CNC (Computer Numerical Control) machining is a subtractive manufacturing process that uses computerized machine tools to make a custom-designed part. A computer uses programming codes to direct machine tools to chip at (subtract) a material. This is until the material forms the input designed part.
In order to further grab the basics of CNC machining, it is crucial to know how CNC machining works. From the definition, CNC machining is a subtractive and computerized process. Therefore, knowing how it works comes from understanding the relationship between the computer, the required operations, and the workpiece.
Based on this relationship, CNC machining’s mechanism can be divided into four different stages:
Create A CAD Design
Creating a Computer-Aided Design either in 2D or 3D format is the first thing to do. You can achieve this by using CAD software. With the software, you can render any parts you want with the right technical specifications. However, there is a little limitation. The workpiece’s properties have a huge role to play in the design and how it turns out.
Convert the CAD File to A CNC Program
The next step is converting the CAD file to a CNC-compatible file format. The CNC program will analyze the CAD file to generate programming codes needed for the process. There are two types of code you should be familiar with in CNC machining basics. These are the G-code (Geometric Code) and M-code (Machine code). G-code controls the machine’s actions. For example, it controls how it moves, when it moves, how fast it moves, the path it takes, etc. On the other hand, the M-code controls the factors that surround the machine’s capabilities. For example, it controls the removal and replacement of the machine cover.
Set Up the CNC Machine
Setting up the CNC machine is in two ways. One is that you must run a check on the CNC machine to ascertain its condition. The second thing is fixing the workpiece on the machine. You can fix the workpiece directly into the machine while you attach the required tools and components.
Execute the Operation
After setting up the CNC machine, you can then run the CNC program. The CNC program is the control center for all the actions of the CNC machine. It commands the machine by dictating its actions and movements towards getting the right result.