Turning in general is the machining process in which the cutting edge of the machine does not rotate. Instead the workplace (product) rotates and is addressed by the cutting bit in a multitude of axis and direction. It can describe a huge array of shapes, curves and angles, all are which are described in linear movements by the cutting bit.
CNC (Computer Numerical Control) Turning is when these described movements are computer controlled by a plotted mathematical set of instructions therefore making the whole process a lot more accurate and more efficient.
20 years ago, the switch from manual mills to CNC was the big decision. Essentially, those who didn?t switch to CNC eventually got left behind?more recently it has been the switch from 3-axis CNC machining to 5-axis CNC machining.
At Chad Engineering, we offer 5-axis CNC turning. Amongst many other benefits 5-Axis CNC Turning enables us to get the cutting bit to approach the material from any angle and therefore produce any type of product in less operations. It also reduces set-up time, number of operations & cycle time whilst increasing accuracy. See the tables below for examples of times and operations.
If you want to have a look at some of the products we fabricate then click here.
CNC milling is a different method of computer numeric controlled machining. It does however cover nearly all the same substances and materials as CNC Turning. It differs in certain aspects and is directly comparable to drilling and cutting machinery, just performing both at once. It differs from CNC Turning in that the cutting tool for milling is rotating. As with CNC Turning the product can also be moved in many ways. Similarly, 1, 3 or 5-axis to cater for some incredibly detailed end products. Both 3 and 5-axis milling require CAM programming for optimal performance due to the incredibly complex geometries involved in these machine processes. CNC Milling machines (especially 3 and 5-axis) usually require the integration of a device for pumping and delivering cutting fluid to the cutting tool itself. This not only lubricates but also cools the cutting action increasing the efficiency and therefore lowering cost.
Example of CNC Endmills
CNC Milling is best utilised to manufacture very intricate low frequency, short run or bespoke products. CNC Milling is perfect for prototyping for example. Even though tooling and production costs continue to decrease, simple designs and high frequency products are better served by other production methods.
Virtually any type of material that can be drilled or cut, can be milled, although it is mostly a metal being worked on?especially in our factory. As with all other types of machining the cutting tools, end mills and cutting speeds must all be factored in, making every job bespoke!
EDM (Spark Erosion)
EDM CNC machine during operation.
Electrical Discharge Machining (Also known as EDM, Spark Erosion or Wire Erosion) is a process where a required ?shape? or ?cut? is obtained by an electrical discharge between 2 electrodes. The electrical current is applied in pulses and this series of pulse reactions can be harnessed to accurately erode the material. The waste material, or debris that is eroded is then removed and then more material can be eroded?thus creating a cut or required shape.
The 2 electrodes which are reacting together are named the ?tool? and the ?workpiece?. The reaction between them can only happen if they do not make contact and actually removes material from both. The debris is then carried away by using a liquid called Dielectric Liquid, this substance also increases the accuracy of the cut.
Some of the advantages of EDM include machining of:
- Intricate detail that would be difficult to machine with traditional cutting tools
- Extremely close tolerances on some of the world?s hardest materials
- Allows the workpiece to be very small, compared to traditional cutting tools that can damage a workpiece due to excess pressure
- There is no direct contact between tool and work piece. Therefore delicate sections and weak materials can be machined without any distortion.
- A good surface finish can be obtained.
- Very fine holes can be easily drilled.
The process itself can be utilised for many different project types although mostly it is used for machining extremely hard materials which cannot be machined using more traditional techniques. It is however restricted due to the process requiring electrically conductive materials although there is constant development in this.
At Chad Engineering, we pride ourselves on our customer service and engineering prowess. We have collated a vast amount of experience doing a plethora or different types of engineering for many different industries. No matter what industry or size of job, these projects all have 1 thing in common?quality control.
We take the quality of our products above all other factors. Yes, of course we like to finish early of an evening, but if a projects quality is in question, then we stay all night! If a component doesn?t comply to our rigorous testing parameters?then we do it again, and again, and again. We keep going until we are happy and all fabrication test parameters are met.
The result of this is 2-fold:
- We can go to bed feeling happy with our days? work, having cut no corners.
- You, the client can rest assured you are receiving a top quality fabricated component, fit for purpose.
Therefore, we retain our professional relationships and they continue to use and recommend us.
Some projects may involve many production processes, materials and fabrication companies. Clients may request or specify that we assemble components on their behalf. There are many reasons for this due to time constraints or order intricacy but mostly it is because it is something we do very well?of course we do!
High precision components, (whether manufactured by Chad Engineering or another engineering/fabrication company), require highly skilled, efficient assembly lines. Chad will happily work alongside other companies involved in the production process and help facilitate the completion of your project.
Design and Prototyping
At Chad we utilise the cutting edge of technology (pun intended!) for our design and prototyping. Using?the latest edition of SolidCam and SolidWorks to design and prototype parts and drawings for our clients. All initial parts and prototypes?are manufactured to?customer requirements within required?tolerances. These new prototype parts are then rigorously tested and checked.?These parts are then checked in our inspection department against customer requirements.
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