Dress for Success

How a better Dressing Process can improve your Grinding Performance

One of the most effective ways to improve the quality and productivity of your grinding process is to methodically assess and fine tune the method for dressing your grinding wheels. When Meister engineers are called out to help solve a customer’s grinding problem, the majority of changes they make involve dressing. We often show our customers how to make their vit bonded CBN or diamond grinding wheel sharper for more aggressive cutting or duller for a smoother surface finish, simply by adjusting the dressing parameters. Manufacturers who take advantage of these tips can:

  • improve productivity by reducing cycle time and making fewer wheel changes
  • save money with better wheel life
  • and improve part quality with better finishes and tighter tolerances.

This article provides an overview of the dressing process and why knowledge of it is essential to achieving optimal performance and productivity in your grinding operations. It also describes the latest emerging dresser technologies and provides a calculation tool to assist in setting up a new grinding operation or troubleshooting an existing one.

Dressing 101: Contrary to popular belief, the dressing of vitrified-bonded superabrasive grinding wheels is not a black art, but a well-known scientific process, much like the grinding process itself. Dressing is also a powerful tool that engineers can use for fine-tuning their grinding process and troubleshooting grinding problems. However, before you can use this tool effectively, you need a basic understanding of the various constituents of wheel dressing.

Dressing is a combination of two processes, truing and sharpening. Truing is the procedure used to ensure that the wheel, once it has been installed on the spindle, is optimally round. it may also refer to the methods used to create shapes on grinding wheel surfaces. Sharpening involves removing bonding material from in-between the abrasive grains to expose them so they are ready to cut. For vitrified-bonded wheels these two processes occur simultaneously.

Dressing Tool Selection: Numerous tools may be used to dress grinding wheels. They include simple handheld abrasive sticks; conventional abrasive rotary wheels used on driven or brake- controlled dressing spindles; single and multipoint stationery diamond tools; and a wide variety of rotary diamond tool configurations (cups, discs, and form rollers). Rotary tools are preferred for dressing superabrasive wheels, in particular vitrified-bonded CBN and diamond wheels. See the table below for recommended dressing tools by grinding wheel type.

see “Emerging Dresser Technology” section for details on Hybrid hDD and cDD products

Dressing Variables: Once the dressing tool has been selected there are six variables that are most frequently adjusted to yield an optimal dressing and grinding process, opening a whole new world of process improvement possibilities:

  1. Wheel and dresser surface speeds: Linear speed at the periphery of the wheel or dresser.
  2. Direction at point of contact: Uni-directional (wheel/dresser turning with each other), or Counter-directional (wheel/dresser turning against each other).
  3. Speed ratio: The ratio of dresser surface speed divided by wheel surface speed.
  4. Infeed amount: The depth of cut taken per pass by the dresser on the grinding wheel.
  5. Traverse speed: The linear speed that the dresser travels across the wheel surface.
  6. Overlap ratio: The number of wheel revolutions for the dresser to traverse a distance equal to its contact width.

Dressing Calculation Tool: Once you have mastered the basics, you are ready to make some calculations. The Meister Dress Calculation Tool is specifically designed to assist the user in setting up the optimal parameters for rotary dressing of vitrified CBN and Diamond grinding wheels.  It can also be used to troubleshoot problems and understand the effects of changing different variables in the dressing process. To download your own copy of the Tool, click this link to open a preview of the file and then the “download” button to save the file to your computer.

Emerging Dresser Technology: As the old saying goes; “Use the right tool for the job.” Developing promising new dresser technologies is one of the most active areas of R&D being pursued at Meister Abrasives, with the introduction of diamond dressers that excel at both truing and sharpening superabrasive wheels simultaneously. Referred to as hDD (Hybrid Diamond Dresser) and cDD (CVD-tipped Diamond Dresser), these tools rely on a unique porous hybrid-bond diamond matrix. This matrix combines the porosity of a vitrified bond with the wear resistance of a metal bond. The cumulative advantages of this technology include:

  • Superior Truing (accurate and consistent profile generation on the grinding wheel)
  • Superior Sharpening (does not dull the grinding wheel)
  • Low dressing forces
  • Grinding wheel cuts better and achieves better part quality
  • Lower dress in-feed or higher skip dress possible
  • Dressing tool stays sharp – No conditioning required

 Learn More: If you would like to improve your dressing process and need help, don’t hesitate to contact Meister and talk with one of our experienced sales engineers.

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*NEW* – Revised Meister Dress Calculation Tool

We’ve recently improved our very popular Dress Calculation Tool with an updated look, improved functionality, and guidance to help you get the best possible performance from your grinding operation.

