While many Original Equipment Manufacturers, designers, and engineers spend a lot of time on design and development, they may not stop to consider the importance of choosing the best possible machining shop to create prototypes or to move into full production.
This is often related to the lack of understanding of the various options offered by CNC machining. Computer Numeric Control or CNC is not a new technology, but it offers precision and exact production that never varies from item to item as occurs with manual equipment operation.
The next generation technology in CNC is in multi axis machining or 5-axis machining. This is an improvement on the basic 3-axis CNC machining systems since it allows for additional refinement of the work and also eliminates the need to reposition the workpiece or move it to a new machine.
For Original Equipment Manufacturers, the advantage of the multi axis machining is really in cost savings as well as the speed of production. As these two are tied together, it makes sense that with limited waste, faster production, and less human operator requirements the costs of production per unit can be minimized.
For machining shops, the use of the 5-axis or multi axis machining technology also saves time on setup. This is important for the customer as ease of setup ill reduce the cost of the project as well as allow for faster turnaround times, even with complex parts and components.
As the equipment is designed to run multiple tools, it can bore, drill, mill, create angles and cut all with a single setup process. Of course, as with all CNC machining, the original CAD/CAM diagram and program can be stored to be used later, allowing for an even faster turnaround with orders for future production runs.