CNC plastic machining is accomplished through the use of the most up-to-date computer numerical control techniques. Because of this, the milling machines used to machine a block of material into a part are automated and controlled by a computer. The absence of a mold lowers the cost and time of production while also allowing for the production of identical parts from the appropriate material. As a result, it has become the method of choice for unit productions, such as visual and functional tests.

CNC machining is based on a machining technique that was first developed in the 18th Century and is still in use today. According to historical records, the first 'turning the machine with a metal frame' was invented in 1751, and it was the first in a long series of machines aimed at performing more precise operations mechanically than were previously possible through handcrafted techniques. This marked the beginning of the industrialization process in the United States.

However, it was not until the Cold War that the issue of the development of automation was brought up again. At the time, the company Parsons Works was tasked by the United States Navy with increasing the productivity of its helicopter blade production line. The axes of the machines used to manufacture these blades were then motorized by John T. Parsons. Working with IBM, he investigated the feasibility of controlling these machines through the use of a computer. This was the starting point for the computer-controlled numerically controlled machining method.

In 1952, Richard Kegg, in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), developed the Cincinnati Milacron Hydrotel, which was the world's first CNC titanium milling machine. His first patent for a "Motor Controlled Apparatus for Positioning Machine Tool" was filed in 1958, five years after his first. This marked the beginning of the commercialization of this technology.




Plastic CNC machining is characterized by the fact that the machining function is determined by a program that controls the movements of tools on the block to be machined. During milling, it defines the axis of rotation of the milling cutter, and during turning, it defines the axis of rotation of the component. Fully automated and computer-controlled, the milling machine has three or five axes and can cut a variety of materials.

The 3D file that is entered into the computer specifies the path that the milling cutter will take in order to cut the desired part from the block. In order to accommodate small-scale production, this technique is classified as one of the so-called "subtractive" methods, which are both quick and inexpensive for small batches of one to ten parts.

As a result, because the economies of scale are so small, this technique is not recommended for medium or large series production. Because the parts are identical and made of the appropriate material, it is well suited for small-scale productions of up to ten pieces for visual and functional testing purposes. A variety of finishes are also available. Although the perspective on rapid prototyping has shifted over time, the concept has been in use since the very first punched tape and numerical control systems were introduced. Prior to that, all parts were machined by hand, and even punch tape systems were revolutionary in the way they worked. Nowadays, there are numerous prototyping options to choose from, which vary depending on the material being used, the cost, and the complexity of the CNC parts being produced.

CNC machines are still appealing and extremely useful because of the variety of tools and axes of rotation that are available. With the introduction of 3D printing, these advantages have begun to reveal some of their drawbacks. A 3D printer is capable of producing complex parts, including the internal components of those parts. Because material options may be limited depending on the application, CNC systems continue to be the preferred choice, particularly for prototype development and testing. The traditional machinist's job is rapidly becoming obsolete. The demand for CNC specialists has increased significantly in the twenty-first century. The Institute for Technical Trades, for example, provides education and training to machinists in order to prepare them to work for employers in this field. Jobs are expected to be plentiful in many industries, with some predicting that technology-related jobs, such as operating CNC equipment, will account for 40% of all future open positions.

CNC machining is a popular manufacturing process that is used in a wide variety of industrial applications at the moment. However, how much do you know about the history of the CNC? Have you ever given any thought to the history of computer numerical control machines? What do you think people would have said to machines that were churning out products and tools with little guidance hundreds of years ago?

CNC machining in the present day has improved computerized features as a result of the constant development of the technology. However, it goes much further than that. In this article, we will explore the history of Computer Numerical Control in order to provide answers to all of the questions above. This will be in terms of its inception as well as its evolution through the years.