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What Can CNC Machines Make? Find Out if a CNC Manufacturer Can Meet Your Application’s Needs

Combining the power of technology with precision machinery, CNC machines are capable of producing a variety of precision metal parts across industries. Following computer instructions instead of manual handling, CNC machines can achieve the exact feed rate, speed, and coordination needed to create even the most intricate or irregularly-shaped parts with precision. Learn more about CNC machining and find out what CNC machines can make below.

Need to find out if our CNC machining services can fulfill your application? Connect with an expert.

What Is CNC Machining?

CNC, which stands for Computerized Numerical Control, uses pre-programmed software to guide production equipment. Tools like mills and lathes can be programmed to precisely create complex parts that would be near impossible to accomplish manually.

CNC machinists input instructions from computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) and computer-aided design (CAD) technical drawings in a programming language named G-code, which then controls the speed and direction of the machinery. They set up, monitor, and manage the CNC production process, test the quality and accuracy of final components, and continuously improve the CNC machining process.

The benefits of CNC machining include diverse capabilities for producing both small and large parts, added efficiency, and reduction of human error. Making technical changes to a part is also easier with CNC machining, as it involves a change in coding as opposed to changing the process of how a material is manually cut or shaped.

What Can CNC Machines Make?

CNC machines are used across a variety of industries to make several complex metal parts. Their known efficiency, customizability, and vast capabilities for creating components of different sizes and levels of intricacy. Discover what CNC machines can make for each individual industry.

Aerospace Components

With safety being of the utmost importance in the aerospace manufacturing industry, the exacting precision of CNC machining versus more manual methods is a major advantage. CNC machines are able to produce the lightweight but strong parts needed for aerospace applications with incredibly tight tolerances.

So which aerospace components are made by CNC machines? Everything from components for a plane’s wings to the intricate parts of a plane’s navigation system in the cockpit may be machined. Specifically, CNC machines are often used to produce hydraulic manifolds, transmissions, fuel bodies, landing gear, electrical connectors, housings, bushings, hinges, clamps, and many other custom parts.

Most machined aerospace parts are made of durable but light materials like Titanium or Kovar. Aluminum, stainless steel, copper, and bronze are other popular machining materials used in kits, components, and assemblies for the aerospace industry.

Automotive Components

Like the aerospace industry, precision machined components contribute to enhanced safety in finished vehicles. The computerized element of CNC machining makes production times often faster and more efficient, and repeatability easy over long periods of time, both of which are especially important in the fast-moving automotive industry.

CNC machining is often used in the automotive industry to create critical, intricate components like engine parts, due to its ability to achieve tight tolerances and repeat exact functions precisely. Similar to the aerospace parts described above, CNC machining excels at creating multiple components throughout a vehicle. These can include both standard and highly specialized parts like dashboard panels, starter motors, drive axles, gearboxes, engine blocks, cylinder heads, alternator housings, brake system valves, and fuel pump systems.

Transportation Industry Parts

For railroads, trucks, shipping vessels, and more, CNC machining is also a vital process. The pace and accuracy of CNC machines combine to create major competitive advantages across highly complex applications.

A sampling of the parts that CNC machines make for the transportation industry include shafts, valve retainers, engine blocks, pistons, timing covers, bushings, secondary machining operations on castings, transmission casings, gears, braking systems, and more. For railways specifically, bogies, relays for signaling systems, train wheels, rail fixings, suspension parts (springs and fixings), specialist bolts and more are also frequently CNC machined.

Medical Tooling

CNC machining has several critical medical applications, ranging from parts in essential equipment to surgical tools and even some types of bodily implants. Specialized stainless steels allow for the necessary precision and cleanliness needed in the medical field, as they are easily able to be sterilized.

Surgical tools that are created by CNC machining include surgical scissors, scalpels, biopsy tools, clamps, cutters, saws, forceps, blade handles, implant holders, spacers, and more. Machined parts also play arole in several larger important medical devices, including ultrasound machines, MRI or CT scanners, monitors, lighting, and diagnostic equipment.

Oil & Gas

Parts for pipelines, refineries, and rigs require a high level of sophistication and accuracy to ensure durable, effective use. Aztalan helps customers in this industry refine plans and enhance production for the highest performing custom components and equipment.

Bushings, connectors, fasteners, pins, shafts, spacers, springs, and washers are all CNC machined parts that demand enhanced precision for the oil and gas industries. Components for actuating systems, hydraulic purposes, pump systems, sealing systems, vacuum barriers, and valves are other uses of CNC machining for these industries.

Critical Components for the Military & Defense Industries

Confidentiality is as important as the capability to meet tight tolerances for essential military and defense equipment and weapons. A machine shop with versatile capabilities and experience creating military-grade products will be able to provide military and defense organizations with the high-performing components needed for military vehicles, aircraft, firearms, and more.

Military-grade machined components often include adapters, ammunition, bases, bushings, connectors, couplings, fittings, hinge pins, housings, jam nuts, pistons, spit-backs, shafts, spacers, and striker points. Components for radios and satellites, electrical pieces, missiles, and other weapons also require the intricacy, exactness, and efficient production afforded by the CNC machining process.

How Aztalan Can Help With Any Application

For any industry, Aztalan’s decades of experience, vast facility housing state-of-the-art machinery, and skilled employee-owners deliver on precision machined components and equipment. Our talented and dynamic team takes an approach to machining that emphasizes quality craftsmanship, innovative problem-solving, and superior service.

Reach out to one of our experts today to discuss how Aztalan Engineering’s CNC machining services can meet your needs.

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