CNC precision Machining is a sophisticated and a specialized method used within the manufacturing sector. Computers are implemented to control the machine parts which give a precise cut. In CNC precision machining the basic equipment are not very different they are regular machining equipment controlled by computers.
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When you buy a CNC lathe there are many questions to need to look upon before you begin the process. Few of them may be very obvious: what size chuck should I go for? How much travel axis do I require? The size of the spindle bore, the number of tool stations o the turret, etc. Moreover there are other specifications which are important but not very obvious like the maximum swing distance that the work will need, the turning diameter for the family of parts, the spindle horse power and torque that the work may consume etc. The former sets of queries are easier to answer but the latter requires an understanding of lathes.
There are numerous highly skilled CNC lathe machinist who can work wonder on the milling machine but they fail to understand the meaning of basic lathe terminologies. In this article I will attempt to clarify the benefits and the meaning of the not so important features that prevail on a lathe spec sheet along with their definitions and explanations why they might be crucial consideration while purchasing CNC lathe machines.
Maximum turning Diameter:
It means the largest size of the part that could be turned on the machine utilizing the standard length tool without any collision or interference of other machine parts. The size of the part that could be turned safely with the x – axis retracted positively. For example: if you are finding a machine with maximum turning diameter of 16 inches and the parts to be run on a daily basis are 15 inches of diameter , which means you would want a machine with maximum turning diameter. In the above example the part would technically fit but if you must be aware that you are running on the very edge of the envelope and that if you want to hang a tool out of the turret than the normal, it is likely that you might not have enough X-axis travel to accommodate the part.
This means the largest diameter part which could be spun in the chuck without any interference with cross glide, guarding or other components of the machine near the area of chuck. This value could be larger than the maximum turning diameter depending upon the design and style of the machine.
Horse power and Torque:
Horse power and torque are one of the necessary considerations while purchasing a CNC lathe but not in all cases. If you are into castings, forgings, drilling large diameter holes in steel then torque and horse power are very important elements and you must be sure that your machine has enough for your application.
Maximum turning Length:
It is as same as the maximum turning diameter. This indicates the longest part that could be turned based on the axis travel and mechanical limitations. For a particular part to have an effective maximum turning length could be less than that specified by the use of large or deep chucks or the tool that hangs out from the turret. In both circumstances there would be a possibility of mechanical interference restricting the length to be machined.