Why 5-axis Machines Make Sense for Almost Every CNC Shop
Even if your current work load does not require 5-axis simultaneous machining, you should seriously consider adding this capability. Here’s why:
- Although less than 5% of machined parts require 5-axis simultaneous machining, over 60% of parts are machined on 5 sides. This means that you must either move the part to multiple machines or reposition the part several times within a 3-axis machine to complete all operations, and each time your operator touches the workpiece adds labor cost to the part. In addition, all of this part handling can lead to mistakes that produce scarp and rework. Completely machining the part in one 5-axis machine eliminates these problems.
- Labor and material cost savings are not the only reason to consider a 5-axis machine. Using one 5-axis machine instead of multiple machines reduces or eliminates much of the need for costly special fixtures. Plus, using multiple machines requires redundant sets of tools. Using one 5-axis machine reduces the number of tool sets and tool extensions.
- Multiple machine tools can eat up a great deal of precious floor space. One 5-axis machine that replaces several 3-axis machines opens up room for more dollar-productive activities.
- Beyond the cost-savings on current work, a 5-axis machine enables you to compete for jobs that were previously beyond your capabilities or simply too costly to take on.
- The newest generation of 5-axis machines incorporate additional functions including additive manufacturing (3D printing) and more that can give you yet another advantage over the competition.
You can download a free white paper, “Demystifying 5-axis CNC Machining” to see cost justification examples and learn more about various 5-axis machine types. Your local Gosiger location, team members will be happy to discuss your needs and help you determine if 5-axis machining makes sense for your shop.