mounted points technology: Norton Mounted Points.

Manufactured with Quantum ceramic grain for the ultimate free cutting action, in combination with our revolutionary bond technology Vitrium 3 that minimises heat build-up, reduces burn and improves part quality.

Never before has there been such a comprehensive range of +200 stock items - 80 shapes available, grit (from 36 to 120) and multiple shaft dimensions (3, 6 and 8mm); there’s a solution available for any application. All made to stock.