What is CNC Machining What Role Does It Play in Modern Manufacturing?
CNC machining plays a vital role in the evolving world of modern manufacturing. But what is CNC, exactly? How does it play a role in the manufacturing industry, and what do CNC machinists do? Even more so, how can aspiring CNC machinists successfully prepare for – and land – a job in CNC machining today? As a leading manufacturing and machining school in Connecticut, Goodwin College breaks down all the details below, starting with the basics:
What is CNC?
CNC stands for Computerized Numerical Control. It is a computerized manufacturing process in which pre-programmed software and code controls the movement of production equipment. CNC machining controls a range of complex machinery, such as grinders, lathes, and turning mills, all of which are used to cut, shape, and create different parts and prototypes. On the day to day, CNC machinists combine elements of mechanical design, technical drawings, mathematics, and computer programming skills to produce a variety of metal and plastic parts. CNC operators can take a sheet of metal and turn it into a critical airplane or automobile part.
What is a CNC Machine?
Computer Numerical Control machines are automated machines, which are operated by computers executing pre-programmed sequences of controlled commands. CNC machines are essentially the opposite of “old-school” devices that are manually controlled by hand wheels or levers, or mechanically automated by cams alone. Today’s modern CNC machines understand and function using CNC machining language – called G-code – which tells them precise measurements for production, like feed rate, speed, location, and coordination.
Today’s design and mechanical parts for CNC systems are highly automated – unlike the old, dangerous, factory machines you’d think of back in the day. The parts’ mechanical dimensions are defined using computer-aided design (CAD) software, and then translated into manufacturing directives by computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) software. Therefore, it is important to have knowledgeable CNC machinists and programmers in the industry to operate this high-tech machinery.
The Importance of CNC Machining
Manufacturers in Connecticut are leaders in making vital products in the industry, such as jet engines, helicopters, and submarines. And, thanks to recent advancements in technology, gone are the days of gritty factory life. Workers today use their machining skills in a clean, professional setting with advanced and cutting-edge technology.
Questions To Ask Yourself If You Are Thinking Of Buying A Laser Engraver
Laser engravers are a useful tool and it makes sense to purchase one if you use it often enough. If you are considering buying a laser engraver, there are many things that you need to think about before buying it. There are a number of options to choose from and there are good reasons to choose one kind of engraver over another one. It is important to weigh the pros and cons of each of the laser engraver before you decide on the one that you would like to purchase. Here are some questions that you should ask yourself before you decide to purchase a laser engraver.
1. How Often Will I Use It?
If you only plan on using the laser engraver once in a while, it may not be the best option to purchase a laser engraver. It may be more cost-effective for you to simply rely on a professional laser engraving service to manage your project. With a professional service, you can just have the company manage your projects for you and you can trust that it will be done properly. However, if you are planning on using your engraver very often, you have to decide which one is best for the kinds of project that you will be working on.
2. Is a Laser Engraver Difficult to Learn How to Use?
If you are worried about learning how to use a laser engraver, that shouldn’t prevent you from buying a laser engraver. You can use many different kinds of design software with laser engravers, so you may not need to learn how to use a new design software in order to use the laser engraver. Once the system and the laser engraver has been set up it is simple to understand how to use.
3. What Materials Will I Be Engraving?
Laser engravers are extremely useful because of the variety of materials that they can engrave. You should think about the different projects that you will be working on and the materials that you are engraving before you choose which laser engraver you wish to purchase. Both the HTL QT Desktop Laser Engraver and the CO2 Laser Engraver have the ability to engrave many different types of materials. Here are the many different materials that can be engraved with a laser engraver.
Metal – Laser engraving on metal can be used for key chains, jewelry, gifts, name tags, and many other applications. The engraving is exact and can be extremely precise. You can use either the HTL QT Desktop Laser Engraver and the CO2 Laser Engraver to engrave many different types of metals.
Plastic and Rubber – The benefit of using laser engravers instead of a traditional engraver is that you can very precisely engrave plastic without needing to worry about melting the plastic. The CO2 Laser Engraver is the best option for anyone who is planning on engraving on plastic or rubber.
Glass or Crystal – Since glass and crystal are so brittle, they cannot be engraved with a traditional engraver. With a laser engraver, you can get permanent, precise engravings that are perfect for awards, trophies, or even wine glasses. The CO2 Laser Engraver is the best option for engraving on glass.
