7 Key Industries That Benefit From CNC Machining
When precision machined components are required, more and more industries are reaping the benefits of outsourced CNC machining.
Reduced development time, improved stock management and higher quality end products are just a few of the realized opportunities, resulting in significant cost savings, improved productivity and increased profits.
The Evolution of CNC Machines
Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machines produce complex parts for any application, rapidly, and with very high levels of accuracy.
Computerized design processes convert easily into physical end products that have been modeled and extensively checked in 3D, saving time and money in the development process.
Automation of each production step, using precision CNC machine tools and accurate computer positioning means that every finished part is identical, whether one of them, or one thousand of them, is produced.
Traditionally, 3 axis CNC machines were designed to work in the 3D space of planes x,y and z. Adding rotary motion to two of these axes improves capability and accuracy, reclassifying the equipment as 5 axis CNC machining. This development allows for more sophisticated components to be created with incredible precision and accuracy, along with the additional benefits of a reduced machine setting time, higher process efficiency and improved final surface finish.
‘Swiss-style’ manufacturing adds a guide bushing to the main spindle that allows the work piece to be moved, keeping it close to the cutting tool at all times during machining, eliminating the potential for errors due to deflection over distance when forming long, slender parts with complex geometries.
Benefits to Industry
Adoption of CNC machining can improve every aspect of the manufacturing process; however, certain industries derive very specific benefits from its implementation.
The need for high accuracy and repeatability in the Aerospace industry, combined with the necessity to ensure part history for audits, makes CNC machining of components an obvious choice. Tolerances within the order of ±0.0001” are required to ensure the compliance and safety of extremely critical aeronautical parts. With most components being made in aluminum, for its strength to weight ratio, CNC machining provides the ideal solution for creating everything from simple, high tolerance spacers to sophisticated bearing housings.
Commercial products require repeatability across high volumes whilst remaining competitive in their pricing. The flexibility of CNC machining allows for production of a vast spectrum of component sizes and limitless shapes in a wide range of materials. For new product development, CAD prototyping, 3D graphics and modeling allow the opportunity to correct design flaws by producing a prototype that can be visually checked and approved before rapidly being put into production. Modifications and variations to existing products are also quick to implement, with short lead times to launch.
A wide range of defense applications, from communication equipment to tank parts, can be sourced from a CNC machining specialist supplier. Defense industry partners, however, need to have the same commitment to quality with reliable delivery to ensure that vital CNC manufactured components meet strict industry standards and adhere to the necessary government safety codes. In this industry there is no room for error; tolerances must be met and machine tools monitored for wear. CNC machines conduct their own in-process measurement and quality assurance, intrinsic to the machining operation, which ensures vital components are reproduced identically, however large the quantity.
With the continued trend of miniaturization in consumer electronics, components are becoming smaller and more powerful, whilst needing to remain lightweight and compact. CNC small scale and micromachining can handle the specialized materials required, holding to very tight tolerances for the very smallest component, even throughout the highest volume production runs. A wide variety of production parts can be designed and produced by CNC machines for the electronics industry. High process reliability through integrated CAD/CAM solutions means that products can be rapidly put into production after the prototyping and testing process is completed.
ISO 9001:2008 certification becomes very important in ensuring the required accuracy and precision is attained in the production of supplies and accessories for firearms. CNC machining is able to provide in-process monitoring and quality assurance, producing parts that exactly match their specifications whilst maintaining ultra-tight tolerances of ±0.0001″. Integrating easily with databases, CNC machine programs are able to record full information on every part produced, such as component and material sourcing details and serial numbers as they are engraved, for easy item tracking and recording.
In components used in medical devices and equipment, life can depend on impeccable precision. CNC machining solutions self-monitor and adjust for accuracy and repeatability and are often used in the manufacture of medical instruments, as well as for making orthotic devices and surgical implants. CNC machines are able to process the necessary specialized materials and provide a completed final product, even down to a knurled or mirror finish with no requirement for further processing. Recording and producing its own documentation, CNC equipment can provide the automated reports necessary for product tracking and FDA process approval. When new products are developed, the fast prototyping capability allowed by CNC machining reduces time to market through the iteration stages, producing small runs efficiently and yet scaling up easily to high volume production when required.
Partnering with a CNC machining specialist saves time in all processes from prototyping to production, which is especially valuable in the optical industry where multiple trials are performed during the product development phase. Design improvements are easily implemented and tested and, once in production, the short lead times and high levels of quality control in the CNC machining process become vital to ensuring profitability. A good example is the manufacture of glass spectacle lenses, which are cut using CNC controlled water jets that can be directed to produce intricate features such as precisely angled bevels, steps and grooves that would be difficult to produce using other manufacturing methods.
Benefits to You
- Rapid prototyping, with expert engineering support, speeds the design and development process. Outsourcing CNC machining increases a company’s capability without incurring expensive equipment and tooling costs.
- Reduced development, setup and production times mean that raw materials are turned into final products more quickly and efficiently with the ability for improved planning and forecasting.
- Faster, safer processes ripple through into improved end results, in terms of quality and reliability, especially in industries where consistent, measured results are critical.
- Improved inventory management and reduced manufacturing cycles convert into dramatic savings in stock and energy costs, as well as shorter lead times, when sourcing from a professional CNC machine shop.
Why not enjoy all of these benefits by using the machining and manufacturing services of a leading CNC industry expert for your parts and assemblies?
With over 20 material options and bulletproof tracking and documentation of every part through the whole facility, Millennium Precision is proud to partner as a supplier of top quality machined components to vital industries.
ISO 9001:2015 certified for delivering exceptional Swiss-style CNC machining services, Millennium Precision is certain to have the manufacturing capability to meet your requirements.
Visit Millennium Precision’s website to see how working with a quality CNC machining specialist will add value to your business today.