CNC Lathe: Guide to Achieving Precision Production

As one of the most widely used CNC machine tools today, CNC lathes are revolutionizing the way products are manufactured. Automated metalworking processes are faster, more accurate and less expensive than traditional manual machining. This technological advancement has opened up endless possibilities for manufacturers and designers, allowing them to easily create highly detailed and complex parts. In addition, there are many types of CNC lathes. Different CNC lathes are suitable for the production of different types of products, providing a guarantee for the manufacture of various complex parts.

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    1. What is a CNC Lathe?
    2. The Characteristics of CNC Lathe
    3. Types of CNC lathes
    4. How to Choose CNC Lathes?

What is a CNC Lathe?

What is a CNC Lathe

CNC lathe is one of the most widely used CNC machine tools. It is mainly used for cutting the inner and outer cylindrical surfaces of shaft parts or disk parts, the inner and outer conical surfaces of arbitrary cone angles, the complex rotary inner and outer curved surfaces, cylinders, and conical threads, etc., and can perform grooving, drilling, reaming, and reaming. Holes and borings etc.

The CNC lathe automatically processes the processed parts according to the pre-programmed processing program. We write the processing route, process parameters, tool trajectory, displacement, cutting parameters and auxiliary functions of the parts into a processing program sheet according to the instruction code and program format specified by the CNC machine tool, and then record the contents of the program sheet On the control medium, it is then input into the CNC device of the CNC machine tool to direct the machine tool to process the parts.

The Characteristics of CNC Lathe

CNC machine tool is the abbreviation of numerical control machine tool, which is an automatic machine tool equipped with a program control system. The control system can logically process and decode programs with control codes or other symbolic instructions, so as to make the machine tool move and process parts.

Compared with ordinary machine tools, CNC machine tools are similar in appearance to ordinary lathes, that is, they are composed of bed, spindle box, tool holder, feed system, pressure system, cooling and lubrication system, etc. The feed system of CNC lathes is qualitatively different from ordinary lathes. Traditional ordinary lathes have feed boxes and exchange gear racks, while CNC lathes directly use servo motors to drive slide plates and tool holders through ball screws to achieve feed movement. The structure of the feed system is greatly simplified.

Compared with ordinary machine tools, CNC machine tools have the following characteristics:

  • High processing precision and stable processing quality;
  • Multi-coordinate linkage is possible, and parts with complex shapes can be processed;
  • When the processing parts are changed, generally only the NC program needs to be changed, which can save production preparation time;
  • The machine tool itself has high precision and high rigidity, can choose favorable processing dosage, and has high productivity (generally 3~5 times that of ordinary machine tools);
  • The machine tool has a high degree of automation, which can reduce labor intensity;
  • Higher quality requirements for operators and higher technical requirements for maintenance personnel.

Types of CNC lathes

Types of CNC lathes

There are many types of CNC lathes, which can be divided into many types according to different methods, and the specifications are also different. Today we will explain the types of CNC lathes in detail.

  1. According to the tool post: it can be divided into single tool post CNC lathe and double tool post CNC lathe. The former is controlled by two coordinates, and the latter is controlled by four coordinates. Most of the double turret horizontal cars use inclined guide rails.
  2. According to the placement method:it can be divided into two categories: horizontal and vertical. There are two types of horizontal lathes: horizontal guide rails and inclined guide rails. Higher-grade CNC horizontal cars generally use inclined guide rails. Vertical CNC lathes are referred to as CNC vertical lathes for short. The main shaft of the lathe is perpendicular to the horizontal plane, and a circular worktable with a large diameter is used to clamp the workpiece. This type of machine tool is mainly used to process large and complex parts with large radial dimensions and relatively small axial dimensions.
  3. Classified by function:it can be divided into economical CNC lathes, ordinary CNC lathes and turning processing centers.
  • Economical CNC lathe

The economical CNC lathe is a simple CNC lathe formed by transforming the feed system of a common lathe with a stepping motor and a single-chip microcomputer. The cost is low, but the degree of automation and functions are relatively poor, and the turning precision is not high. Turning of low-profile rotary parts.

  • Ordinary CNC lathe

Ordinary CNC lathe is a CNC lathe that is specially designed in structure according to the requirements of turning processing and equipped with a general-purpose CNC system. The CNC system has strong functions, high automation and high machining accuracy, and is suitable for turning of general rotary parts. This CNC lathe can control two coordinate axes at the same time, that is, the X axis and the Z axis.

  • Turning Center

The turning machining center is based on the ordinary CNC lathe, adding the C axis and the power head. The better CNC lathe has a tool magazine, which can control the three coordinate axes of X, Z and C. The linkage control axis can be (X , Z), (X, C) or (Z, C). Due to the addition of the C-axis and the milling power head, the processing function of this CNC lathe is greatly enhanced. In addition to general turning, it can perform radial and axial milling, surface milling, holes whose centerline is not at the center of rotation of the part, and radial holes. drilling and other processing.

  1. According to the processing parts:it can be divided into chuck type CNC lathe and top type CNC lathe. The chuck type CNC lathe has no tailstock and is suitable for turning disc parts. The clamping method is mostly electric or hydraulic control, and the chuck structure mostly has adjustable jaws or non-hardened jaws. The top-end CNC lathe is equipped with an ordinary tailstock or a CNC tailstock, which is suitable for turning long parts and disk parts with a small diameter.

In addition, CNC lathes can also be classified into linear control CNC lathes and two-spindle control CNC lathes according to the control method. According to special or special process performance, they can be divided into thread CNC lathes, piston CNC lathes, and crankshaft CNC lathes.

How to Choose CNC Lathes

How to Choose CNC Lathes?

Three aspects can be considered when purchasing CNC machine tools

The first is whether the machine tool body can meet its own processing requirements, and the quality of the machine tool.

The second is the CNC system. There are many types of CNC systems. Choosing the right system is the key to purchasing CNC machine tools.

The last is the drive unit, which is also the key to the control of the machine tool. Different drive units can achieve different machining accuracy. When selecting the drive unit, the appropriate drive unit should be selected according to the precision requirements of the workpiece to be processed.

The CNC system is the control center of the CNC machine tool, known as the “brain” of the machine tool. The machine tool equipped with the CNC system greatly improves the precision, speed and efficiency of parts processing.

The function of the CNC system is undoubtedly an important restrictive factor for the design and selection of CNC machine tools. The following important factors must be considered in selecting a CNC system:

  1. Driving ability
  2. Full-closed-loop demand and dual-drive demand

Three, five-axis control requirements

Fourth, RTCP, the choice will be relatively large. At the same time, the export license, after-sales service, etc. of CNC system suppliers that may be involved in the five-axis function must also be carefully considered.

I believe that through the above relevant knowledge of CNC lathes, you have already had a preliminary understanding of CNC lathes. In the following, we will introduce the types of CNC lathes, single-axis CNC lathes and multi-axis CNC lathes in detail.

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