A couple of decades ago, mechanized production of goods was unimaginable. But today, this is very much a reality partly due to the rapid advancement of CNC machines. Moreover, CNC machines can be preset, making it easy to attach them to robotic arms without hiring experts.
CNC machines are meant to carry out any task that has been allocated to them, such as gripping, welding, painting, among others. For instance, in the production of car fragments, a CNC robot arm can execute tasks such as assembly, part placement, and part rotation.
It may appear as if setting up and controlling these devices is daunting; however, this is not the case. You can learn how to handle and utilize the robotic arm’s controllers in a very short time.
Also, if you search online, you will find several components allied to CNC machines that can help you handle these machines. But, first, let’s look at how CNC machines have enhanced production lines and the types of CNC machines available today.
How Have CNC Robots Enhanced Production Lines?
CNC Robots Have Made Production Somewhat Cheap
The law of supply and demand states that when supply is equal to or greater than demand, the price of good or services drops. CNC machines can exploit this law through the production on many parts, which makes the purchase price of the produced pieces to be relatively small.
CNC Robots Have Enhanced the Precision of Production Practices
Back then, employees had to spend several years honing their skills in order to produce identical parts. They had to learn the craft through apprentice programs under the tutelage of other seasoned employees.
However, today production of similar parts is not an issue thanks to the widespread use of CNC robots. These machines can replicate components with such precision that you would have to get a micrometer to spot any defects.
CNC Robots Have Enhanced Production Speeds
If you have any faulty or worn-out components, you don’t have to wait for long periods to get replacements. Subject to the complexity of the part, you can get it in a couple of hours. This is because businesses are now using CNC robots in part production.
These machines don’t need breaks when running; they simply do what their preset programs stipulate. A good case study is in Alibaba warehouses, where CNC robots are used to process orders quickly so that clients don’t have to wait for long to get their items delivered.
CNC Robots Have Made Production Practices Safer for Personnel
Production tasks such as welding always come with the threat of causing physical harm to manual operators. However, CNC robots are fitted with collision-prevention components; thus, they don’t pose a massive risk to manual operators working alongside them.
What Are the Different Kinds of CNC Machines?
CNC Laser Cutting Machines
CNC laser machines have a protruding part with a highly dedicated laser beam that is used to exactly slice, cut, or engrave pieces. First, the laser heats the piece and causes it to liquefy or vaporize, thereby creating a cut in the piece. Usually, the piece is in the form of a sheet, and the laser beam hovers back and forth to make a precise cut.
This process can make a broader range of designs than other conservative cutting machines such as CNC milling machines and CNC lathes. In addition, the resulting cuts or edges in laser machines do not require additional finishing, such as flushing with water.
CNC laser engravers are typically used in marking and decorating machined pieces. For instance, it can be challenging to imprint the logo and the name of a company using CNC mills or CNC lathes, but CNC laser machines are pretty straightforward.
CNC Plasma Cutting Machine
A CNC plasma machine is a precision device that is powered by electronically ionized gas. This machine is fast, and it can slice through 10 meters of material in just a minute. But, unfortunately, CNC plasma cutters need a massive working area.
This is because the machine must have ample buffer space since it produces sparks, and it needs to have a relatively colossal HVAC system. This makes sure that the personnel working alongside the machine are not affected by the harmful byproducts.
CNC Turning and Lathing Machine
CNC turning and lathing machines are characterized by their capacity to turn materials during the machining process. The cutting components in these machines are fed in a lined motion along the turning bar stock.
CNC turning and lathing machines can create internal and external features on a piece such as drilled holes, reamed holes, broaches, tapers, slots, threads, among others. Parts machined using CNC turning and lathing machines include screws, nuts, bolts, etc.
CNC Milling Machine
CNC milling machines are characterized by the capacity to turn their cutting components while holding the workpiece in place. They can produce various shapes, including shallow and flat surfaces in the workpiece. Also, they can create outlying features such as deep cavities.
During the milling process, manual operators load material into the machine, and then the machine follows a preset course and cuts through the material with maximum accuracy.
CNC EDM (Electric Discharge Machines)
A CNC EDM utilizes highly controlled electric sparks to tune pieces into the desired shape. This process can also be called die sinking, wire burning, spark eroding, or spark machining.
During the process, a piece is placed beneath the electrode wire, and the machine is programmed to discharge an electric current from the electrode wire, which produces immense heat of up to 12,000 degrees Celsius.
Afterward, the piece is flushed with liquid to produce the desired shape. EDM is commonly used to create precise micro holes, angled features, and more complicated cuts on a workpiece. It’s generally used for extremely rigid metals that would otherwise be difficult to machine to the desires shape.
To sum it all up, the future of production lies with the extensive deployment of robotic technology in production lines. As illustrated above, CNC robots are at the forefront of this endeavor to mechanize most if not all processes in production lines.