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Browsing articles in "Manufacturing"

Rapid Prototyping With ProtoLabs

Jun 29, 2015   //   by Bob Warfield   //   3D Printing, Blog, Business, Manufacturing  //  5 Comments

ProtoLabs bills itself as the “Fastest Provider of CNC Machined and Injection Molded Parts.”  They were founded in 1999 by Larry Lukis, a successful computer entrepreneur who was dissatisfied with how hard it was to get injection molded parts made quickly for his computer company.  Lukis decided there had to be a better way and…

The 5 Hardest Things About CNC Feeds and Speeds

Jun 17, 2015   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Blog, FeedsSpeeds, Manufacturing, Software, Techniques  //  9 Comments

When we recently did our What’s Hard About Learning CNC survey, the area that came out ahead of all the others was Feeds and Speeds:

What’s Hard About Learning CNC?
It was rated the hardest category by beginners, intermediate, and advanced CNC’ers–everyone has trouble with Feeds and Speeds, at least some of the time.  In…

What’s the Value of All Those Options Your Machine Dealer Wants to Sell You?

May 30, 2015   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Blog, Business, Manufacturing, Software, Techniques  //  No Comments

Industrial CNC Machines are complex beasts.  Part of that complexity is inherent, and part of it comes from the myriad of features available for the machine.  This article is all about a dollars and cents approach to figuring out what those extra options are worth to you.  The idea is to come up with a…

Great Grinding Videos from Suburban Tool

May 20, 2015   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, Manual, Manufacturing, Products, Techniques  //  1 Comment

Have you spent much time on a surface grinder?  Do you ever need to hold a couple of tenths or less on a part?  Would you like to make super-precision tooling?
This kind of work is a little off the beaten path for many machinists.  It’s the realm of Tool Making and Toolmakers, and it’s…

4 Premium Coolant Systems and How to Calculate Their Feeds and Speeds in G-Wizard

May 13, 2015   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Blog, FeedsSpeeds, Manufacturing, Products, Software, Techniques  //  2 Comments

Coolant, in many ways, is the lifeblood of CNC, although paradoxically, it’s “Coolant” properties are it’s least valuable component for many of the Coolant options that are available.  This article surveys the different Coolant options, talks a bit about their pros and cons, and shows how to set them up in G-Wizard Calculator so your…

Auto Loading a Milling Vise

Apr 24, 2015   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Blog, CNC Projects, Manufacturing, Techniques  //  4 Comments

Saw this one on the latest installment of the Tormach blog.  It’s an auto-loading setup for a milling vise built by machinist Joe Gerad:

Auto-Loading a Milling Vise…
We’ve featured vise auto-loaders before, but this one is so cheap and cheerful, I just had to run it here.  There’s a pneumatic gripper mounted on the…

Do You Know All the Different Kinds of Digital Tooling?

Digital Tooling–that’s my catchphrase for CAD, CAM, CNC Control Software, Feeds and Speeds Calculators, G-Code Editor/Simulators, and all the rest of the CNC Software that’s out there.  We’ve had a page up for a long time that is intended to walk folks through all the different kinds of CNC Software so they know what’s available…

Use a Robot to Change Milling Vise Jaws? Yes, Please!

Apr 13, 2015   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Blog, Cool, Manufacturing, Products, Techniques  //  1 Comment

I’m always fascinated by the degree of automation that’s possible in CNC manufacturing.  There’s certainly no end of pallet changers and similar methods for loading workpieces, but how about a robot that swaps out your vise jaws?  Almost anything is possible if you’ve got the cash to automate.  Check out this neat video of one…

Cobalt Chrome Feeds and Speeds + Material Selection in G-Wizard

Mar 2, 2015   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, FeedsSpeeds, Manufacturing, Software, Techniques  //  No Comments

The latest version of G-Wizard Calculator, v2.75, adds Cobalt Chrome to our list of Materials.
“What is Cobalt Chrome?” you might ask.  Why it’s just what the Dr ordered, almost literally.  CoCr is the common abbreviation.  There are several alloys available such as ASTM F75 or F799.  CoCr is extremely resistant to temperature, corrosion, and…

Cellular Manufacturing: Lean Manufacturing Principles, Part 10

Feb 23, 2015   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, Business, Manufacturing, Techniques  //  No Comments

This is Part 10 of our series on Lean Manufacturing Principles.
Cellular Manufacturing is a particular model for workplace design that is an important part of Lean Manufacturing.
Many times, shops are organized around particular tasks–all the milling machines are in a department or area, all the lathes are in a department or area, all…

Your Secret Productivity Booster: Conversational CNC

Feb 20, 2015   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, GCode, Manual, Manufacturing, Software, Techniques  //  2 Comments

NYCCNC has a great video out showing off the Conversational CNC capabilities of the Tormach Lathe and it’s Path Pilot controller:

Take a few minutes and let John from NYCCNC show you how easy it is to make a part with Conversational CNC.  He’s able to go through a series of steps including Turning, Facing,…

Results of 2015 CNCCookbook End Mill Brand Survey

Feb 5, 2015   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, FeedsSpeeds, Manufacturing, Products, Techniques  //  16 Comments

Wow, we got almost 700 votes for some 75 different end mill brands in just a few days.  This has been one of our most popular surveys ever.
Here are the results:
Major Brands
The Major Brands accounted for 75% of the votes.  The breakdown is as follows:

Major brand market share: these brands accounted…

What is Your CNC Machine’s Hourly Rate?

Jan 29, 2015   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Blog, Business, Manufacturing, Products, Software, Techniques  //  4 Comments

Do you have hourly billing rate figures for all of your CNC Machines?  It’s handy to know what you need to be able to bill out a machine at to pay for the cost of having it sitting on your Shop Floor.  G-Wizard Estimator includes a super simple Machine Hourly Rate Calculator that makes it…

Results of Our 2014 Workholding Survey

Jan 11, 2015   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, Manufacturing, Techniques  //  1 Comment

Our last survey of 2014 (we barely got it in by launching it December 31st!) was all about what methods folks were using to affix workholding (vises, clamps, fixture plates, and so on) to their milling machine tables.  Here’s the result:

How do you affix workholders (vises, clamps, fixture plates, and so on) to your …

Another Shoe in the CADCAM Consolidation Game Drops: Cimatron + GibbsCAM

Nov 25, 2014   //   by Bob Warfield   //   3D Printing, Blog, Business, Manufacturing, Software  //  3 Comments

The CADCAM Consolidation Game continues as 3DSystems announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Cimatron Systems for $97M.  Cimatron includes both the Cimatron CAD system and GibbsCAM.  The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2015.  Both company’s boards have approved the transaction, but regulatory and shareholder approval are…

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