Maroney Company | Precision and Electrical Discharge Machining

Precision Machining: Everything You Need To Know

Ever wonder how machinists make those heavy aluminum tools and engine parts? They definitely don’t make them with their hands or melt them in a furnace. They make these parts using a process called precision machining.  Precision is a crucial aspect of high-quality machining. It is the key to delivering precise products with tight tolerances and desirable surface finishes.

Nearly every industry relies on CNC precision machining to create quality custom machined parts that meet requirements.  Is precision machining a lost art? Not at Maroney Company. Precision machining remains an essential service used in the creation of parts, components of many tools and items we use and depend on in everyday life. 

In fact, precision machining supports technology where visionary companies are supporting advanced efficiency in older technology and also creating hardware supporting the latest developments in technology. But what exactly is precision machining?  For those new to the world of manufacturing, precision machining is a manufacturing process that relies on the use of computer software to create any product to exact specifications. 


What is precision machining?

Precision machining is a type of technical manufacturing that is essential for creating and designing machines, parts, tooling, and other equipment that are essential in modern manufacturing to maintain process controls and tolerances that operate under extremely tight specifications.

It is the process in which raw material is removed from an object to create a smaller finished product using cutting machines, software applications, and human engineering to meet very demanding specifications.  It is used to create parts and components for almost every industry and application. This includes aerospace and other very complex industries that need machining work on large parts. In general, CNC machining refers to one of many reduction processes that remove material from a workpiece to meet a design.

These processes use computerized controls to manage the entire machining process from start to finish, ultimately producing consistently accurate parts.  CNC machining equipment can follow the same sets of instructions over and over again to facilitate small or large production runs of identical parts.  


Who does this process?

A company that offers precision contract machining services can typically assist with small modifications during the prototyping process to meet design and/or industry standards. This process is especially advantageous because of its automated functionality. Automation allows machines to operate self-sufficiently, requiring less human labor to produce precise parts.

The growing shortage of machinists and skilled workers in the industry has been one of the main factors contributing to the advancement of CNC technology in recent years. Simply put, precision machining can be defined as utilizing the highest function of a tool, program, engineering talent, or equipment, thus pushing the limits of design feature creation and material science and performing these operations under the tightest tolerances defined by any subset of these manufacturing parameters. 

This process is now an essential part of the manufacturing industry as it often involves collaboration between expert designers and professional engineers. This is necessary to utilize the advanced tooling available to create intricate parts with complex geometries.   


Types of Precision Machining Equipment

Because of the different processes involved in precision machining, different pieces of equipment are required to make it work. In some cases, these tools are placed on a single machine, and the machinist only has to start and stop the process. In other situations, the tools have to be placed on different machines, and the machinist will have to move the workpiece/blank material from one machine to another. Some precision machines used are: 

CNC Milling Equipment.

Milling is the precision machining process that involves the use of rotary milling cutters to remove excess material from a workpiece. It involves various types of milling cutters. Examples of these milling cutters include end mills, chamfer milling cutters and helical milling cutters.  CNC milling machines also include manual milling machines, flat milling machines, omniversal milling machines and universal milling machines. These machines are either horizontally or vertically oriented.

CNC Turning Equipment

Turning is a precision machining process that involves the rotation of the workpiece along with a single-point rotating cutting tool. The most popular tools used for lathe turning processes are lathes, such as turret lathes, engine lathes and engine purpose lathes. Other turning equipment includes straight turning, taper turning, external grooving and threading.

CNC Drilling Equipment

Drilling is a precise machining process that uses multi-point rotary drills to create cylindrical holes in raw materials/workpieces. In addition, the design of the drills allows chips from the workpiece to fall out of the workpiece, which keeps the drilled holes clean.  Turning is another precision machining process that involves rotating the workpiece together with a cutting tool. The cutting tool is usually a single-point rotating machine. CNC lathes are the most common tools for CNC turning processes. Examples of these lathes are engine lathes, engine lathes, and turret lathes. Other equipments used for turning are taper and straight turning tools, threading, and external grooving.