The Excel-based Dress Calculation Tool is designed for use on a desktop or Office-enabled mobile device

This tool is specifically designed to assist the user in setting up the optimal parameters for rotary dressing of vitrified CBN and Diamond grinding wheels.  It can also be used to troubleshoot problems and understand the effects of changing different variables in the dressing process.

Download your own copy of the new Dress Calculation Tool today by clinking this link to open a preview of the file and then the “download” button to save the file to your computer.

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CASE STUDY: Total Cost Calculation Tool

Vitrified CBN justified to replace Aluminum Oxide

25% total cost/part savings plus other benefits

This case study illustrates how Meister’s Total Cost Calculation Tool was used to justify the conversion of an aluminum oxide grinding process over to vitrified CBN.  The application was an OD/face grind on a pump rotor shaft for truck engines.

Although the CBN wheel carried a >40% increase in abrasive cost/part, the savings in cycle time, productivity, and downtime for wheel changes far outweighed the additional abrasive costs to provide a total cost/part savings of over 25% and also provided a significant potential increase in capacity, not to mention improved part consistency and tightened control over surface finish, roundness and flatness.  below are the details of the application and results.  To download your own copy of the Total Cost Calculation Tool, please follow THIS LINK.

To view the entire worksheet:

click to enlarge

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Introducing Salman Kassir

Sales/Applications Engineer
for the Semiconductor/Photovoltaic Industry

Meister Abrasives is pleased to announce the appointment of Salman Kassir as Sales/Applications Engineer to support our customers in the Semiconductor and Photovoltaic industries in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Salman has over 20 years of experience in the industry, having worked for such companies as Strasbaugh, Rubicon, and Dow Corning.

Salman’s deep experience in semiconductor grinding applications makes him an exceptional resource for processes improvement and optimization, utilizing Meister’s advanced superabrasive technologies. He is headquartered in central California.

Salman Kassir
Sales / Applications Engineer – Semiconductor
Phone: 805-423-6737
Email: skassir@meister-abrasives-usa.com

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*NEW* – Revised Meister Cost Calculation Tool

We’ve recently improved our popular Total Cost Calculation Tool to make it even easier to assess the total cost of your grinding process when choosing between two specified grinding wheels.

Three key comparisons: Machine cost per part; abrasive cost per part; setup cost per part.

By entering comparative data on abrasive, machine, labor, and other expenses, you’ll have the “real” unit cost of wheel-A vs. Wheel-B.  It’s a great way to make sure that you are maximizing the efficiency of your machine time.

Download your new Total Cost Calculation Tool by clinking this link to open a preview of the file and then the “download” button to open or save the file to your computer.

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CASE STUDY: hDD Dresser for Camshaft Journal Grinding

In this case study, the customer achieved significant improvements in tooling costs and part quality through the implementation of a Meister hDD porous hybrid dressing tool. This tool, with its honeycomb-like bonding matrix was able to dress the wheel more efficiently, resulting in a sharper cutting action that produced better parts with significantly less wheel and dresser wear.

Benchmark Process:

Meister hDD Dressing Tool:
DD 170×7.88×75 X=6.5 W=2.5









  • Surface finish improved/tightened from Rz 2-6µm to Rz 2-4µm
  • Stresstech measurements on ground camshafts were reduced
  • Dressing interval increased from 165 to 240 camshafts
  • Wheel life increased from 35,000 camshafts to 55,000 camshafts
  • Dresser life increased from 17-months to 23-months

The advantages of the hDD dressing system has also been observed on cam lobe grinding applications which are even more sensitive to residual stresses induced during grinding.

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Announcement – Abraxos acquires Alfons Schmeier

Andelfingen CH/Helmbrechts DE, 2.2.2017

Abraxos Holding AG, Switzerland, has taken over 100% of the shares of Alfons Schmeier GmbH & Co. KG as per 1.2.2017.

Further divisions of Abraxos Holding AG are Meister Abrasives Switzerland, USA, Italy and Asia Pacific. With this acquisition, the Group expands its global presence and cements its position as the world market leader in precision internal grinding.

The product portfolios of Meister and Schmeier are a perfect match and offer enormous potential for further joint innovation thanks to combined technical know-how. Customer focus as well as applications engineering knowledge will be further enhanced.

Both companies’ product ranges will continue to be available in their well-known superior quality and will continue to be manufactured in the existing sites. Both brands, Meister and Schmeier, will remain and will be sold side-by-side.

Eventually, the sales organisations will be restructured following the “one face to the customer” principle. However, in the short-term, it is business as usual. Ordering processes remain the same. Customers ordering from both suppliers are kindly asked to continue placing enquires and orders with both suppliers, as they are used to. All customers will be contacted before any changes apply.

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