What is CNC Machining: 2021 Best Guide for Beginners

Description: CNC machining is a complex process. This requires an adequate knowledge and skills. Our guide includes all necessary details for a beginner cnc machine operator.


What is CNC Machining: 2021 Best Guide for Beginners

What is CNC Machining

What is meant by a CNC machine?

CNC stands for Computer Numerical Control. Therefore, computer Numerical Control machining is the automatic command of machining devices with the help of a computer. In recent Computer Numerical Control systems, the blueprint of a mechanical segment and its making plan is automatic.

What is CNC machining and how does it work?

This pre-planned computer program manages the working of plant tools and devices. Hence, the method can be utilized to command a run of complex apparatus, from processors and machines to plants and switches. With Computer Numerical Control machining, 3D cutting assignments can be done in one layer of prompts.

When a Computer Numerical Control system is initiated, the required cuts are planned into a program and managed to corresponding devices and equipment. Which conduct the dimensional assignments as indicated, almost as a robot. Therefore, it can manufacture the required parts according to the instructions of computer.

Control of CNC machining

In Computer Numerical System planning, the code creator inside the numerical framework will frequently accept mechanism are immaculate. Despite the plausibility of the mistakes, which is more notable at a point when a CNC machine has been used to carve in numerous courses at the same time. The instructions for this are present in the software.

However, with a CNC machine, plans give input through punch cards. On contrary, the plans for Computer Network Control machines nourish computers even though little consoles. CNC planning is present in a computer software memory. It can order the respective activity according the design of particular part.

What is a CNC machine used for?

Computer Numerical Control machining is an operation having use in the developing centers that demand the use of computers to command machine devices. It may be a lathe, grinder, router, welder, robot, sheet metal stamping machine, or many other types.

What are CNC machines and their types?

The early machines of the 1940s utilize motors to command the motion of pre-existing devices. With the advancement of technology, the components upgrade with an analog computer and eventually with advanced computers. Which drives the arise of Computer Numerical Control machining.

What is CNC Machining
A large part of today’s Computer Numerical Control stores is electronic. Some of which incorporate laser cutting, ultra-sonic welding, and hole-punching. The foremost regularly utilized machines in Computer Numerical Control frameworks incorporate the following:

What is CNC Machining

CNC Mills: Computer Numerical Control

Plants are able of running on commands including letter and number-based causes. Which direct pieces over different separations. Therefore, the planning utilized for a mill machine might be on the base of either G-code or the same special language made by the developing group. Essential mills comprise a three-axis framework; even though most more current plants can oblige three extra axes.

Plasma cutters:

In this, the fabric is carved with the help of a plasma burn. This method is mostly connected with metal materials but it can be utilized on further surfaces. In sequence to deliver the speed and warmth vital to cut fabric, plasma is produced with the help of electric circular segments and compressed air.


In lathe machines, segments are carving in around course with indexable devices.  With Computer Numerical Control innovation, the carves utilized by lathes accomplish exactness and good speed.

Computer Numerical Lathes are utilizing to create complex blueprints that wouldn’t be conveyable on physical run forms of the machine. In general, the Computer Numerical Control run machines and lathes are comparative.

Water Jet Cutters:

In Computer Numerical Control machining, the water planes are devices that carve difficult materials, like rock and metal. With the help of intense water pressure utilization. In a few cases, water blends with sand or few other solid grating substances. Plant machine segments mold with this method.

Electric Discharge Machining:

EDM on the other hand alluded to as pass-on spark machining and skinning machining. EDM is a method that shapes work segments into specific molds with electrical sparkles. With Electric Discharge Machining current release happens in two cathodes and this expels areas of a specified work part.
When the distance between the electrodes gets to be littler, the electric field gets to be more strongly. In this way, it is stronger than dielectric. Due to this, it is easy for the current to pass between both terminals. Subsequently, workpiece segments are facing expulsion by every terminal. Subtypes of Electric Discharge Machining are sinker EDM and wire EDM.

