The Latest Trends in CNC Machining
CNC machining continues to evolve and new innovations are continually coming to the forefront. CNC machining trends are often driven by the need for machine shops to improve efficiency and productivity in order to remain competitive. CNC machining companies continue to be creative to gain a market advantage – and incorporating the latest CNC machining trends in machining solutions often pays big dividends.
Below are some of the current trends in CNC machining. Many of these concepts are being actively deployed, allowing manufacturers to reap the benefits of these technologies now as well as position themselves to remain competitive in the future. It should be noted that simply employing these technologies does not translate to CNC machining expertise. Proven manufacturers, like ABS with over 50 years of experience, combine state-of-the-art CNC machining equipment with decades of time on tools and machining know-how. ABS also consistently invests in the future with cutting-edge technologies, like 5-axis CNC machinery.
- Further Expansion of IIoT and AI: due to Industry 4.0 and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIOT), use of connected equipment in manufacturing is becoming the norm. Networked CNC machines are the future of manufacturing, and the IIoT even enables CNC machines to communicate with one another, further reducing the requirements for human involvement and improving product quality. Some of the technologies that CNC machine shops are employing, such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning, enable machines to “remember” – further enabling manufacturers to better understand operations and maintenance needs. In addition, manufacturers are now using sensors and real-time data collection to develop predictive maintenance programs to improve responsiveness and achieve fewer unplanned outages – the results are safer operations, lower costs and higher customer satisfaction. The IIoT also enables shops to more readily share data with OEMs from scheduling to design to optimization opportunities. The IIoT is expected to continue to expand its reach and impact other areas of the business such as how manufacturers manage inventory and equipment lifespans.
- Focus on Sustainability: sustainability has garnered a great deal of attention in recent years. Manufacturers are focusing more on their environmentally-friendliness and often work to reduce their footprint. Some ways that machine shops are increasing sustainability efforts include emissions reductions, lower energy consumption, and less waste generation. For example, many CNC machine shops are increasing the level of automation in their operations – yielding efficiency and less waste. Additionally, during the past couple of years of supply chain disruptions, CNC machine shops often have a greater appreciation for raw materials and the value of minimizing waste. Lastly, some CNC machine shops are working with OEMs to identify opportunities to reuse and recycle materials at the end of a product’s life cycle.
- Increased Use of 5- and 6-axis CNC Machining: 5-axis machines have been – and continue to be - one of the latest technology trends in CNC machining. Multi-axis equipment enables a part to be completed with a single set-up, leading to more precise machining and fewer errors as well as faster cut times. For these reasons, 5-axis machines are able to fabricate higher complexity parts and often set manufacturers, like ABS, apart from the competition. One of the latest technology advancements in CNC machining has been the addition of a new axis – making some CNC equipment capable of 6-axis machining. While this technology is still in its infancy and is not readily adopted, it is expected to grow in the coming years.
Have a complex project that requires the unparalleled precision of CNC machining?
Contact the team at ABS to learn more about our advanced machining solutions and state-of-the-art CNC equipment.
- Growth in 3D Printing: 3D printing is rapidly advancing and is now being utilized by some CNC machine shops. 3D printing is a process that builds a three-dimensional object based on a CAD sketch. 3D printing is one of several technologies under the umbrella of Additive Manufacturing , named as such since it starts from nothing and builds layer by layer of material. The 3D printing machine uses the CAD data to add successive layers of liquid, powder, or other material to manufacture a 3D object. Fabricators are able to employ 3D printers to rapidly create prototypes as well as scale models for customers – accelerating the design step for new CNC machining projects and allowing for multiple iterations without sacrificing significant time. Additionally, 3D printing typically utilizes less raw materials, leading to less waste generation and lower costs. There are some instances where a combination of 3D printing and CNC machining may be the most cost-effective solution. For example, 3D printing may be used for prototyping a part or creating a scale model. Then, CNC machining is employed for full scale production of the product.
- Increase in Robots and Automation: automation technologies continue to advance and the possible applications for Industry 4.0 innovations, such as robots, continues to rapidly expand. One area that is gaining traction in CNC machine shops is cobots – collaborative robots that work side-by-side humans. Cobots are easily programed and have excellent dexterity, making this form of automation a good option for manufacturers that need to be nimble in their workflows. Many robots use real-time data and artificial intelligence to collect information and “remember” – making these technologies incredibly capable. Cobots and other forms of digital automation improve efficiencies and enable machine shops to keep pace with market demand.
ABS CNC Machining Expertise
Established in 1971, ABS Machining has grown to become the recognized global leader in large machining, fabrication, and assembly for OEMs. The key to our success has been exceptional people, unparalleled facilities, and an unwavering commitment to quality. Our people are experts in their given field. Their expertise is matched only by their passion for serving our clients. We continue to invest in our people with education programs, cross training and in our internal accredited apprenticeship center.
ABS set out on a path over 4 decades ago to become a global leader in large machining, with the most advance and versatile fleet of equipment. By achieving this goal, ABS has grown to be recognized as one of the largest and most advanced contract manufacturing companies in North America. ABS’ fleet of CNC Boring Mills, Vertical Turning Lathes, and Table Type Boring Mills are supposed across six facilities and serviced with cranes lifting capacities up to 160 tons. Backed by a dedicated staff of professionals in each discipline of manufacturing, ABS truly offers a single source for the most challenging programs of today and for the future. Successfully achieving this goal organically required the following commitments:
- Continuous investment regardless of economic cycles.
- Acquisition of the most advanced technologies in the Large Machining industry.
- Continuous improvements and upgrades of existing capital to ensure all assets are leading edge in the industry.
- Advancing internal capabilities for maintenance programs.
- Building a Government recognized Training Facility to ensure continuity, and that future skilled trades are available.
- Investing and expansion in all support staff roles such as Safety, Quality, Engineering, and Production Control.
Contact us today to see how we can help with your CNC machining project, or give us a call at 1-844-227-6224.
CNC MACHINING · FABRICATION · ASSEMBLY
Precision Machining ↓
ABS offers a unique combination of medium to high volume production machining and welding services.
80 Large Advanced CNC Machine Tools
ABS is one of the largest and most advanced manufacturing companies in North America.
6 Plants with lifting capacity up to 160 Tons
The ABS 5-Axis machining department has been built from the ground up with our customers’ needs in mind.
Centrifugal and Turbo Machined Impellers
Fabrication & Quality Assurance ↓
Heavy Fabrication Mig, Tig, Flux Core, Sub Arc
Mig, Tig, Flux Core, Sub Arc
Inconel 625 Hotwire Tig
Inconel 625 Hotwire Tig
Quality Assurance & Control
Quality Assurance & Control