CNC (Computer Numerical Controlled) engraving machines are high speed and precision-designed for machining and industrial engraving of metals, plastics, aluminum, graphite, ceramics and almost any non-ferrous material. They can be as simple as a home-made drilling machine for drilling a series of holes or a large complex unit with various tools and tables.
CNC machines are designed to be operated either totally unsupervised or with a few personnel overseeing a production unit consisting of a group of machines. Once programmed, the machine can be left almost completely unmanned. Many of these machines are designed to self-change tools by a predetermined sequence and reposition the component to a new side to finish the task. Manpower issues are addressed since these machines can run by themselves throughout the day.
Since they are computer programmed and operated, CNC machines are far more precise and consistent than any human guided system. CNC machining is practically error-free since the device runs according to programming specifications. Complicated machining projects can be accomplished regardless of how often the task is repeated. The product will be finished to exact specifications each time.
It is relatively easy to learn and set up programming for CNC machines. All that is needed is to enter the instructions into the computer program. Setting details from a previous job can be quickly and easily recalled so time-consuming manual changeovers are not an issue.
A typical aluminum parts machining has two tables and an automatic pallet changer. This cuts down on valuable time because one component can be machined on one table while the materials for a new component can be loaded on another. The types of CNC machines available are as varied as the tasks they can accomplish, such as turning, drilling, grinding. Machining centers can perform milling, boring, tapping, as well as complex contouring operations.
This kind of machining is not totally confined to any type of industry. These devices can also be used for working on materials like wood, plastic along with metal fabricating projects. Also available are units for domestic use. A typical CNC system for home usually include a CNC mill or lathe, a 4-axis rotary table, along with a computer and CNC programming software, and the required set of machining tools and accessories. This is ideal for those needing to produce a series of small identical components. CNC machines may be equipped with two, three, five axes on up.