Due to its efficacy, accuracy, and precision – Computerized Numerical Control (CNC) machines have become a vital tool for manufacturing companies, especially those that cater the demands of these industries – Medical, Optical, Military Defense, Commercial Goods, Aerospace, Transportation, Petroleum, Marine, and Electronics – these machine are vital for reproducing high quality and reliable parts and tools.
Depending on the demands of a certain industry, there are several types of CNC machines that were developed in order to produce identical and high quality parts and products. Each of these machines has different purposes depending on the manufacturing process that the raw materials need to undergo. To date, there are ten types of CNC machines, however only five (5) are most commonly used by manufacturing industries.
- Lathe CNC machine – This machine tool basically holds and rotates the material through a spindle, as it is mounted on the spindle; it moves on various axes and lets the cutting tool do its job. It generally used to shape raw materials into its desired shape and size by simply removing the unnecessary excess material from the raw material. Typical lathes operate with two axes and its cutting tool is positioned at an 8-24 turret. Unlike the conventional lathes, CNC Lathes were designed to produce products that have tighter tolerances with a fast turnaround time due to its speed. There are three (3) existing types of CNC Lathe machines –Facing, Turning, and Boring – and these machines are most commonly used for glass work, wood work, metal work, metal spinning, parts reclamation, and thermal spraying.
- Milling CNC machine – This machine utilizes an automated subtractive fabrication method by using a tool that rotates and chips a portion of a raw material that comes in contact with the rotating tool. The process of milling parts is common when opting to add a slot or threaded holes. It is also great for polishing the part and accurately shape based on the required design. There are two milling machine components namely the Horizontal and Vertical Milling. The two vary on the position of the tool axis. The most common types of CNC Milling machines are the Bed, Knee, Ram, and Planer type.
- Laser cutting CNC machine – As the name suggests, this CNC machine utilizes a laser beam that is high-powered to cut, engrave, mark, or form intricate shapes that are accurate to its unique design by melting and cutting the work piece. These laser beams come in three main types namely – Carbon Dioxide, Neodymium-doped yttrium aluminum garnet, and Fiber.
This CNC machine also utilizes optics, a compressed gas, for cooling and removing the metal that was vaporized in the process. When opting for a Laser Cutting CNC machine for your operation, you need to remember these three benefits – 1. The speed, 2. It produces less waste (therefore, cost-efficient), and 3. It works with a wide range of materials. This machine is ideal for when opt to create intricate and unique shapes and in creating small holes.
- Plasma cutting CNC machine – As the name suggests, this machine utilizes the fourth state of matter which is hot Plasma for cutting electrically conductive materials. As mentioned, this machine works best with materials that are electrically conductive and these materials are Copper, Aluminum, Brass, Stainless Steel, etc. This type of CNC machine comes in two types – Traditional and Inverter Plasma Cutters. Unlike the Laser Cutting CNC machine which is recommended for complex designs, the Plasma cutter only cuts simple shapes.
- Electric discharge CNC machine – Similar to a Plasma Cutter, Electric Discharge CNC Machines (EDMs) use electric sparks emitted through a metal wire to melt excess metal from the raw material and form it to its supposed design. It is important to remember that this machine the wire used in this machine does not come in contact with the material. It simply lets the spark jump to remove the excess material in order to avoid distorting the wire or damage the part. These machines are recognized for its precision, ability to produce items that have complex shapes and structure, and works with any electrically conductive metals regardless of its hardness and conductivity. These are commonly used for creating prototypes, medical equipment, and military equipment.
Depending on your needs, the CNC machine offers a wide range of automated machines that could serve as your partner in your day-to-day manufacturing operation. When choosing your right partner, always consider the materials that will be used, the items that you opt to produce, and the intended design to make sure it matches well with the machines’ purpose. Proudly boasting membership to the Machinery Dealers National Association, Tramar Industries is the clear choice for CNC machines of all types. If you’re in need of a CNC machine, browse our extensive inventory of used CNC machines and contact Tramar Industries today!