Here is an example of numerical control machines: CNC milling machines

One application of CNC machines is milling: CNC milling machines remove excess material from the workpiece with great precision.

CNC milling machines can have up to 5 axes, each of which corresponds to a degree of freedom of the machine. The first 3 axes represent the movement in the three dimensions, while the last two are indicative of the rotation of the workpiece or of the milling machine.

Software for CNC machines

Software for CNC machines

How are the movements of a CNC milling machine controlled?

CAD programs and CAM programs are used to control numerical control machines.

Computer Aided Design (CAD) programs are used to make technical drawings directly on the computer. Once you have created the model you want to make, the CAM programs analyze it and transform it into a series of instructions for the CNC machine, which, when executed in sequence, shape the raw material.


CNC machines allow you to control the entire machining process directly remotely, via computer. This monitoring method guarantees significant advantages in the production phases:

  • punctuality;
  • speed;
  • high accuracy;
  • repeatability;
  • adaptability;
  • flexibility;

Thanks to all these facilities, the works carried out with CNC machines allow us to always offer optimal results in the prototyping of metal parts.


What mainly distinguishes the numerically controlled machines from each other is the number of axes available, classified as X, Y and Z. These axes regulate the inclination and movement of the tool with respect to the work plane and respectively represent width, height and depth.

2 axes : linear movement on X and Y, without depth variation.

3 axes: total movement on the X, Y and Z axis. The tool then moves in height, width and depth.

4 axes: the rotation of the tool or the workpiece is added to the movement of height, width and depth. Depending on the type of machine, this rotation may not necessarily occur simultaneously with the other 3 axes.



These machines have two additional motion axes in addition to the classic linear X, Y and Z rotation axes. These axes are called A and B. Linear and rotary movement occur simultaneously and the first concerns the tool, the second affects the spindle.

The advantage of rotation compared to a normal movement in height, width and depth, concerns the possibility of working the panel from any direction: the spindle by tilting and rotating, allows the tool to drill or cut complex shapes, with greater fluidity and precision.


The CNC employee takes care of inserting the instructions into the machine according to the technical sheet that is provided, of taking care of the initial setting of the tools, inserting the reference points. After starting the processing, he supervises the process and intervenes in case modifications or improvements are needed.

Once the machinery has finished the operations, the CNC worker removes the piece from the machining area, makes sure that the component has dimensions that fall within the tolerance limits indicated in the project, performs a quality check on the piece and delivers it for the subsequent processing phase.

Notify the production manager of any manufacturing defects. The CNC employee therefore makes sure that the CNC machines work at full capacity and that the finished product meets the set quality standards.

Is CNC easy to learn?

Exceptionally essential Computer Numerical Control programming is simple to memorize. However, if you can merely get to the essential math and have a get handle on how it works. Halfway programming abilities can be learned almost in a year. But progressed Computer Numerical Control Programming may take a long time to learn.

Particularly, it takes a long time of combined education almost 4 to 5 years. And on-the-job training as well to end up completely prepared.

Which software is best for CNC programming?

CNC machining helps to create a plan to run a machine device. Therefore, every part of the machine device needs its own Computer Numerical Control program. Here is the name of some best software to run CNC machining.

  1. Unigraphics (UG NX)
  2. Power Mill
  3. Mastercam
  4. HSM Works
  5. Edgecam

What is CNC Machining

What is the process of CNC machining?

This pre-planned computer program manages the working of plant tools and devices. The method has utilization to command a run of complex apparatus, from processors and machines to plants and switches. With Computer Numerical Control machining, 3D cutting assignments can be done in one layer of prompts.

In brief, Computer Numerical Control programming is a metal creation process where composed code commands the machinery within the fabricating handle. Hence, the code decides each thing from the development of the carving head and the portion to axle speed, RPMs, etc. Computer Numerical Control machining administrations utilize a subtractive manufacturing strategy.

What are the disadvantages of CNC machines?

