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This article describes the sectioning process, some general practices, common tools, and guidelines on how to select a cutting tool for a given metallographic sectioning operation. It provides a discussion on the consumable-abrasive cutting and nonconsumable-abrasive cutting methods for metallographic sectioning. Other methods, including the use of hacksaws, shears, burning torches, wire saws, and electrical discharge machining, are also reviewed. The article reviews the issues related to the specimen test location for certification work as well as process troubleshooting and component failure analysis.

Mounting of the specimen is often desirable or necessary for handling and metallographic polishing after...

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