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Polycrystalline products

Polycrystalline superabrasives, i.e. polycrystalline diamond and CBN products, constitute a more recent family of superabrasives, which have been designed for machining respectively nonferrous and ferrous materials.

I. Polycrystalline diamond (PCD) is used for machining a wide variety of nonferrous and nonmetallic materials, a revolutionary product for toolmakers manufacturing finished cutting tools.

Polycrystalline tool blanks consist of high quality diamond micron powders, sintered and bonded to a cemented tungsten carbide substrate through a high temperature - high pressure process.

They exist in a full range of sizes, shapes and grades in order to achieve optimum productivity in every industrial application. For instance, it has been observed that impact resistance increase with diamond grain size. See table.

Diamond Particle Size


  • super finishing operations (where surface finish is critical)
  • eg.: woodworking


  • finishing operations
  • good impact resistance
  • general purposes


  • roughing operations
  • extreme impact resistance
  • eg.: interrupted turning and milling applications, cast aluminium alloys

PCD blanks combine the hardness and abrasion resistance of single crystal diamond with the impact strength of tungsten carbide, which provides a very good support to the diamond abrasive layer. They offer higher material removal rates, faster cutting speeds, improved quality and longer tool life. Since ferrous materials tend to form carbides at high temperature, PCD blanks are only suited for nonferrous materials such as tungsten carbide, ceramics, manufactured wood, plastics and composites.


II. Polycrystalline CBN products (PCBN) have thus been designed for machining ferrous materials (since cubic boron nitride does not chemically react with carbide-forming elements) They are therefore perfectly suited for materials such as hardened steel, nickel alloys and superalloys.


They also consist of fine particles (i.e. micron sized crystals) of CBN, bonded to a cemented tungsten carbide substrate, providing increased hardness and wear resistance, as well as a good support to the CBN abrasive layer. PCBN products not only offer high thermal resistance but they also enjoy the same exceptional properties as PCD blanks, i.e. high wear and impact resistance, greater material removal rate, etc…







PCD and PCBN products have brought about considerable productivity improvements and significant cost savings, while enhancing the quality of the finished tools.


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