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What is High Speed Machining?

High speed machining a batch of aluminum enclosures from sheet material.

High Speed Machining

DATRON high speed machining centers are employed by thousands of manufacturers worldwide in countless applications – milling, drilling and engraving a wide range of different materials. From medical device manufacturers milling intricate printed circuit boards (PCB) for pacemakers to firearm manufacturers engraving serialization and branding on steel gun parts. Therefore, it seems clear that you can’t define “high speed machining” by identifying a particular industry, application or even material.

Further, there are some misconceptions regarding the purpose of high-speed machining and the strategies involved. In contemporary business we all have an inclination to go “faster”. Faster implies efficiency and time savings…and time is money. But there is more to the story than simply wanting to produce higher quantities of parts in a shorter period of time. But perhaps the biggest misconception is thinking that you must choose between the machine that is capable of higher speeds and the machine that is capable of providing more force.

For instance, when designing a machine, you can go in one of two directions. A machine can be built with a big motor and rely on heavy mass to provide the force and torque to drive large tools. Or a lighter machine can be developed to work with higher speeds, and a low-force spindle that is specifically designed for micro-tooling. Both types of machines can perform a variety of functions — like milling, engraving, drilling, tapping. But that’s where multi-function ends. In the end, if efficiency and quality are important to you and you need to produce both large and small parts, you’ll end up with both types of machines working side by side on the same shop floor. While this may seem like a duplication in terms of equipment expenditure, the costs are quickly recouped through the R.O.I. achieved through efficiency and versatility. You’ll produce better parts, quicker, at a lower cost.

So, in order to more thoroughly answer your questions and correct any of the misconceptions detailed above, we are presenting a High-Speed Machining White Paper as a Free Download. This White Paper defines high-speed machining as well as the micro tooling often used in high-speed applications. It also sheds light on some of the strategies used in high-speed machining, the physics involved, required CNC machine dynamics and the available technology. Additionally, specific examples are included that provide tooling types along with the feeds and speeds used to achieve exceptional results.

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40,000 RPM machining spindle
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Our DATRON experts help many customers bring manufacturing in-house. Reach out to our team to see which machine and accessories are the right fit for your parts.