• Co-op Concept & Fabrication

CNC Capabilities in Kingston: When Should I Take Advantage of It?

CNC Capabilities in Kingston demonstrate quite a lot of advantages over the other manufacturing processes. However, it does not mean it is always the appropriate for every manufacturing application. Some other manufacturing processes may still prove its suitability over CNC capabilities depending on many factors. For instance, materials and size considerations.

CNC Capabilities Overview

CNC, which stands for ‘computer numerical control’, is one of the manufacturing processes that Co-op Concept and Fabrication uses. Fabricators employ computerized controls and machine tools in order to remove layers from a material and produce a custom-designed part. With that saying, CNC Capabilities in Kingston exemplify a subtractive manufacturing process. Unlike 3D printing that belongs to additive processes, CNC machining gets rid of layers of the material from a stock piece – also known as the blank or workpiece. Thus, you can produce custom shapes and designs from it. While additive manufacturing process assembles layers of the material in order to produce the desired shape and form.

CNC Machining Process

CNC machining evolved from the traditional numerical control (NC) programming and has now become more advanced in terms of automation, precision, and production. The basic processes of CNC machining include:

  1. CAD model designing

  2. CAD file to CNC program conversion

  3. CNC machine preparation

  4. Machine operation

Designing the CAD Model

Designers and manufacturers begin by creating a 2D vector or 3D vector using computer-aided design (CAD) software. This manufacturing software helps in producing a model and specifying necessary technical specifications such as dimensions and geometries.

The designs produced are sometimes limited due to the CNC machine and tooling capabilities. For instance, we know that most of the CNC machine tooling is cylindrical in shape. The geometries parts of the design will be limited since the tooling creates curved corner sections. Aside from that, the material in use, tooling design, and machine’s workholding capabilities restrict the design possibilities too.

Finally, it will be exported into a CNC file format like STEP or IGES.

Converting CAD File to CNC Program

A computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) software will run the CNC-compatible file format. This will be in charge of generating the program in order to extract the geometry part. It controls the entire CNC machine and manipulates the tooling to produce the design.

Two of the commonly known programming languages that CNC machines use are G-code and M-code. G-code refers to the general or geometric code that takes charge of the machine controls. It includes controlling where, when, and how the CNC machine will move.

An example is controlling the paths to take, when to turn it on or off, and how often should it travel a certain path. M-code on the other hand refers to the miscellaneous functions. It controls the machine’s auxiliary functions like the automation of removing and replacing the machine cover.

The operator can start loading the file to the CNC machine once the CNC program is generated.

Preparing the CNC Machine

Such preparations need to be performed first prior to running the CNC program to the machine. This includes:

  • Securing the workpiece into the machine, onto its machinery spindles, or into machine vises.

  • Attaching the tooling required to the components like the drill bits and the end mills.

Operating the CNC Machine

Finally, after all the designs and machine preparations, you may now initiate the program. It serves as a load of instructions for the CNC machine to follow. Guiding the machine all throughout the process as it executes necessary machine operations will produce a custom-designed part or product.

CNC Machining Capabilities

  • Turning (Contour Turning, Form Turning, Taper Turning, Straight Turning)

  • Facing

  • Threading (Internal Threading, External Threading)

  • Parting/Cutting

  • Drilling

  • Boring

  • Counter-boring

  • Countersinking

  • Pocketing

  • Profiling

  • Reaming

  • Tapping

  • Thread Milling

  • Knurling

  • Broaching

  • Sawing

  • Grinding

  • Honing

  • Lapping

Software Applications Used for CNC Machining

  • CAD Software - Computer-aided Design Software

  • CAM Software - Computer-aided Manufacturing Software

  • CAE Software - Computer-aided Engineering Software

CNC Machining Materials

  • Metals (Aluminum, Brass, Stainless Steel, Alloy Steel, etc.)

  • Plastic (PEEK, PTFE, nylon, etc.)

  • Wood

  • Foam

  • Composites

Advantages of CNC Machining

  • With computer-controlled networks, less machines will be required for producing a project.

  • Equipment inspection systems with semi or fully automated quality control.

  • Fabricating will be complex and intricate with greater accuracy and faster turnover rates.

  • An easier and quicker way of setting up and integrating the machine resulting to a greater productivity.

  • Increased adaptability and wider range of machining tasks.

  • Machining trial is shortened as it runs under CNC programs already.

Final Thoughts

With CNC Capabilities in Kingston, designers and manufacturers are able to produce a range of products suitable for a wide variety of industries. For instance, medical equipment, automobile frames, airplane engines, tools and many more. In order to produce a custom-designed part or product, one must design a model using a CAD software and initiate the program into the machine. The CNC machining processes aren’t as simple as you may think. It encompasses a lot of different computer-controlled machining operations that include mechanical, chemical, electrical, and thermal processes.

A CNC machine is capable of doing everything just like what a regular machine can do. Moreover, it comes with the added benefits of computerized precision. When used in the right setting, a CNC machine can deliver you an efficient, safe, quick, and cost-efficient part or product.

To know more information about CNC Millwork Services we could offer, give us a call! You can also check out our recent fabrication projects to know more about the designs.

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