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2-planning a CNC Program -2: Selecting the Right Machine

Choosing a machine on which to run an operation is very easy when only one machine is available. But when the machine choices are multiple it requires some thought. Things to consider are the actual size of the machine and the part to be machined. The horsepower required, the number of tools and the availability of the machine. Also considered at this point is which operations are to be performed as secondary operations.

Proper selection of machines can be the single most important factor in whether the particular job is profitable or not. Some operations, such as tapping a large number of holes, may be done more economically off the CNC machine with a tapping head instead of using valuable CNC time. Fit the job to the machine for best results

The cost of a CNC machine, paid for or not, is another factor to consider when choosing a machine. A $250,000 CNC machining center should not be tied up by the process planning if a $30,000 CNC machine can do the job just as well. R.S.
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