The disadvantages of the Computer Numerical Control machine are as follow:

  • Cost: Computer Numerical Control machines are a bit costly and require a more prominent introductory venture than machines that can work physically. In any case, as this innovation gets to be standard, supply is expanding coming about in costs continuously diminishing.
  • Skill loss: As the request for physical machine administrators diminishes less and upcoming students embrace those aptitudes. This may inevitably lead to the total misfortune of the long-preserved aptitudes.
  • Unemployment: Robotization diminishes the requirement for labor, and fewer laborers contract. The educational institutions and training instructors will alter to meet that requirement.

What can a 3 axis CNC machine can do?

The number of axes on Computer Numerical Control machines decides the sort of work it will be able to perform. Moreover, it also decides the level of detail of carving and the workpiece areas it can command.

Three-axis machining infers that the workpiece is in the same position; whereas, the carving device works along the XYZ plane to cut down the fabric. Therefore, this can be reasonable for segments that don’t need a parcel of profundity and enumerating. Three-axis machining has generally utilization to create mechanical components like:

  • Drilling holes
  • Cutting sharp edges
  • Milling slots
  • Automatic operation

 CNC machining: the materials used

The process seems complex, but in reality once understood it will increase productivity and therefore revenue. The machines that are used for this type of production are very popular in industrial processing: this is due to the fact that they are ideal for processing many materials, such as CNC machining in stainless steel or CNC machining in aluminum.

It starts from a block of raw material and, thanks to a cutter or a lathe; material is removed until the finished product is obtained.

CNC precision mechanics: which are the most frequent processes

The precision mechanics is that specific branch of mechanics that deals with the processing of small mechanical components and which is, for this reason, application in many industrial sectors.

Most of the precision mechanical processing is now carried out thanks to computerized machines, better known as CNC machines (Computer Numerical Control), or numerically controlled machines: these are machines controlled by computerized software that allows you to program the processing ensuring at the same time a high level of precision, which reaches up to one thousandth of a millimeter.

By now this type of machines are widely used in all sectors and cover most of the main precision mechanics processes.

CNC drilling

Drilling is a type of processing that allows, as the name suggests, to drill holes inside different materials, from wood to metals. The CNC drilling machines in particular work thanks to a software that can be programmed in order to establish the rotation speed of the drilling tip, the depth of the hole and other details that make the machining extremely precise.

CNC milling

Milling is one of the most widespread processes in the field of precision mechanics . A cutter can have from one to 5 axes, and depending on the number of axes it allows to create objects and components with more or less complex shapes: the cutters are in fact able to model any material, removing excess material from a compact block thanks to the rotation of the axes at high revolutions.

CNC turning

Unlike drilling, turning uses the reverse principle: it is in fact the material to be processed that is rotated around the lathe, which remains fixed. In this way it is possible to obtain cylindrical and concave objects, always guaranteeing, thanks to computerized programming, a high level of precision.

CNC machining: what is galvanizing

In CNC machining , zinc plating is the process by which a zinc coating is applied to a metal object to protect it from galvanic corrosion. Generally it covers the steel: being electronegative and therefore less noble than steel, it carries out a protection by electrochemical action also called cathodic protection. In addition, it forms a barrier that isolates the steel from atmospheric agents.

Numerical control machines are not used in CNC machining for this procedure, but proceed in the traditional way. Various forms of galvanizing can be distinguished:

  • hot
  • hot continues
  • electrolytic
  • cold
  • spray

In the first case, one proceeds by immersing the sheets or the manufactured articles to be treated in tanks containing molten zinc at a temperature of about 450 ° C. The continuous hot one is like the previous one, but is carried out on steel strips or wires that allow managing many pieces.

Electrolytic zinc plating is achieved by immersing the material in an electrolytic solution that contains zinc salts. Finally, a current passage is created which causes the metallic zinc to deposit on the surface of the piece.

The cold one is not a galvanization in the strict sense of the term, but is more similar to a primer painting, while the spray one foresees that the molten zinc, finely pulverized, is sprayed on the surface of the steel, previously sandblasted to white metal.

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