Tooth Preparation

Suggested Preparation Features for Crowns

    Reduction Finish Line Depth & Configuration
Anterior Crowns All-Ceramic
(veneered or monolithic)
IPS e.max® or
IPS Empress Esthetic®
2.0 mm incisally
1.0 mm buccal/lingual
0.8-1.0 mm shoulder
Porcelain-fused-to-zirconia 2.0 mm incisally
0.6-1.0 mm lingual aspect
(Porcelain guidance requires greater clearance)
>0.4 mm chamfer lingually
>1.0 mm labial
Metal-ceramic
(Porcelain-fused-to-metal)
2.0 mm incisally
0.5-1.0 mm lingual aspect
(Porcelain guidance requires greater clearance) 
1.5 mm labial shoulder or heavy chamfer
0.5 mm lingual chamfer
1.5 mm circumferentially for 360-degree ceramic margin
Posterior Crowns Full contour crowns
(metal or zirconia)
1.0 mm non-functional cusps
1.5 mm functional cusps
0.3-0.5 mm  shoulder or heavy chamfer
All-ceramic
(veneered or monolithic)
IPS e.max® or
IPS Empress Esthetic®
Porcelain-fused-to-zirconia
2.0 mm non-functional cusps
2.5 mm functional cusps
1.0 mm shoulder or heavy chamfer
Metal-ceramic
(Porcelain-fused-to-metal)
If metal occlusal, as with FMC
2.0 mm non-functional cusps
2.5 mm functional cusps
1.5 mm labial shoulder or chamfer
0.5mm lingual chamfer (metal collar)
1.5 mm circumferentially for 360-degree ceramic margin

Refer to pages 82-83 of A Clinicians Guide to Prosthodontics

Suggested Burs for Preparation of Full Metal Crowns / PFM / All-Ceramic Crowns  

Restoration Preparation Area Bur
Full metal crown *Occlusal reduction & functional cusp bevel Coarse grit round end tapered diamond
*Proximal axial reduction Medium grit short needle diamond
& coarse grit round end tapered diamond
*Buccal & lingual axial reduction Coarse grit tapered torpedo diamond
*Chamfer & axial finish line Fine grit tapered torpedo diamond
PFM Anterior *Incisal & labial reduction Coarse grit flat-end tapered diamond
*Lingual reduction Coarse grit football-shaped diamond
*Initial proximal reduction Medium-grit long needle diamond
*Lingual axial reduction Coarse grit tapered torpedo diamond & finish with Fine grit tapered torpedo diamond
PFM Posterior *Occlusal reduction & functional cusp bevel Coarse grit round end tapered diamond
*Buccal reduction (2 planes) Coarse grit flat-end tapered diamond
*Proximal axial reduction Medium grit short needle diamond
*Lingual & axial reduction Coarse grit tapered torpedo & fine grit tapered torpedo diamond
*Buccal, axial and shoulder finishing Fine grit flat-end tapered diamond
All-ceramic *Incisal & labial reduction (2 planes) Coarse grit flat-end tapered diamond
*Lingual & axial reduction Coarse grit flat-end tapered diamond
*Lingual reduction Coarse grit football-shaped diamond
*Axial wall & radial shoulder Fine grit flat-end tapered diamond

Refer to pages 82-83 of A Clinicians Guide to Prosthodontics