Metal Machining: Basic Terminology

Every profession has its own terminology. This holds true for metal machining. To an outsider, many of the words may seem gibberish. To help reduce the mystique of this language, below you will find a short list of basic terms.

 * CAD (Computer aided design): These computer software programs allow machinist to create a part digitally for such processes as 3D printing or milling.

 * CAM (Computer aided machining or manufacturing): This computer software program uses a CAD file allowing a metal machining firm produce various tool paths for CNC cutting tools.

 * CNC: This is an acronym for computer numerical control. It combines with CAM and CAD software to provide a computer program for the operator to execute.

 * Chatter: This refers to a noise indicating cutting issues, e.g., dull tools, incorrect speed.

 * Chuck: This device holds the work-piece in place. One type is a magnetic chuck.

 * The depth of Cut: – This refers to the amount of metal or other material the tool removes at each pass.

 * Fixturing:  This term refers to the device – often custom-made, holding your work.

 * Feeds and Speeds: This is an adjustable calculation made to determine what speed and feed rate is best suited for slicing through the metal workpiece.

 * G-code: A CNC controller uses this language to inform the machine how fast to move and what to do etc. to perform a particular
Tool holding:  This indicates the apparatus or device holding your cutting tools.

 * Work holding:  This holds the work or metal material in place on a CNC machine.

Metal Machining

Like many other professions, machining has its own language. If you wish to take up or even understand the trade, it is important to recognize and appreciate the basic terminology. The above guide only looks at the basics. For a more in-depth look, do your research. The internet and libraries, as well as machine shops, offer a variety of readily available and comprehensive resources on metal machining.

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