An integral process in modern machining, computer numerical control (CNC) milling is capable of much more than generating small parts. In machining, large parts are considered to be any component with size requirements that exceed standard CNC milling equipment or weights that surpass a single employee’s capability to carry. Projects of this size or weight mean that manufacturers must have specialized equipment to handle production on such a scale, backed by a team of experienced operators.
Technox Machine & Manufacturing Inc. is a one-stop shop for all your fabricating and machining needs. With nearly endless options for part size and weight, our team manufactures large-scale parts at the highest levels of quality and precision, customizing our products to fit any application or industry.
Large Part CNC Milling
CNC milling is a subtractive machining process that relies on computer-controlled tooling and instructions to selectively cut and drill materials away from a larger workpiece, ultimately shaping a custom component. CNC milling machines can rotate tools along multiple axes to mechanically remove material from varying planes of the workpiece.
Large CNC milling machines follow similar steps as those in other CNC machining processes, including:
- Design creation through computer-aided design (CAD) software
- Conversion of CAD files into numerical codes the CNC equipment can digitally read
- Preparation and positioning of the tooling and workpiece
- Automated part generation
Manufacturers can use CNC mills for a wide array of large parts with numerous material options. However, they should select an effective material best suited for the specific end-product. Brass, aluminum, stainless steel, and strong high-temp alloys are ideal metals for the process, as are several plastic options.
CNC milling offers numerous benefits for even large-scale components, including:
- Accuracy. CNC milling machines operate with minimal human intervention, bypassing the possibility of employee error in the manufacturing process. These machines rely on software codes, thus delivering consistent and repeatable precision without flaws. These automated machines can also operate for long hours without compromising the quality or tight tolerances of jobs.
- Speed. The automation of the CNC milling process and the ability for simultaneous cuts allow for faster and more efficient production, as well as increased productivity overall. Machines can operate rapidly to match the demand for products without breaking or tiring.
- Versatility. In addition to the wide array of material choices that this process offers, once the CAD software translates a design into programmed instructions for the CNC mill, the equipment can produce parts for even the most complex of components.
- Safety. CNC mills isolate machines from most human contact, reducing the risks that result from direct interaction between humans and traditional milling machines. Also, modern CNC machines can automatically change tools during processing, which can potentially eliminate the human aspect from the tooling preparation stage. This allows employees to execute software program updates and utilize preventive measures to keep the machines running.
- Cost-effectiveness. When you combine the above benefits, it’s clear that CNC milling machines can significantly cut down on production costs, all while maintaining high levels of quality and performance. For instance, they improve productivity, with higher output in less time than manual or standard operations. CNC milling services also offload financial liabilities and downtime costs incurred through common accidents with machines that rely on human-machine interaction.
At Technox, we can help you mill any large part up to 113″ x 336″ x 84″ with tolerances of ±0.0005″ of the design specifications. We’re also capable of milling all kinds of materials, including copper, cast iron, bronze, aluminum, plastics, and wood. Our three facilities are equipped with state-of-the-art machines such as:
- Planer milling machinery
- 3- and 4-axis CNC vertical milling equipment
- 35 high-capacity forklifts, cranes, and hoisting machines for lifting up to 15 tons
Technox also offers planer milling services. In this process, the mill shapes the outer profile of a component by making linear cuts to achieve grooves and notches. This works differently than CNC milling since the planer mill moves a workpiece back and forth against the tool, whereas CNC mills rotate the cutting tools against the workpiece. Planer milling processes often create end-products such as rings, castings, segments, shafts, and dial plate drums.
Our cutting-edge large CNC machining and planer equipment can handle the manufacture of large parts for a variety of industries. CNC milling services work well in the following industries:
- Automotive and transportation
- Consumer goods
- Military and defense
- Robotics and automation
As for planer milling, the process has applications in the following sectors:
- Bulk conveying
- Food handling
- Packaging machinery
- Oil & pipeline equipment
- Plastic and steel processing
- Printing machinery
Types of Large Milled Parts
While milling machines can produce smaller components for the above industries, large parts are also highly valued in these sectors. For example, the aerospace industry requires large, high-performance parts for turbines, satellites, and airplanes. The power generation sector also utilizes gas and wind turbines. In automotive and transportation applications, trucks, tractors, cranes, bulldozers, ship components, and other heavy-duty equipment require large and heavy fabricated parts. Machine tables or bases, fixture plates, and other components also necessitate services for oversized workpieces. Once again, versatility is a definite advantage in milling processes.
