Vertical VS Horizontal Machining Centers

VMC or HMC?

February 27, 2012

Vertical vs. Horizontal 3Should your next CNC machine tool be a vertical machining center (VMC) or a horizontal machining center (HMC)? The answer depends on the kind of work your shop typically performs.

Cost, of course, is always a prime consideration. However there is a huge difference between initial cost and overall cost. For example, a vertical machining center (VMC) typically has a lower initial purchase price than a horizontal machining center (HMC). So if your shop specializes in machining large, flat workpieces that require a single operation, a quality Okuma VMC may be an excellent option. However, if you often work on various sizes of prismatic parts, an HMC is a better choice.

But what about that initial price difference? That’s where looking at the overall cost of operation comes in. You see, when it comes to machining multi-sided parts, a HMC can save you considerable time and money. How? By eliminating much of the part handling associated with VMCs. In fact a number of studies, including those by The University of Michigan and American Machinist, find that the average VMC utilization, as measured by spindle run time, is only 25% versus 85% for HMCs.

For the rest of the story, and to see how you can make a more informed decision about which machining center is right for you, read the whitepaper. Or contact the manufacturing technology experts at Gosiger. They have all of the facts on Okuma VMCs and HMCs for general machining, heavy machining and high speed machining needs.