Comparative cutting performance tests of two ceramic tools in machining cast iron, AISI-4340, H-11 steel were made, and the wear patterns, wear rates, and tool life data are analyzed to evaluate the performance characteristics of ceramic tools in comparison with that of carbide tools. Also the wear process and mechanism of ceramic tools are investigated by scanning electron microscope techniques and electron microprobe analyses. Some specific causes and mechanism of tool wear are evaluated in relation to the cutting performance data.

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