The Complete Guide To CNC Machining

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The CNC machining process is one of the most exciting and fastest-growing industries in manufacturing. There are so many opportunities for people to get into this business, from designing parts to programming machines. The Complete Guide To CNC Machining will teach you everything you need to know about how these processes work, and why it’s important that your company invest in a modernized machine.

Essential Guide to CNC Machining

There are three main types of automated processes: Drilling, Milling, Turning. These might sound like regular old tasks by hand but when done with a computer-controlled device they result in precise operations that save time as well as money and manpower resources. When each step has been programmed correctly (code), then there should be little human intervention. We have created this article by ensuring the best quality information about CNC machining so that you can have proper ideas. Experts from ArtMachining, a well-known CNC machining company in China, helped us to create this quality article.


CNC Drilling

A CNC drill is a machine that can use different bits to drill holes in metal, wood, or other materials. The pieces of the drilling process are:

  • The blank piece being worked on, which rides above the table and moves back and forth as it’s fed into the chuck by an indexing mechanism; this movement allows for proper chip evacuation from the cutting area and prevents interference with nearby parts when working on multiple items at once.
  • The spindle head assembly, including both fixed position drills (mounted directly onto the spindle) and tool changers (interface between a holding device or magazine containing interchangeable tools).

CNC Milling

Machining workpieces using milling machines typically involves roughing with small end mills and finishing with large end mills. The head is typically a rotary table that holds one or more workpieces, but can also be equipped with linear motion to feed the cutter into the cut from either side of an indexable tool holder.

Milling operations include the followings:

  • Chamfer Milling
  • Face Milling
  • End Milling
  • Drilling, boring, and tapping

CNC Turning

Machining pieces using turning machines usually starts out by roughing it up on some kind of lathe machine before moving onto another type for fine milling; again this depends on what material you’re working in and how detailed your final product needs to be. CNC turners are often used when raw materials need to be machined down to size without compromising their shape as much as possible.


G-code program

CNC machines are programmed to move in a specific pattern or route. To do this, the machine is equipped with either linear slides, rotary axes (wrist), or both – all of which have an inherent mechanical advantage and disadvantage based on its application. This is where pre-planning becomes important as you need to know what type of motion your particular project requires before purchasing a machine that can accommodate it.

Open or Closed loop

When programming for open loops, every movement made by the milling tool will be repeated exactly when reaching the endpoint. This is best suited for operations such as drilling where the machine needs to make a hole in one specific spot. Closed loop, on the other hand, will stop at that point and return to start before moving again. This is better for milling or turning operations which require many precise cuts/moves without any variance off of center.

Fully automated

CNC machines are often equipped with automatic tool changers that can put different tools within reach of your spindle depending on what you need it to do next (drill holes, mill out material). These setups also provide an easy way to manage multiple parts by allowing you to load them onto various stations around the machine table instead of relying solely on holding work-pieces vertically while machining.

Types of CNC Machining

3-axis CNC machining

This type of machine is considered the standard, and it can be used in a wide variety of settings. It has three movements that correspond to the X, Y or Z axis movement for cutting parts from metal blocks.

4- Axis CNC Machining

This type of machine is more complicated and expensive, but it can be used in a variety of settings. It has four movements that correspond to movement on each axis—X, Y, Z as well as rotary axes for milling or turning.

5- Axis CNC Machining

For 5- Axis CNC machining, there are enabled 3-directional movements and 2 more directions of rotations additionally.

Surface Finishing Available

1.    Anodizing

Anodizing provides resistance to corrosion, wear, and abrasion. It also provides a degree of protection against chemical attack or ultraviolet light.

2.    Bead Blasting

Good for surface preparation before painting or powder coating the metal part to remove any rust, paint build-up, grease and other unwanted contaminants that may have formed on the surface during storage and assembly.

3.    Powder Coating

A finish applied by spraying flexible paints onto parts in the oven results in a tough but thin film that can be used as an economical substitute for electroplating (galvanizing) or chrome plating.

4.    Electroplating

The process of applying successive layers of metallic coatings to base metals using electricity with baths containing electrolytes such as copper sulfate without actually melting the metal.

5.    Polishing

The process of removing scratches from a metal surface by rubbing with an abrasive stone.

6.    Brushing

To apply paint, varnish, lacquer or other material to the surface of a part using a brush that is often made from animal hair such as horsehair and hog bristles.

7.    Painting

One of the most common ways to protect metals against corrosion through chemical attack is painting them. Paint provides protection for surfaces that have been mechanically abraded in order to remove any rust or dirt on its surface and also serves as an economical plastic coating over electroplated aluminum when it has lost all its luster due to oxidation.

Last Words

You can be a machinist with just basic skills. You may not need to go back to school for any sort of degree or certificate, and you may never have even taken one class in CNC mills manufacturing before. All it takes is the drive and determination that anyone has inside themselves. So many people are intimidated by the idea of trying something new without some kind of training behind them, but when you want something bad enough there’s no way anything will stop you from getting what you’re after! Hope this article will help you understand the CNC machining process easily.

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