Carbide Burrs

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Carbide burrs, also known as rotary files or die grinder bits, are among the most effective tools for a wide range of metal fabrication tasks. These include shaping, cutting, grinding, and removal of sharp edges. Apart from that, this tool is also functional in removing excess materials, also known as deburring.

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Have you ever heard of carbide burrs? Do you want to know which to go for between rotary burs or tungsten carbide? Are you curious to know the best between Tungsten Carbide burrs and HSS? Here in this article, we'll be taking a brief look at the difference between Tungsten Carbide burrs and the HSS. Besides, we'll also be revealing how to choose the best one to opt for between the two metal fabrication tools. Let's get started;

What Exactly Are Rotary or Carbide Burrs?

Simply put, a rotary burr refers to a tool or material that is specifically manufactured and designed to carry out the removal of materials in metal fabrication. While these tools are designed to rotate at a relatively high speed, they can also manipulate the materials they are working on.

When working with metals or metallic materials, carbide burrs are excellent tools that'll make the shaping, deburring, and enlargement of holes more seamlessly. Tungsten Carbide rotary burs are useful on all varieties of metals such as stainless steel, steel, and aluminum. Similarly, they are commonly used by engineers, engravers, contractors, and metal fabricators for making tools, jewelry, grinding, and welding. Other areas where tungsten carbide burrs are used include deburring, model engineering, and sculpting.

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What is HSS?

Often shortened as HSS, high-speed steel is another high carbon metal fabrication tool that contains an increased composition of tungsten. Typically, an HSS contains about 4% of chromium, 18% of tungsten, 1% of vanadium, 0.7% of carbon, and the remaining one is iron. Despite the heat and friction generated when this tool is being put into use, HSS burrs still maintain an increased temper.

HSS can be very high in terms of its hardness resulting from heat. Combined with the resistant carbides, the HSS is a metal fabrication tool that fosters excellent edge retention and abrasive resistance.

Tungsten Carbide Burrs Versus HSS

Generally, a metal burr is manufactured from either high strength steel (HSS) or Tungsten Carbide. When working with metals only, tungsten carbide burrs are mostly preferable. This is due to their durability in handling several demanding jobs without wear or tear. The HSS burrs, on the other hand, have a reduced tolerance for heat. As a result, high temperature and pressure tend to soften the HSS tool. Compared to HSS, tungsten carbide burrs can last longer.

The Difference Between Tungsten Carbide Burrs and HSS.

Before we dive into the difference between Tungsten and HSS, you need to know some of the factors that are being used to distinguish between the two. These factors include the types of cut, the size, and the techniques.

Now, we'll take a brief look at each of these factors;


If you want to get the most accurate result and make your burr last longer, ensure that you do not apply unnecessary pressure while cutting. Excessive pressure during the cutting of your metal materials will allow the cutting edges of the flutes. This will make help cut short the life of your burr.

Apart from this, ensure that you move around the area where the cutting is being done. If you leave the metal for a long time, it can lead to clogging. This will ultimately result in blocking it from digging and jabbing into the project you're working on. Eventually, you'll have a rough job with obvious marks.


The speed of the rotary burr depends largely on the metal and size of the burr used. If you want to arrive at an optimum performance level, you're advised to check the correct RPM recommendations by the manufacturer. Ideally, you can start from a lower speed to a higher speed level. However, if you discover that your burr is chipping, it's a sign that you should slow down a bit.



When it comes to tungsten carbide burrs, there's a wide range of sizes to align with different areas or applications. The project you're about to work on determines the specific size of burr you'll choose. In most cases, small burrs go with small projects, and larger burrs go with larger projects.


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Tungsten Carbide Burrs and HSS; How to Select the Burr that Suit Your Needs.

Overall, the best metal fabricator for your job depends on two factors. The first is your personal preferences, while the second depends on how much you'll utilize the burrs. Do you prefer durability? Or you want a bur that offers less maintenance? When choosing a burr, you should examine your personal preferences and the frequency of duration you'll use the burr. This will help you arrive at a clean and smart job.


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