We believe that our clients deserve the best quality in their products, and we’ve built a repertoire of comprehensive fabrication services to meet your exacting design needs. In addition to planer and CNC vertical milling, we also offer turning, boring, countersinking, knurling, tapping, and threading. Technox also provides secondary and finishing services including welding, assembly, heat treating, saw cutting, shot blasting, part repair, painting, plating, and powder coating to meet all our customers’ needs.
Our team can assist you in choosing the material and machining process that best fits your application while also providing access to our expertise in oversized and complex parts. Coordinate measuring machines (CMMs) assist us in assuring that completed components match up with the initial design specifications for superior accuracy. We aim to reduce manufacturing costs without sacrificing quality, and so Technox is in compliance with all industry standards.
Technox is committed to strict quality management, and so we ensure that our processes are compliant with the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standards, maintaining an ISO 9001:2015 certification. As an Occupational Safety and Health (OSHA)-compliant company, we also value a safe working environment for our team of experienced machinists. Finally, Technox’s American Welding Society (AWS)-certified professionals thoroughly inspect and test your welded products to guarantee optimal quality.
Contact Technox, Your Trusted Large Part Fabrication Partner
CNC milling machines have undoubtedly revolutionized large part fabrication processes. However, the quality of your large parts depends on the manufacturing team that you trust. Technox offers superior, customizable CNC and planer milling services to best meet our customers’ exacting specifications. Contact us today and let us help you maintain the highest quality with your large part fabrication project, or request a quote to get started.
For applications requiring holes drilled in workpieces of various sizes, horizontal boring services may apply. Horizontal boring machines are compatible with many types of workpieces and can efficiently drill into workpieces while achieving tight tolerances.
Horizontal Boring 101
Boring enables operators to further process cast, forged, or drilled holes that exist within a workpiece, enlarging them, improving their dimensional accuracy, or increasing the diameter of the hole. These processes can also increase surface smoothness and ensure the original hole axis’s deviation is correct.
This process relies on horizontal boring machines, which include a column, bed, spindle, saddle, and ram. The machine travels horizontally on the X-axis along the bed. Meanwhile, the saddle travels along the row vertically on the Y-axis. The plunger and boring tool then move inward on the Z-axis and outward on the W-axis. The machine then cuts around a stationary workpiece installed on the front side of the boring machine. This is what makes horizontal boring different from vertical boring, in which the workpiece turns while the tool remains stationary.
Advantages of Horizontal Boring
Horizontal boring manufacturing offers many benefits, such as:
- The Ability to Produce Large-Format Elements: The right horizontal boring equipment works with large workpieces, enabling the production of large-format parts for various industries. This is especially useful for industrial and agricultural applications.
- The Ability to Produce Large Numbers of Parts: Due to their ability to make multiple cuts simultaneously and their high speed of cutting, horizontal boring machining can produce many parts for applications requiring a high volume of components quickly.
- Minimized Tool Deflection: If a tool faces more resistance than it can handle, deflection may occur. As a result, the tool may initiate an improper drilling angle due to the application of excessive force. However, horizontal boring machines help prevent this because they maintain a closer distance between the drill and the anchor point during drilling.
- The Ability to Apply CNC Boring Technology: Computer numerical control (CNC) is a type of technology that controls certain machining tools through software programming. This enables operators to enter specific commands that machines must follow, including horizontal boring machines. These CNC machines help maximize precision while minimizing the risk for human error during the boring process.
At Technox Machine & Manufacturing Inc., we provide reliable horizontal boring services to help ensure accurate, high-quality, and timely component orders. We perform these services with some of the best horizontal boring equipment, including machines with a maximum of 120″ x 152″ x 70″ work envelope, along with a five-axis capacity. These capabilities enable us to machine some of the most complex parts at consistently fast speeds. At the same time, we can maintain precision with tolerances of ± 0.0005″.
We have the equipment and skills required to complete many machining processes and work with a wide variety of materials, including engineering plastics, high-performance alloys, and standard metals.
Contact Our Experts for Premium Horizontal Boring Solutions
If you require horizontal boring services, turn to the professionals at Technox. We’ve provided premier horizontal boring services and more to customers since 1976. With customers across a wide range of industries, including steel mills, fluid power, oil and gas, and equipment, we have a reputation for delivering quality products.