Rapid Prototyping: Subtractive vs. Additive

Additive vs subtractive rapid prototyping may be a matter of knowing which process best suits your needs since both have their place

With additive manufacturing and 3D printers being such a hot topic these days, it’s important to remember why subtractive processes like milling are still incredibly important to rapid prototyping. But first, let’s examine some of the benefits and limitations of additive rapid prototyping (or direct digital manufacturing). Benefits of Additive Rapid Prototyping The process of additive …

CNC Machinist Trial and Error: An Unfortunate Reality

Trial and error is sometimes a requirement for CNC machinists to dial in their program, minimize their cycle time and perfect their finished parts.

So here we are.  You have read all of my eloquent, informative, and groundbreaking (perhaps a minor exaggeration) blogs.  You are ready.  You have a pencil behind your ear and a calculator on your desk and you’re going to trust in the numbers!  Slow down there cowboy, because the most important thing to remember is …

Dynamic Toolpaths to Optimize CNC Machining

Dynamic tools paths help to extend tool life and the life of your machining spindle.

If you have spent any considerable time in a machine shop I am sure you have heard the term “dynamic milling.” There are many other names out there depending on the CAM software you use – Edgecam calls it “Waveform” while Surfcam calls it “TrueMill.”  Solidcam calls it “iMachining” while Mastercam calls it “Dynamic Milling.” …

Balanced CNC Tools Reduce Vibration for High RPM and Feed Rates

CNC balanced tools are used in high speed machining applications to increase feed rates and improve cycle times.

Push Your Program to the Limit with Balanced CNC Tools. I talk a lot about optimizing programs, some would say too much. I go on about it to lull my children to sleep. Though, I think there are worse subjects to obsess over. So, with that aside, let’s talk a little about tooling – specifically …

5 Reasons to Use DATRON Dental Tools

Dental milling tools from DATRON have superior geometry and specialty coatings for better quality and tool life.

1: Unique Patented Design and Geometry of DATRON Dental Milling Tools DATRON prides itself on having a unique approach to tooling development. Through careful guidance from RD Dental at DATRON AG, a patented design and geometry has been achieved in all DATRON Dental milling tools.  This includes specific flute cutting surfaces and the overall blend of actual …

Job Setup Sheets and Documentation for the Machine Shop

Job set up sheet in a file folder for documenting all aspects of a CNC machining job.

If you visit ten machine shops you will more than likely find ten drastically different approaches to setup sheets and documentation procedures.  Every one of them is the best.  Just ask.  Proper and organized documentation and setup sheets are vital to the efficient operation of any shop, and adding multiple shifts and operators or programmers …

5 Tips for Holding Small Parts on a Vacuum Table

Vacuum tables or vacuum chucks can be used to hold sheet materials and small flat workpieces during the CNC machining process.

So, if you’ve been reading this blog, or cruising through our website, then I’m fairly sure you’re aware that we make an extremely capable CNC vacuum table. It’s the must have fixture for many industries – rapid prototyping, signage, front panels, etc. Where the vacuum table can truly shine is holding very small parts. I once ran …