Precision CNC machining is the process of manufacturing precise dimension parts. This is commonly used in the production of complex components in industries such as aerospace, automotive, and modern electronics. With the development of advanced technology and the constant improvement of techniques, it is important to choose the right materials to achieve precision CNC machining accuracy.
Generally, materials used for precision CNC machining need to have properties such as dimensional stability, machinability and ease of machining, corrosion resistance, and impact resistance. Some materials meet these standards, but not all materials are suitable for your application. To select the appropriate materials, understanding their characteristics and uses is critical. This article provides a list of raw materials that have these characteristics and are suitable for precision CNC machining.
A key reason for the popularity of CNC machining is its compatibility with various materials. CNC machining can process metals, alloys, composite materials, semiconductors, and engineering plastics. However, precision CNC machining requires specific raw materials. The following are several commonly used raw materials in CNC precision machining:
Stainless steel is undoubtedly the most commonly used material in precision CNC machining. The term stainless steel covers a wide range of grades, such as SS303, SS304, SS316, and so on. The difference between all materials within the SS range lies in the amount of alloying materials added.
In SS303, sulfur is added to obtain better machinability and a non-rusting experience. In SS304, nickel and chromium are added to enhance toughness and reduce magnetism. However, SS316 uses molybdenum to achieve marine-grade stainless steel. SS316 has high weldability, machinability, and corrosion resistance. All of the above grades of stainless steel are suitable for precision CNC machining.
Steel is one of the metallic alloys used in precision CNC machining. It has high dimensional stability and machinability. Precision CNC machining needs to consider different grades of steel, including low-carbon steel, carbon steel, plain carbon steel, low-alloy steel, and high-alloy steel.
Low-carbon steel has good ductility, while carbon steel has high strength. Plain carbon steel is the preferred choice for low ductility and high strength applications. Alloy steel can be formed by doping molybdenum, nickel, and chromium as required. Therefore, alloy steel can be used in applications that require properties such as corrosion resistance, durability, and weldability.
Brass has excellent machinability, which helps to achieve maximum precision of expected dimensions. Brass provides precise tolerances during machining and surface finish. Different grades of brass are suitable for different requirements.
The commonly used brass grades are C35300 and C36000. Brass C35300 has excellent corrosion and wear resistance. On the other hand, C36000 is suitable for parts that require high precision. It has superior machinability, so it can be used for applications that require dimensional stability and surface finish.
Aluminum is a lightweight material. It is essentially non-magnetic, making it suitable for CNC machining. It has a low deformation coefficient, high dimensional stability, and impact resistance. Therefore, aluminum and aluminum alloys can maintain accurate dimensions under different conditions (such as temperature fluctuations and external impacts). Like stainless steel, various grades of aluminum have been popularized. The following are several commonly used grades:
Aluminum 6061: It is the most popular aluminum variety. It has excellent mechanical properties, such as high strength, corrosion resistance, high toughness, and weldability.
Aluminum 7075: It has good fatigue resistance and can be used for high-strength industrial applications. Aircraft wings and fused silica glass are made from this material.
Aluminum 2024: It has high heat resistance, impact resistance, and fatigue resistance, and is therefore used in military and aerospace applications.
Aluminum 5052: It has strong chemical resistance and corrosion resistance. It is non-heat treatable, so it can be used for marine applications.
Aluminum 6063: It is a heat-treatable alloy with high weldability and durability, and can be used to manufacture complex parts.
Titanium has strong immunity to heat and oxidation. It is also highly compatible with biological factors. Its biocompatibility makes it very suitable for key industries such as medical, chemical, and aerospace. Although it is difficult to machine, its machinability can be improved through CNC machining.
The commonly used titanium grades are titanium 1-4, which can provide gradually increasing tensile strength and yield strength. Titanium Grade 5 is suitable for temperature resistance, while Titanium Grade 9 is popular for its durability.
Copper is a non-corrosive non-ferrous metal material. It has conductivity and durability, making it suitable for precision machining of electronic components. Copper alloys such as brass, bronze, nickel-silver, copper-nickel alloy are widely used.