CBN Grinding Wheels and the proper processes for grinding with CBN

Initially, the type of material being ground dictates the type of wheel being used in the grinding process. The efficiency of your grinding process is heavily dependent on the type of grinding wheel used, whether diamond or cBN. Diamond and CBN wheels are an essential part of achieving the maximum efficiency possible. You could use Aluminum Oxide wheels (AO), but, depending on the material being ground and the process, you probably will not grind as economically or efficiently. If you are grinding steel or hardened steel with an Rc of 42 or higher, you should, at a minimum, consider using cBN wheels.


Having the right CBN Grinding Wheel in your shop can help you grow your business’s productivity as well as boost profits.

CBN is a man-made material that was built to rival the strength of diamond. CBN falls just short of the hardness of diamond, but makes up in other areas that play a crucial role in the grinding industry. The chemical makeup of cBN allows these wheels to grind ferrous materials. Grinding Ferrous materials is a problem for a diamond wheel due to the heat buildup during the grinding process.

What are ferrous metals?

Ferrous metals are metals such as steel, stainless steel, carbon steel and cast iron. These metals are made by combining different ratios of iron and carbon along with other materials. Ferrous metals typically have a high carbon content.

Why diamond isn’t able to grind ferrous metals

Diamond is unable to grind ferrous materials due to the carbon atoms in its crystal structure. The carbon breaks down due to the high temperatures created during the grinding process. CBN however, replaces those carbon atoms with boron, thus allowing the cBN particles to operate at higher temperatures than the diamond particles.

The importance of the CBN Bonding Layer

A grinding wheel is a combination of  CBN particles wrapped with a coating and then embedded in a bonding material (or bond). The bond of a cBN wheel is one of the most important factors when choosing the correct wheel for the job. If the bond is too hard or too soft it will adversely effect the grinding process. The bond has to wear at the correct rate and hold the abrasive particle in place, in some cases the bond is also used to transfer heat away from the grinding area. When a wheel wears down, typically the cBN particle erodes or fractures, eventually to a point that the particle is not effective and the coating cannot hold the cBN particle in place. It is pulled out by the material being ground, the bond is soft, and immediately exposes the next particle. This constant exposure of new grains of cBN is what keeps a wheel grinding effectively.

Who is Eagle Superabrasives Inc?

Eagle Superabrasives Inc. is headquartered in Hickory, North Carolina, and is an American manufacturer and supplier of superabrasives. We boast of an extensive inventory of over 6,000 CBN, CDX, and Diamond Wheels in stock. Wheels that are in stock are shipped the same day. Custom orders can be developed and shipped in as little as seven days!

When you’re ready to try the best, trust the experts at Eagle Superabrasives Inc. Our staff is ready to answer any questions that you may have when it comes to choosing a grinding wheel and we understand which wheel will meet your needs the best. Contact us today to speak about aggressive CBN grinding wheels!