As defined by Wikipedia, CNC is a computer numerical control developed for machining. It processes a piece of material by adhering to a coded, programmed instruction without a manual operator.
Apparently, a programmed production line is not new. However, the principle of CNC is quite old since there were no fundamental changes from 1804. It was only more than a hundred years later when John Parsons came up with automating the production of aircraft propellers through metal coding on punch cards.
The majority did not accept the invented machine at first. Still, after World War II, Parson’s patent fascinated several companies, like Fujitsu, General Electric, and IBM. After that, automation was in the air. Now, CNC machines are the striker of the 20th century’s scientific and technological revolution.
So how CNC robotics becomes the new step of worldwide automation? Let’s find out.
How CNC Revolutionized Our World?
Here are a few aspects that made CNC machines known.
CNCs are Faster Than Ever
Nowadays, you do not have to wait for months to get the necessary part to fix your broken car. Thanks to the CNC machine, the piece can be made in a couple of hours, depending on its complexity. This is because top CNC machine manufacturers are constantly improving their equipment. They always ensure to level up the speed and effectiveness of their products when reconstructing CNC machines.
CNCs are More Reliable
In the past, a master had to spend several years training how to create two products that are at least identical. Then, he had to devote more time teaching this skill to his apprentices. But now, with CNC machines, the mass production of hundred copies is no longer a problem. More than that, you can be assured about the products’ precision in the manufacturing process.
CNCs Made Products More Affordable
Let’s talk about economics, particularly the pricing policy. If supply is equal or greater than demand, what do you think is the underlying effect? Indeed, the product price decreases. So, thanks to CNC machines, millions of products are more affordable. This made the handcrafted products nowadays a sign of elitism, like a Lamborghini Veneno or Plain English’s and Bilotta’s kitchen cabinets.
CNCs Made Things Easier and Safer
Like cutting and welding, working with metals is always associated with high risks (bad hearing, failing eyesight, injuries, and burns). Remember, you can fix and repair the CNC machine, but not a man. With CNCs, the dangers towards human workers are reduced because these pieces of machinery are equipped with a soundproof casing, emergency stop button, curtain guard, and guard fence.
Types of CNC Equipment by Function
There are many different types of CNC machines and each of which has its unique function.
Milling is one of CNC machines’ most common function types as it features built-in tools for cutting and drilling. To use, an operator prepares and loads raw materials into the machine. Then the CNC adheres to the selected program and cuts any material accurately, considering the direction, angle, and depth.
What’s more, you can use a CNC robotic arm to replace an operator in a CNC milling machine. Getting one for your CNC machine is a good investment because it is safer to use and has excellent speed, consistency, and accuracy. Check out CNC robotic arm prices in the market to know your available options.
The plasma cutting CNC machine is also used to cut material. However, it differs from its milling counterparts since it uses a gas supply or plasma torch tool. This machine is high-speed and accurate as it slices metal up to 500 inches per minute, but the biggest concern here is safety. Fortunately, the workers’ safety is guaranteed by replacing them with a robotic arm.
A CNC plasma cutter machine needs enough buffer space for sparks, a sound ventilation system, flame-resistant floors, and a strict safety policy for operators.
Laser cutting CNC machines should not be confused with plasma cutting CNC machines since the former is designed to cut rigid materials using a laser instead of a plasma torch.
Lasers tend to provide a higher degree of cutting accuracy, but they are not pretty strong as plasma torches.
Grinding is one of the refining operations used in modern industry. CNC grinding machines use a rotary wheel to abrade the raw material into an arranged shape.
Lathing resembles the grinding process. However, the former rotates the material against the abrading device. CNC lathe machines are used primarily to manufacture symmetrical cylindrical objects made of plastic, wood, or stainless steel. They usually have fewer axes than milling machines, making them smaller and more compact.
In drilling, the CNC machine spins and moves the drill towards an anchored part. The biggest challenge and time-waster here is positioning the fixed piece and changing the drill.
You can delegate one of the most hazardous tasks on the production floor to a CNC machine. However, the operator can still face potential dangers, like fire, fumes, and explosions. Good thing you can use a CNC robot arm for a welding machine to allow you to reduce risks, labor costs, achieve long-lasting results and gain more profit.
CNC machines have allowed the industry to be more independent and effective. But, more than that, you can load a CNC robot arm to these machines to manage the whole process. So keep in mind that you maximize all the benefits of your CNC machine when using an automated robotic operator.