Types of Mandrel for Different Machining and Manufacturing

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Explore the world of machining and manufacturing with different types of mandrels. From solid to expanding mandrels, dive into their applications and benefits for precision work. Typically constructed from steel, mandrels find applications in various industries, including machining, lathes, industrial processes, and jewelry manufacturing.

What is a Mandrel?

A Mandrel, also known as an arbor, is a tool component utilized to securely hold or clamp the material being machined or other movable tool components. In addition, These types of mandrels can come in the form of shaped metal bars that are inserted inside or positioned adjacent to the workpiece that is undergoing machining.

Essentially, a mandrel is a cylindrical or tapered rod, such as a shaft or spindle, designed to aid in holding or shaping the workpiece.

Primary Uses of a Mandrel

types of mandrel

  • Workpiece Securement: A mandrel serves as an effective alternative to fastening the workpiece directly onto the machine’s chuck, offering improved workpiece stability.
  • Forging and Reshaping: In the jewelry sector, specialized ring mandrels, sometimes referred to as tribelets, play a pivotal role in the forging and reshaping of rings. These mandrels are instrumental in crafting and reshaping ring jewelry.

Specifications of the Mandrel:

Product specifications for mandrels typically encompass the following parameters:

  • Diameter Hole Size: This indicates the diameter of the hole or bore for which the mandrel is designed. So, It ensures compatibility with the workpiece or tool it will be used with.
  • Tool Type and Series: Specifies the type of tool or machinery with which the mandrel is compatible. In addition, It may also include information about the tool series or model.
  • Drill-Collar Size: In cases where the mandrel is used in drilling operations, So the drill-collar size denotes the dimensions of the collar that attaches to the mandrel.
  • Length: The overall length of the mandrel is an essential factor in determining its suitability for specific applications.
  • Body Diameter: This measurement indicates the diameter of the mandrels’ central body or shaft. It affects the mandrels’ strength and stability.
  • Blade Length: In situations where the mandrel incorporates blades or cutting elements, the blade length is specified to ensure proper cutting or shaping capabilities.
  • Fishing Neck: The fishing neck refers to the portion of the mandrel used for connection or attachment. So Specifications for the fishing neck include its size and design for compatibility with machinery or other components.
  • Weight: The weight of the mandrel is important for handling and balancing purposes. It helps operators determine the appropriate equipment and procedures for safe usage.

Types of Mandrel

So there are several types of mandrel used for holding workpieces in various machining and manufacturing applications:

Solid Mandrel (Plain Mandrel):

A solid mandrel is a straightforward cylindrical, tapered bar with one end having a larger diameter than the other. It features slots at both ends, with one end accommodating a lathe dog and the other providing a center hole for the dead center. Solid mandrels are used for plain workpieces and are available in various sizes.

Step Mandrel:

Unlike a plain mandrel, a step mandrel has step collars of different diameters fitted onto it. So This design allows it to hold workpieces with varying diameters, making it suitable for workpieces with steps or varying dimensions.

Gang Mandrel:

A gang mandrel consists of a fixed collar at one end and a threaded, movable collar at the other. It is designed for holding hollow workpieces between these collars and can accommodate multiple workpieces simultaneously, reducing machining time. It is used in manufacturing.

Collar Mandrel:

The collar mandrel is a lighter version of the plain mandrel, featuring two fixed collars attached at both ends. So It is used for securing large workpieces with diameters exceeding 100 mm.

Screwed Mandrel:

This mandrel type features a fixed collar and an open threaded end, allowing threaded workpieces to be securely fastened for machining. It is employed when the workpiece has threaded internal features.

Cone Mandrel:

A cone mandrel includes a fixed cone at one end and a sliding cone at the other, which can be adjusted or removed using a nut. So This design enables it to hold workpieces of various sizes between the two cones.

Expanding Mandrel:

So the expanding mandrel is a more complex design featuring a mounted bush over a tapered arbor with a tapered hole and three longitudinal cuts. Two of these cuts are nearly through, while the third is full-length.

Ring Mandrels (Triblets):

Ring mandrels are cylindrical, tapered tools primarily used in the jewelry industry for forging, shaping, and reshaping rings. They may also feature ring size markings for measurement purposes.

    Why do we need Mandrels?

    So Mandrels serve several essential purposes in machining and manufacturing processes:

    • Workpiece Holding: Mandrels are used to securely hold workpieces that a chuck or faceplate cannot accommodate. This is particularly crucial when working with workpieces whose axes have been drilled or bored.
    • Enhanced Precision: Mandrels enable workpieces to rotate around their center accurately. This precision is essential for achieving accurate and consistent machining results. So, Without a mandrel, there is a higher risk of workpiece deflection and imprecise machining.
    • Preventing Workpiece Deflection: When machining operations such as drilling or boring are performed, various forces act on the workpiece, causing it to deflect away from the center. Because Mandrels provide critical support, minimizing the chances of workpiece deflection and ensuring that the machining operation proceeds as intended.


    Mandrels are essential tools in machining and manufacturing. They securely hold workpieces, enhance precision, and prevent workpiece deflection during operations. Their historical importance and versatility make them invaluable in modern industries, ensuring accuracy and reliability in various applications. So the Types of mandrels used for holding workpieces in various machining and manufacturing applications


    What is the primary purpose of using mandrels in machining?

    Mandrels are primarily used to securely hold workpieces that cannot be accommodated by chucks or faceplates, ensuring precision and preventing workpiece deflection during operations.

    What historical significance do mandrels hold in manufacturing processes?

    Mandrels have been employed in metalworking and manufacturing since ancient times, highlighting their enduring importance in achieving accuracy and quality in modern machining.

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    Andrew Reed
    Andrew Reed

    Andrew Reed: 10-year lathe expert and founder of a renowned lathe blog, sharing invaluable insights and techniques with enthusiasts and professionals alike.

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