Friday, October 30, 2015

The CNC Family (part 1 of 2)

You might have not heard of the CNC before, or what it does, or how it makes lofty manufacturing operations a lot easier. However, CNC machining is dubbed as one of the most important factors of most production processes. The common tasks CNCs machines usually perform are drilling holes, tool changing, cooling and lubrication of separate factory machines at the same time.

Let’s start with a brief introduction. CNC stands for Computer Numerical Control and it has been around since the early 1970’s. Before it was christened CNC, it was called NC, for Numerical Control. When computers were introduced during 1070’s, the name changed. It has stroked almost all manufacturing forms in almost all stages of production. CNC machines either substitute some existing manufacturing processes or combine work with them.

A CNC program is just any other set of instructions. It’s written like a sentence and the order of operation is chronological. The machine will then execute that set of instructions step-by-step. A special series of CNC words/codes are used to relay what the machine is supposed to do. CNC codes begin with letter addresses (like S for spindle speed, and X, Y & Z for common linear axis motions).

When certain codes are arranged together in a coherent method, this group of CNC codes create a “command” that is like a sentence. A common CNC machine will only be needing around 40-50 words/codes to program different commands. See, it’s not very difficult to learn.

Although CNC sounds very independent and do-it-all, there are a few words that you need to know to fully understand CNC operations.

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