CNC Milling: You Need to Know 5 Advantages and Disadvantages

We Share Information, Tips and Things We've Learned from Our Years in the 5 Axis Parts Machining and Manufacturing Industry.

CNC Milling: You Need to Know 5 Advantages and Disadvantages

Oct 10, 2022

The world's first successfully developed CNC machine tool is a three-coordinate CNC milling machine, which was established in 1952 by the American Parsons Company (Parsons) and theMassachusetts Institute of Technology( MIT) in collaboration.It wasn't until after 1967 that the technology began to gain traction in manufacturing. As of now,the global CNC milling machine marketis expected to exceed $25 billion by 2028.

Like all other machining techniques, CNC milling has its advantages and disadvantages.

Below I willintroduce the advantages, disadvantages and applications of CNC milling. But before we go any further, let's know what CNC milling is and how it differs from conventional milling.


• What is CNC milling?

• What are the advantages of CNC milling?

• What are the disadvantages of CNC milling?

• What are the applications of CNC milling?

What is CNC milling?

CNC millingis a machining process that uses computer control and cutting tools to selectively remove material from a workpiece and produce custom-designed parts. CNC milling machines have a table that automatically moves (or rotates) the workpiece in different planes so that the tool can work on it.

Unlike manual lathes, CNC mills operate by converting a 3D CAD model into a set of computer instructions, which are then used to automatically dictate tool motion and movement.

What are the advantages of CNC milling machines?

#1 Accuracy

One of the biggest advantages of using CNC mills is that they can make parts exactly to specification. Because CNC milling machines rely on computer instructions to make parts, they eliminate the potential for human error that is common with manually operated machines. This means you can accurately create complex parts while achieving tolerances of 0.003mm.

Of course, CNC milling machines are also classified. Most of the factories we see on the market are using 3-axis and 4-axis equipment. In China, very few companies use 5-axis.

Learn more: What is the Difference 3 4 and 5 Axis Machining ?

#2 Fast and Efficient

Traditional milling machines often require the operator to manually change the cutting tool depending on the cutting operation to be performed. This is not only time-consuming, but also inefficient, as the end result is based on operator judgment.

CNC milling machine hascan hold up to 30 different toolsa rotating carouselThese tools are automatically changed on the spindle during machining operations, allowing cutting operations to be performed quickly and efficiently. With a CNC milling machine, you can have parts ready in hours, while traditional methods can take days (or weeks).

#3 Broad Material Selection

CNC mills are compatible with a wide variety of materials, including plastics, metals, and composites. As long as you have a block of material, the CNC mill will have no problem machining it.

understand more: CNC Machining Materials: How to Make the Right Choice

#4 Affordability

We can talk about precision, speed, and tons of other benefits all day long, but nothing beats affordability, especially for businesses looking to rely on third-party manufacturers In terms of. CNC milling is one of the most affordable modern manufacturing processes. In fact, CNC milled partscost less than comparable 3D printed parts.

What are the disadvantages of CNC milling?

#1 More Material Waste in

CNC Milling CNC milling is a subtractive manufacturing method - it starts with a piece of material and then cuts away parts of it to form a finished part. As a result, more material is wasted in CNC milling than in additive manufacturing processes such as 3D printing.

#2 Not enough qualified technicians

Although almost the entire milling process is automated, CNC milling still requires a trained engineer or technician to program the milling machine, calculate the requirements, and supervise the milling machine in order to consistently produce high-quality parts .

Not so many machine shops can have a high-quality CNC mill operator. As a result, there are many horror stories about low-quality machined parts.

What are the applications of CNC milling?

Due to the high precision provided by CNC technology, CNC milling machines are used in a wide variety of industries, including aerospace, medical and electronics.

In theaerospace industry, they are used to make manifolds, bushings and landing gear parts.

medical industryrelies heavily on CNC milling machines to manufacture prosthetics, medical devices, and other FDA-approved medical devices. Additionally, CNC milling machines are used to manufacture heat sinks, amplifier housings and otherelectronic parts.

In addition, CNC milling machines play a vital role in the operation of other modern manufacturing technologies. For example, the high-precision copper mold patterns and cavities used in the injection molding process are often created using CNC milling machines.

Learn more: How to Find a 5-axis Parts Manufacturer in China

CNC Milling with

Guten Precision Machining is a well-known manufacturing company that has been providing high-quality rapid prototyping and precision machining services for nearly two decades. Using our advanced 3-, 4- and 5-axis CNC milling machines, our experienced engineers can help you create parts to exact specifications. Tell us about your project today!