Metal machining includes actions for processing certain type of material (usually metal) during many industrial manufacturing processes. The processing of the material is done with several actions such as cutting the material to desired size and shape. This is done with the use of specific machine tools. Metal machining is an indispensable process during the manufacturing of various metal products. Although this process is most commonly applied to metal, it is also used for other materials such as plastic, ceramic, wood and composites.
The machines that are most commonly used range from mills, lathes to a wide variety of cutting machines. One characteristic of the different machines used during the modern metal machining is the fact that their movement and operation is controlled by computers which use CNC (computer numerical control), a method that is of crucial importance for achieving precise results.
Types Of Metal Machining Operations
The most commonly performed and one of the most important machining operations are:
- Turning – This operation is performed on a material which is rotating while a tool is removing material from it. The main purpose of turning operations is receiving cylindrical shape of the material being processed.
- Drilling – It’s an operation during which a rotating tool is used for making a round hole on the surface of the material. The rotating that is used (usually drill bit) has two cutting edges that have the main function of making the round hole.
- Milling – There are two types of milling: peripheral and face milling. Although performed with different method and tools, the main purpose of both forms of milling operations have one main purpose – to create plain and straight surface.
Why Is Metal Machining Important
- Is suitable for processing wide variety of materials;
- Enables creating wide range of geometric shapes such as accurate round holes, screw threads, straight edges, as well as surfaces;
- Provides very good dimensional accuracy and plane and straight surface finish;
- Metal machining enables high precision during the creation of the desired final shape, dimension, size and surface finish.
- This procedure provides results with geometric specifications which cannot be created by other processes.
- This type of machining can be used in many manufacturing processes during operations such as casting, bar drawing and forging.