Tuesday, January 27, 2009

How A Router Is Used For CNC Lettering

How A Router Is Used For CNC Lettering
What is a CNC router? This machine is used to cut wood, plastic or metal and is generally used for routing out letters for signs, etc. Besides routing and signage, these machines can act as engraving machines, so you can get a lot of usage from one machine.

Many small fabricating shops, and even individuals are finding the accuracy and versatility of a CNC router very useful. As used equipment becomes available, more and more will be in demand since the price is lower for used equipment.

But they are still an expensive addition to the home shop, and plans to make your own have now become available in sizes as small as 15X15 to 50X60. The use of the machine would determine the size.

CNC Router
A CNC router allows a worker to create many projects that would be very time consuming and sometimes almost impossible to do otherwise. Cutting a complicated design into wood or even putting inlays into it are difficult for even the most skilled of carpenters, but with a CNC machine, these are done easily and accurately.

This makes CNC routers ideal for furniture making. The software for the machine allows you to design patterns or to do signs, once you know the software, and learning the software is not difficult.

The smaller machines, typically for the home shop worker, only require 120 voltage and can therefore be run on household current. These smaller table top machines only require 1 or 2 HP motors and are within the range of a hobbyist. A large machine can cost upwards of $20,000 while these smaller ones are about $7,000. Used machines are usually half the price of new ones, so for an investment of $3500, a home shop can have a very versatile machine. If someone were interested in making furniture for sale, it would pay for itself in no time.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Introduction to Machining Processes

Machining Process
Machining, by definition, is the process of removing materials from excess and unwanted stock by use of machine tools and converting them into usable parts. Different processes like turning, milling, drilling and grinding are used to remove and modify a metal or a plastic into a machine usable part.Machines have brought a revolution in the industrial world in the last few decades. Earlier, people used to manually extract metals and transform them. But, with the entry of machines in the industry and the invention of first steam engine by James Watt, the whole scenario changed. Today, machines are used in different industries for multiple purposes. The upcoming technology and software have also added to the use of machines. Internet has added to the usefulness especially to machining services and availability of spares via the virtual world.

Machining Process
All the manufacturing industries use variety of machines to meet specific manufacturing requirements and choose the right machining vehicles. Those manufacturing machines comprise of diverse materials like aluminum, steel, stainless steel, copper, polycarbonate, plastic, fiberglass and acrylic among others. To achieve a perfect and finished piece of material, different methods are applied on the piece depending on its final usage. Most commonly used methods for removing and modifying a raw piece are blending, blanking, boring, drawing, polishing, anodizing, grinding, honing, knurling, laser cutting, milling, plasma cutting, reaming, welding, thermoforming, gear cutting, shearing, sawing and the list goes on.. These methods are responsible for providing dimensional accuracy and perfect surface finish to a particular piece of metal.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Cnc software window

CNC Software
The development of computer numeric controlled (CNC) routing, using affordable personal computers has already begun to revolutionise all aspects of the woodworking industry. In so doing it has created new opportunities for large and small businesses as well as for individual craftsmen.

CNC is a technique whereby the movement of a router head is controlled by instructions from a computer. These instructions come from a computer program or list that the user keys into the CNC 860 console or into a computer as ISO standard commands called 'G' codes.As an example, the code G01 X100 Y100, instructs the head to move in a straight line to a point horizontally and vertically 100mm away from its starting position.
The CNC 860 The Trend CNC package is based around the Elu/DeWalt CNC 860 Machining Centre, which has a machining area of 860mm x 860mm x 90mm. These dimensions relate to the three axes, X,Y and Z (width, length and height). Each axis is served by a separate stepper motor, controlling the movement of the routing head. Two head options are offered: a modified portable router or a continuously rated, high cycle motor, that provides improved performance for intensive machining applications.

CNC Software
Programming directly in G-codes through the console can be time consuming. To assist the operator, a PC software application called CNCTalk is included with the machine. This is a basic computer aided design (CAD) application which runs under DOS, the original PC operating system before Windows. It is useful for intermediate applications like cutting out irregular shapes. However, to gain the maximum versatility from the CNC 860,Trend's Open Sign System Software for Windows is the most effective solution.

OSS consists of two separate software applications: OSS Draw which provides the drawing tools to create any shape or sign, and OSS Work which handles all the routing and tooling-related parameters like depth and offset. Graphical simulations are shown for all tool parameters enabling the user to perfect a design before routing any material.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

CNC Machining - Thinking of Taking it in House?

First of all what exactly is CNC machining? It stands for computerized numerical control. But what CNC machining really means is perfection. It’s all about producing top quality parts on prototypes and low volume production runs at low costs and being as close to the original design as possible. Being an expert at the intricacy of the technology and capabilities is critical to achieving this goal. And we’re talking about 1 ten thousands of an inch here. The mind set for businesses that do their own CNC machining or are considering taking their current CNC machining in house, has to be perfection.

CNC Machining
With low volume prototype production of 1 to 1,000 parts, CAM (computer aided manufacturing) programs must be used to truly optimize the CNC machining process. Applying best practices throughout, from design to manufacture, should drive the machined parts to your exact designs.
Keeping material scrappage as low as possible, will also help in keeping your costs down. In addition, working with skilled and experienced staff can play a major role in CNC machining that’s done properly. In that there is still an “art” side of CNC machining that needs experienced eyes to see and make immediate corrections and adaptations.

Quality control is a very important aspect of CNC machining. Every machining operation and part needs to have a process for inspection to ensure compliance to your specifications and designs. Completed products need to be evaluated and documented as proof positive that they meet your standards.

The critical thing here for businesses that are considering taking their CNC machining in house is that they should take their time to adequately plan and prepare. They should have a process and system for their prototypes. One or two mistakes will often eliminate any savings, and often raise the costs substantially than if they where to just to outsource the project in the first place.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

CNC Machining - Four Tips to Cut Costs

CNC Machining - Four Tips to Cut Costs
CNC machining nowadays has become extremely competitive because of the sprawl of CNC machine shops in every major city and region. Not only that, even from a global stand point CNC machine shops abound in every country in the world, some of whom have very low labor rates. Hence every possible opportunity to cut costs in your CNC machining operations has to be considered seriously in order to offset the advantage of very low labor rates available in certain parts of the world. This article lists four such areas that the CNC machine shop owner, manager or foreman can look into in order to reduce costs and thereby increase the bottom line profitability of the machining business.

CNC Machining
The first area to address is the raw materials cost. If the same material or family of materials is being machined, then purchasing the materials in bulk or placing a blanket order with scheduled releases can go a long way in reducing costs. This technique is currently employed by many companies quite successfully. There is another way to reduce material costs. That is by purchasing material drops from your raw material vendor. Raw material companies supply several customers with cut to length material from full length bars and what is left over is usually heavily discounted. These materials meet all of the metallurgical specifications except since their lengths can vary quite significantly, they sell these at a very low price which could mean bargains for you. The second area to address to reduce costs is tooling. CNC tooling can get to be quite expensive. Purchase carbide inserts in bulk if possible or place blanket orders with monthly or biweekly or bimonthly releases. This will allow for taking advantage of volume discounts. Drills should be resharpened instead of being thrown away after use on a single job. This may sound too simple, but there are thousands of operators doing exactly the same thing by not resharpening drills. Another place where you can get cheap CNC tooling is from auction houses including on line auctioneers.

CNC Machine Popular Posts