Five-axis ball-end milling has been used extensively in the manufacturing of parts with sculptured surfaces. This paper presents the general cutting dynamics model of ball-end milling process for machine tools with different five-axis configurations. The structural dynamics of both the tool and workpiece are considered for the prediction of chatter stability at each tool location along the tool path. The effects of tool-workpiece engagement (TWE) and tool axis orientation are included in the model. By sweeping the spindle speeds, the chatter-free spindle speeds are selected followed by the prediction of forced vibrations in five-axis milling of thin-walled, flexible parts. The proposed model has been experimentally illustrated to predict the cutting stability and forced vibration on a table-tilting five-axis CNC machine tool.

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