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Of SMFR’s various CNC services, CNC turning is frequently requested for a certain category of parts. Turning is a CNC machining process in which the workpiece is rotated at speed in a chuck. Unlike with CNC milling, the cutting tool does not spin.
Turning can be carried out on metals like aluminum, magnesium, steel, stainless steel, brass, copper, bronze, titanium and nickel alloy, as well as plastics like nylon, polycarbonate, ABS, POM, PP, PMMA, PTFE, PEI, PEEK. CNC turning machines are also known as lathe machines.
CNC turning is a particular form of precision machining in which a cutter removes material by making contact with the spinning workpiece. The movement of the machinery is controlled by computer instructions, allowing for extreme precision and repeatability.
Turning is different to CNC milling, in which the cutting tool rotates and is directed from multiple angles at the workpiece, which is usually stationary. Because CNC turning involves rotating the workpiece in a chuck, it is generally used to create round or tubular shapes, achieving far more accurate rounded surfaces than would be possible with CNC milling or other processes.
The tooling that is used with a CNC lathe machine is mounted to a turret. This component is programmed to make certain movements and remove material from raw materials until the desired 3D model is formed.
Like CNC milling, CNC turning can be used for the rapid manufacture of either prototypes or end-use parts.
Aluminum machining is a key part of 3ERP’s services catalog, but CNC turning can also be used to process metals like magnesium, steel, stainless steel, brass, copper, bronze, titanium and nickel alloy.
CNC turning is commonly used for mechanical and aspect components, which are often made from aluminum, the most machinable metal. Aluminum parts can be made with high strength and accuracy, as well as a superior surface finish.
While precision machining is typically used for metals, 3ERP can also provide CNC turning services for plastic parts. Materials available for CNC turning include nylon, polycarbonate, ABS, POM, PP, PMMA, PTFE, PEI, PEEK, providing more accurate parts than 3D printing.