The dynamic stability of the milling process is investigated through a single degree-of-freedom model by determining the regions where chatter (unstable) vibrations occur in the two-parameter space of spindle speed and depth of cut. Dynamic systems like milling are modeled by delay-differential equations (DDEs) with time-periodic coefficients. A new approximation technique for studying the stability properties of such systems is presented. The approach is based on the properties of Chebyshev polynomials and a collocation representation of the solution at their extremum points, the Chebyshev collocation points. The stability properties are determined by the eigenvalues of the approximate monodromy matrix which maps function values at the collocation points from one interval to the next. We check the results for convergence by varying the number of Chebyshev collocation points and by simulation of the transient response via the DDE23 MATLAB routine. The milling model used here was derived by Insperger et al. [14]. Here, the specific cutting force profiles, stability charts, and chatter frequency diagrams are produced for up-milling and down-milling cases for one and four cutting teeth and 25 to 100 % immersion levels. The unstable regions due to both secondary Hopf and flip (period-doubling) bifurcations are found which agree with the previous results found by other techniques. An in-depth investigation in the vicinity of the critical immersion ratio for down-milling (where the average cutting force changes sign) and its implication for stability is presented.

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