CNC Drilling Machine

Some examples of common drills used in CNC machining processes are tapping drills (for making shallow or pilot holes), pecking drills (to reduce the number of chips in the workpiece), screw machine drills (to produce holes without a pilot hole), and reamer chucks (to enlarge previously produced holes). There are also drills, which are bits manufactured for a specific drilling task. Drilling involves using rotary drills to create cylindrical holes in workpieces. Drills are multipoint tools to ensure precise machining. Their designs also ensure that the chips from the raw material will be removed from the raw material. In this way, you can be sure that the drilled holes are clean.

CNC Electrical Discharge Mining Equipment

Electrical discharge mining is a precise machining process that uses electrical discharges (sparks) to obtain the final product. The setup consists of the tool electrode (tool) and workpiece electrode (workpiece) separated by a dielectric fluid and subjected to an electrical voltage.

The process is also known as spark machining, spark erosion, flaring, die sinking or wire erosion. Electrical discharge machining (EDM) uses sparks of electricity in a precision machining process to obtain the desired product. The wire EDM setup includes the tool electrode and the workpiece electrode. A dielectric fluid separates these electrodes and subjects them to an electrical voltage. Some machinists refer to the process as spark machining, die sinking, wire erosion, or spark erosion. It is very effective for creating intricate parts for different applications.

The optimal type of CNC machine you choose for your project will depend on the complexity and shape of the part, as well as the material. A cylindrical part, for example, is a good candidate for a CNC lathe because the cutting tool will make contact with the rotating part. On the other hand, 5-axis CNC machining is better for more complex parts with different geometries.  


Advantages of high precision CNC machining 

Some of the advantages of using these high precision machines for your manufacturing process are: 

Reduced production cost.

In terms of price, CNC machining is the way to go, especially if you are looking to make a couple hundred parts. The process requires a lower initial cost compared to the cost of injection molding (due to the expense of creating the mold).  CNC machining facilities can produce parts 24 hours a day. The machines can run continuously with little or no human intervention. The machines also require less space than workstations or manual machining setups, so a facility with a given footprint can have more machines running simultaneously.

Enables rapid and cost-effective prototyping

With CNC machining services, prototype production is even more efficient. This is because CNC can work with many cost-effective materials, so you don’t have to spend a lot on prototypes. Of course, when prototypes are produced more quickly, the entire production process speeds up even more. At RapidDirect, we deliver prototypes that meet manufacturing requirements and quality standards. CNC machines provide higher speed compared to injection molding. Unlike injection molding, which can take months to make the mold and ensure parts are within tolerance, CNC machining can produce parts in a matter of weeks. Precision machining services produce components to much higher standards than conventional machining. It is the ideal solution to meet the most stringent requirements and tolerance standards. Some of the advantages are

Increased volume and a wide range of applications

Precision machining services can handle high-volume production requirements. It is perfect for creating prototypes, high-volume production runs, as well as global orders. The flexibility of CNC machining with various materials is also incredible. This process works perfectly with aluminum, iron, stainless steel, steel, brass and many other materials. It is also compatible with plastics of various types. Its ability to also benefit diverse industries ranging from automotive to medical to aerospace to defense makes it invaluable. As a result, your company can compete in custom part manufacturing, regardless of size.

Improved part quality

Precision machining is unparalleled when it comes to part quality. These CNC machines use advanced software that allows design specifications to be met relatively easily, even on complex parts. Extensive testing of components also ensures that they meet and exceed customer expectations. It’s no wonder that precision machining companies boast higher part performance. Many countries also consider it the best solution for their manufacturing applications.  


The company you are looking for in Northridge, CA 

Precision CNC machining is one of the most efficient techniques for manufacturing your custom parts. It offers little margin for error while producing parts that meet tight tolerances and complex specifications. It is a manufacturing process that you should incorporate into your projects. 

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you with your unique production requirements. Our precision CNC machining services are second to none. We guarantee unparalleled technical support and material certification to ensure manufacturability of parts. If you would like to review the list of services we offer, please visit our website.

On top of all that, our prices also stand out from the rest. Priced 30% below the average price you will find anywhere, we at Maroney Company help you save on production costs. We supply you with the highest quality finished parts made with the latest advances in CNC technology.  


Contact us for your Precision Machining requirements

At Maroney Company, we look forward to helping our customers with their requirements pertaining to aerospace tooling and machining. Please give us a call at (818) 882-2722 or contact us to discuss your needs and find custom solutions tailored just for you.