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CNC (Computer Numerical Control) machining is the process of removing material using a high-speed precision machine that utilizes a variety of cutting tools.

5-axis machining is the ability of a machine to move a tool or part in five different axes simultaneously. Basic machining is performed on three spindles, X, Y, and Z; however, 5-axis CNC machining tools can rotate two additional axes, A and B, which provides a multi-directional approach to the cutting tool.

5-Axis Machining vs. 3+2 Axis Machining

5-axis machining offers three linear axes and two rotary axes working simultaneously for complex surface machining. 3+2-axis machining offers a 3-axis milling process with two additional axes to rotate the clamping tool to a fixed position instead of repeating the operation during machining.

5-axis machines help you handle tighter tolerances to achieve complex geometries, while the 3+2 system allows you to hold less complex parts in positions that allow better access to features.

 5-Axis CNC Machine

 5-Axis CNC Machine

Benefits of 5-axis machining

5-axis machining helps to manufacture complex designs in a cost-effective manner. The advantages of switching to 5-axis machining include

1. Minimized setup

5-axis machines allow you to work on all surfaces except the clamping area and bottom. This breadth of ability significantly reduces the need for multiple setups or special fixtures. When machining contoured parts or parts that need to be machined on multiple surfaces, 5-axis technology does the job in one setup, reducing the number of setups and helping you save time.  

2. Complex designs

The additional motion provided by 5-axis machining allows you to achieve complex shapes and designs. With 5-axis machines, you can obtain machined angles and arcs that were previously only possible with multiple setups and a multitude of special fixtures. Ultimately, 5-axis machining eliminates the need to create complex fixtures because you can hold the part once and rotate it in a single process to obtain the desired geometry.

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3. Relational accuracy

Inaccuracy will find a way to permeate every setup change. Once the part comes out of the machine, the exact alignment is lost. By using the same "zero" or "home" position, feature-to-feature accuracy can be improved.

Simultaneous 5-Axis Machining

Simultaneous 5-Axis Machining

4. Faster material removal

In 5-axis machining, the cutting tool stays tangential to the cutting surface, resulting in shorter cycle times, which helps save money because you remove more material with each tool pass.

5. Better surface finish

Using the rotating fourth and fifth axes, the part can be positioned to bring it closer to the cutting tool. If the part can be moved closer to the cutting tool, then the cutting tool can be shorter. Shorter tools are less susceptible to vibration at higher cutting speeds, which can directly affect surface finish.

Labor and material cost savings are not the only reasons to consider using a 5-axis machine. Using one 5-axis machine rather than multiple machines can reduce or eliminate much of the need for expensive special fixtures. In addition, using multiple machines requires redundant tooling sets. Using a single 5-axis machine reduces the number of tool sets and tool extensions.

At Kesu Hardware, we provide 5-Axis Machining Services for complex and difficult parts in Aluminium 7075, Titanium, Magnesium, Inconel 718, Stainless Steel 17-4PH, Ceramics, ABS, PEEK, etc. One-stop manufacturing service for high precision parts, like engine, cylinder block, impeller, etc. Non-standard, High Precision, No MOQ. Discuss your upcoming 5-axis or CNC machining project by contacting us here, or submitting an online quote here.

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