About CNC Precision Machining
CNC (computer numerical control) is the automation of machine instruments through the use of computers which have been programmed to execute any number of commands. From wood routing to laser cutting and 3D printing, there are CNC machines for nearly every commercially utilized manufacturing process and application. CNC machining works with a variety of materials including metals, woods, acrylics, foams, and thermoplastics.
CNC systems vary in their composition as some systems combine all necessary tools into a single unit while other designs may consist of individual, tool-specific units interconnected by external controllers.Regardless of their specific composition, all modern CNC systems provide automation of the design and manufacturing process of a machined part. While CAD (computer-aided design) software defines the physical boundaries of an end product, CAM (computer-aided manufacturing) software translates those dimensions into manufacturing commands. Through the use of post processing software these commands are translated and loaded into a CNC machine.
The major advantages of CNC precision machining include the production of complex parts with a high degree of accuracy while maintaining lower production and setup costs. CNC machining assists in improving the overall degree of accuracy because it is a reliable and fully developed technology that greatly eliminates the possibility of human error. Moreover, by freeing time from operators within the production process, attention can be focused on quality assurances and offering project oversight, which helps ensure the detailed requirements of production processes are met. Regarding the reduction of costs, CNC machining not only cuts costs by reducing the necessity of skilled operators but also reduces the overall amount of material waste.
Another advantage of CNC precision machining is the improvement of workflows from prototyping to full-scale production. At the prototyping level, CNC machines allow developers to quickly build functional designs that can be used for testing. Then, when a demand builds in the marketplace, CNC machining can quickly allow for a shift into full-scale development. At each step, turnaround times are dramatically reduced, allowing companies the ability to greatly reduce missed opportunity costs.
The Federal Group’s CNC Precision Machining Capabilities
Since 1980, The Federal Group USA has provided CNC precision machining services to many types of wide-ranging industries including automotive, agricultural, furniture manufacturers, healthcare and consumer goods industries. Our stocking arrangements allow for an uninterrupted supply in which volume is never an issue and high and low capacity production runs are readily within reach. Our state-of-the-art CNC milling machines are available at sizes of up to 84” in the x-axis and 50” in the y-axis as well as in 3, 4, and 5 axis verticals.
3 axis milling machines
3 axis milling involves the manual milling of parts along the x, y, and z axis. While other machines notable have a moving bed, the 3-axis system remains still while the cutter operated. These models are multifunctional and accurate machines that are designed for the milling of sharp edges as well as well-defined holes and slots. While this form of milling is capable of producing the same products as 4 and 5 axis milling, 3 axis milling is limited in the level of detail and efficiency it can deliver in comparison to both 4 and 5 axis machines.
4 axis milling machines
The 4 axis machines include the same 3-axis’ listed above but also include an additional rotary axis. While it is surpassed in capabilities by the more advanced 5-axis machines, it is still one of the most popular milling options and can be used for many design, research, and prototyping purposes. Only a step away from the highest grade milling machines available, a 4 axis milling machine is vertically operated and functions in a high capacity manner. These machines offer a higher grade of detailed work and offer a higher competency than the 3 axis machines.
5 axis milling machines
5 axis milling machines are the fastest and most precise milling machines on the market. In addition to utilizing the x, y, and z linear axes, the 5 axis machine can rotate in 2 (A and B) axes which allows the tool to mill components from any direction. As such, these machines can produce the most complicated geometries available and are capable of not only complex shapes, but undercuts and nearly unlimited angulated surfaces and finishes. By utilizing an expanded number of planes, cycle times are drastically reduced by nearly 1/3rd the time required for a 3 axis machine.
Superior to both 3 and 4 axis machines, these machines have the capability to produce the most complex and intricate designs possible. At TFGUSA, we specialize in providing 5 axis CNC precision machining services that boast the highest accuracy, most intricate finishes, and quickest production available.
Some applications include:
- Medical, Dental, and Orthopedic Devices
- Tools and Dies
- Automotive and Aircraft