When Does 5-Axis Machining Make Economic Sense for Your Parts?

When Does 5-Axis Machining Make Economic Sense for Your Parts?

When it comes to CNC machining, time is precious for every manufacturer. 5-axis CNC machine tools are generally reserved for undertaking complicated and specialized applications. This includes large and small manufacturers who have now realized the value of streamlining the fabrication of higher volume parts. 5-axis machining is an efficient way to produce a wide range of parts. This is especially true when combined with robotics.  So when does 5-Axis Machining make economic sense for your parts?

The pluses of 5-axis machining are that it saves time. As well as having better machine utilization, it also improves quality. But it also makes economic sense for both complex parts and projects requiring higher quantity parts. And this is why Ricaurte Precision assesses every step of your fabrication process to deliver 5-axis machining solutions that meet your production needs. 

Why 5-Axis Machining?

5-axis machining involves using CNC to move cutting parts across five different axes simultaneously. Therefore across a true 5 Axis. This makes it possible to machine very complex parts that otherwise could have been challenging. This is one of the reasons why 5-axis machining is often preferred for aerospace and medical device components. Since it is where tight tolerances and consistency is imperative. 

Top Reasons 5-Axis Machining Makes Economic Sense

1. Reduces Production Costs 

Most of the time, it is possible to reduce the overall production cost per part when using 5-axis machining. Traditional 3-axis machines are only capable of working on a single side of a part at a time. Parts requiring multiple finished sides have to be recalibrated and manually set up again to machine additional faces. However, 5-axis milling machines are capable of working on five different axes. Therefore reducing the production time and cost if the technology is available. Efficiencies are further driven by robotics and pallet systems. These are equipped with robots to move around pallets and tooling technology to run parts 24/7.  

2. Cost of Using 5-Axis Machines & Just In Time Manufacturing 

The cost of using 3-axis machines for complex operations and higher quantity parts often outweighs the cost of 5-axis machining. Traditional machines involve the high cost of multiple setups to finish a part and special fixturing. They also involve a lot of time wasted in re-fixturing and orienting parts. The labor involved in those procedures is also high, leading to an increase in cost. On the other hand, although 5-axis machine programming, fixtures, and setup are often complex and time-consuming, higher quantity part fabrication can be automated allowing for Just In Time fabrication of parts based on customer needs. 

3. Ease of Use and Increased Accuracy

Today’s best CNCs are packed with features that make 5-axis machines easier to set up and use. For example, 5-axis machines usually entail automatic tool center point control, dynamic fixture offset (3+2), collision avoidance, and automatic tool posture control. These features make it easier to use 5-axis machines while increasing the accuracy of machined parts. 

In conclusion…

Due to the high speed and efficiency of 5-axis machines, manufacturers are quickly upgrading from 3-axis machines. At Ricaurte Precision, we assess every step of the fabrication process to meet your quality and delivery requirements. If you are interested in taking advantage of the efficiencies of 5-axis CNC machining for your fabrication needs, contact us today.