Paper – Using a laser engraver to cut paper is an excellent use of a laser engraver. It can be used to create invitations, artwork, and other creative uses. A laser engraver can make custom cuts and designs. The HTL QT Desktop Laser Engraver and the CO2 Laser Engraver can both be used to engrave paper.
4. Are There Any Materials that Should Not Be Engraved?
This is something that you definitely need to know before you begin doing engraving. You want to make sure that you are not using the laser engraver on anything that could potentially damage what you are trying to engrave. Also, certain things could react with the laser and they could be harmful to you. For example, when PVC is cut with a CO2 laser, it can create hydrochloric acid and toxic fumes which are dangerous for you, and less importantly, will corrode the laser engraver itself. It is important for you to discuss this with the company that you purchase the laser engraver from to ensure that you only engrave what is safe and best for you and the laser engraver.
What Size of a Laser Engraver Do I Need?
While both the HTL QT Desktop Laser Engraver and the CO2 Laser Engraver have a compact design, the size of the laser engraver depends on the projects that you will be working on. You will need an engraver that will easily fit in your office space or workshop but will be large enough to handle the projects that you will be working on. If you are working on extremely large projects, you may want to use a professional service. However, if you are working on smaller projects, then either the HTL QT Desktop Laser Engraver or the CO2 Laser Engraver will be an excellent option.
6. Where Should I Place My Laser Engraver?
Before you purchase your laser engraver, it is a good idea to think about where you will be placing it. You need to make sure that you have enough space in your workshop or office for your laser engraver, and you also need to make sure that it is properly ventilated. It is a good idea to keep your laser engraver about a foot away from any walls or barriers. This ensures that air can circulate through the engraver’s fans and keep the engraver cool throughout the engraving process. You need to also be able to plug it into an outlet that is able to provide the right amount of electricity that the laser engraver needs.
Choosing the Right Laser Engraver for Your Needs
Before deciding which laser engraver you want to purchase, it is important that you walk yourself through these questions, but also discuss any further questions with the company that you purchase the laser engraver from. Talk to the company about what you are planning on using your engraver for and they should be able to recommend helping you choose the best engraver for your needs. This will ensure that you are completely informed before you begin to use your laser engraver.
What Is Cutting Tool?
A cutting tool is a wedge-shaped and sharp-edged device that is used to remove excess layers of material from the workpiece by shearing during machining in order to obtain the desired shape, size, and accuracy. It is rigidly mounted on the machine tool. A relative velocity between workpiece and cutting tool is also provided by various mechanical and other arrangements for cutting action.
The majority of these tools are designed exclusively for metals. There are several different types of single-edge cutting tools that are made from a variety of hardened metal alloys that are ground to a specific shape in order to perform a specific part of the turning process resulting in a finished machined part.
Single edge cutting tools are used mainly in the turning operations performed by a lathe in which they vary in size as well as alloy composition depending on the size and the type of material being turned.
These cutting tools are held stationary by what is known as a tool post which is what manipulates the tools to cut the material into the desired shape. Single edge cutting tools are also the means of cutting material performed by metal shaping machines and metal planning machines which remove material by means of one cutting edge.
Milling and drilling tools are often multipoint tools. Drilling is exclusively used to make holes in a workpiece. All drill bits have two cutting edges that are ground into two equally tapered angles which cut through the material by applying downward rotational force.
How to Cut Stone With a Circular Saw Or Angle Grinder
Begin by using an electric rotary hammer and masonry bit to drill holes spaced 4 inches apart across the stone face.
Insert a steel wedge and pair of steel feathers (shims) into each hole.
Use a hammer to alternately tap each wedge into the hole.
Continue to lightly tap each wedge until the stone cracks in two.
How to Cut Stone With a Hand Tracer
Set the tracer on top of the stone and tap it with the hammer. Move the tracer down an inch or so and strike it again.
Continue in this fashion until you've a cut line across the stone.
Move the hand tracer back to the beginning and repeat—tap it, move it, tap it, move it—until the stone splits in two.
How to Cut Stone With a Stone Buster Hammer
Set the buster on top of the stone, then strike it sharply with a hammer to cut a line across the stone. Repeat until the stone splits.
How to Trim a Stone Tile Edge
Hold the carbide handset at an angle to the stone, then strike the handset with a hammer to chip off small pieces of stone.
Use a carbide-tipped hand point to chip protrusions and high spots off of a stone face.
To smooth and even out the surface of a stone, lightly tap it with a bushing hammer.
Continue to tap the stone until achieving the desired level of smoothness.