We get up in the morning from our metal-framed bed. We grab the handle of the coffee maker in the kitchen, and then we get into the car, close the door softly and start the engine. On a daily basis, we don't even notice how often we use equipment and devices that may have been created by a machining technology called CNC turning.
What CNC Turning is all about?
The concept of metal turning is very simple. The workpiece is clamped in special tusks or on a suitable chuck of a lathe that rotates. When the workpiece makes a rotary movement, the lathe knife moves parallel to the axis of rotation of the workpiece, perpendicular to it or performs both movements together. In this way, the top layers of metal are separated.
Turned parts acquire cylindrical, conical or spherical shapes. Various types of axes, bushings, cylinders, rings, washers or screws are created.
Nowadays CNC (Computerized Numerical Control) turning is a completely automated process in which the machine is controlled by special software..
In order for a factory to realize custom turning, 3 elements are needed:
- Computer-aided design (CAD) execution.
- Translation of the design into a lathe control plan (CAM).
- Turning proper (CNC).
CNC Turning – from antiquity to microcomputers
Today, walking through the hall of automated CNC lathes, it's hard to imagine that this method of metalworking goes back in history... to ancient Egypt. Back then, the driving force was a man who pulled a string wound on a rotating shaft mounted on two bearings. The turning method was developed by Leonardo da Vinci, perfecting the lathe drive.
The development of computer control in machining was in the early 1950s. After the end of World War II, industry needed new technologies to speed up the mass production of parts and semi-finished products.
Initially, metal cutting machines were programmed using letters and numbers, or NC (Numerical Control). The first computer-controlled machine was developed in 1952 in the United States.
The development of CNC turning was then revolutionized by microprocessors, which began to be used en masse in industry from the 1980s. Thanks to microprocessors, it was possible to minimize the size of control systems, and to develop machine control through a graphical interface and computer software.
What types of CNC Turning we distinguish?
In metal cutting, there are 4 basic types of turning:
- Longitudinal turning – the direction of the knife feed is parallel to the axis of rotation of the workpiece. It is most often performed in two passes of the knife - the first is defined as rough turning, and the second - fine turning or precision turning.
- Transverse turning – the direction of the knife feed is perpendicular to the axis of rotation of the workpiece.
- Copy turning – cutting is done according to a pattern controlling the knife feed motion along any line.
- Shape turning – cutting of short non-cylindrical rotary solids using a knife with blades in the shape of the workpiece.
CNC Turning technology - advantages
CNC turning is primarily precision turning. A computer-controlled machine can make any shape with accuracy to the hundredth of a millimeter, so each turned part is identical. As a result, parts obtained by CNC turning can meet even the most stringent approval standards.
Cutting precision also means optimal use of material, which, combined with shorter lead times for turned parts, translates into clear financial benefits.
Computer control also means fewer errors due to the human factor. The computer guides the lathe blade, and the specialist only supervises the operation of the software. As a result, CNC-turned parts are more reliable than those made by the traditional method..
CNC Turning indicator
Custom turning is offered by factories specializing in the production of metal parts and components. Thus, the basic efficiency indicator of CNC turning is the number of parts machined, for example, in an hour.
What does the turning rate depend on? CNC turning efficiency is influenced by:
- A good CNC control system responsible for optimizing the turning process.
- A clear software interface to facilitate turning control.
- Implementation of a failure prevention system.
- Use of modern and efficient machine tools
- Automation of the process
- Appropriate selection of machining strategies and cutting tools,
- Effective quality control system.
Of course, one should not forget about turners, who today are specialists with high competence in CNC machine control.
Where CNC Turning is used?
CNC-turned parts are not only aluminum, steel or copper. This technology can also be used to machine plastics. In addition, modern cutting machines can produce geometrically complex parts that require both turning and milling at the same time.
For this reason, precision CNC turning allows you to produce components both for very specialized constructions (automation, electrical engineering, medicine) and for everyday objects (bicycles, household appliances, furniture).
What the price of CNC turning depends on?
If you are looking for metalworking services, you definitely want to know what the price of CNC turning you need to prepare for.
The price list of CNC turning, however, depends on many factors, including::
- type of turned material,
- thickness of the turned material,
- the complexity of the project,
- additional services,
- the size of the order.
That is why at RADMOT we value cooperation only when we know the client's expectations in order to give him a certain answer. We also want each client to know exactly what constitutes the final order valuation.
CNC turning – contact us
At RADMOT we offer both CNC milling services, CNC turning services, as well as many additional services - washing, anodizing, laser marking and assembly.
Contact us and tell us what you need. Our valuation is completely free. And if you have doubts about which technology will work best for you, our expertise is at your service.