In terms of worldwide turnover, this segment is by far the largest. Cemented carbides in this field exhibit WC grain sizes from 0.5μm to 5μm and cobalt in the range of 3 to 12 wt %. “Straight grades”, which exhibit WC and Co only (despite minor additions of other elements) are used for the machining of cast irons, hardened steel, stainless steels, nonferrous metals, nickel-based highstrength alloys, wood, plastics or composites. WC-(W,Ti,Ta,Nb)(C,N)-Co grades (so-called steel cutting grades) are used in machining of steel, especially for long chipping alloys.
Cemented carbide indexable inserts with complex geometries are applied in all kinds of machining operations, such as turning, milling, grooving, threading, drilling, etc. Individual tools are equipped with up to 300 inserts.