Posted February 18, 2021

Choosing The Best CNC Services for Rapid Machining

High precision part fabricated by CNC rapid machining services

When a manufacturer’s industrial equipment breaks down, their production stops until they can make repairs. Similarly, a medical equipment company can’t continue its fight against COVID-19 without an urgently needed fixture update. What do these two scenarios have in common? They both require CNC services for rapid machining.

When mission-critical equipment and tools need replacement or updating, companies require them to as quickly as possible. Here is where the services of a CNC machine shop that specializes in rapid machining is essential. It’s necessary to define rapid machining and underscore what you need to know to choose the best machine shop for manufacturing services.

What is Rapid CNC Machining Services?

Rapid CNC machining involves fabricating a part and returning it to the customer who requested it as quickly as possible. To do this, the CNC machine shop will improve its different manufacturing processes to shorten the through-put time for a new project. Here are the areas that these improvements focus on:

  • Ordering system: Traditional ordering systems involve either phone calls or written orders or both that have to be manually processed. This system can take a couple of days to get a quote back to the customer. An online quoting system will process the customer’s part data and order requirements, followed by an instant quote.
  • Part evaluation: A manual part evaluation may take several days before a written assessment of the part’s manufacturability returns to the customer. An automated part evaluation system connected to the online order will cut that time down to seconds. Parts that are not manufacturable will flag as such in the quote. Parts that pass the evaluation will have already been uploaded into the CNC system in preparation for manufacturing.
  • Machining equipment and tools: Having a more comprehensive range of lathes and milling equipment along with a variety of cutting tools will give the machine shop greater versatility in how they assign work. This versatility guarantees that the best equipment and tool choices, ensuring that each project is machined as quickly as possible.
  • Skilled machinist: The job’s speed depends on the operators’ expertise working on them. Employing experienced machinists who are highly skilled in their abilities ensures that each project is done the first time correctly.
  • Detailed quality control: Quality control includes building a part without errors and improving all of the machine shop’s manufacturing processes. The benefits of these efforts are passed directly onto the customer with quicker completion of their projects.

As the machine shop incorporates these improvements into their manufacturing processes, the time to manufacture a part decreases, resulting in rapid CNC machining. There are several benefits that customers will receive with a machine shop equipped for rapid machining.

How CNC Services for Rapid Machining Can Help You

Rapid CNC machining services provide OEMs with the following benefits for the parts that they request:

  • Quick production of replacement or updated parts means less down-time and happier end-use customers.
  • Prototype parts are available sooner to help engineers design in real-time instead of waiting for days or weeks to continue their work.
  • Reduced manufacturing time and expenses help to get new product development done on time and within budget.
  • Faster times to market translate to higher profits and continued product development.

It is important to remember that for rapid CNC machining to be successful, there are a couple of details for the customer to be aware of:

  • Materials: The type of materials you specify will impact how fast the part can be machined. For instance, aluminum and plastic are easier and therefore quicker to work with, while bronze and steel will take more time. The harder the materials, the longer it takes to machine them.
  • Geometries: The more complicated the part, the more complex the machining will be. The part may require frequent repositioning, which takes time, or it may require the use of a multi-axis machine, which is more expensive to operate.
  • Documentation: The fabrication of a part can slow due to unclear or missing documentation. Parts with multiple tolerances or specific instructions such as threading need to have these details included in the documentation.

The key to success is to work with a trusted machine shop to help you with any questions about these details.

Choosing the Best Vendor for Rapid CNC Machining

For reliable rapid CNC machining of your parts, you need to find a vendor that has incorporated the preceding improvements into their processes. Those elements will give them the manufacturing advantage for fabricating your products as quickly and as efficiently as possible. One of the first indicators of a machine shop that can provide rapid machining is to have an online quote system available to their customers on their website. From there, you can assess their other capabilities, such as quality control.

When you have settled on the machine shop that you are going to use, the next step is to provide them with all the information they need to manufacture your part successfully. This information will include a complete and correct CAD model and any other drawings or documentation required for clarity. With this data in hand, the machine shop will build your part quickly and without any errors.

At Plethora, we specialize in rapidly manufacturing precision parts using the industry's most advanced CNC machining equipment and software. We are equipped with continuous five-axis machining, turning with live tooling, and our approach with software allows us to hit your specifications and geometries precisely. We are ISO 9001 certified, and our goal is to manufacture your parts quickly and at the highest quality levels.  Our online DFM and quoting systems are ready to receive your data so we can begin working together on your next project. To get started, upload your design files to Quote My Part or call us at 415-726-2256.

Quote My Part


The Plethora Team

The Plethora team is your go-to CNC manufacturer for hardware done right the first time. We have the tools and experience needed to create high quality custom parts quickly and with precision, whether you need a prototype or production run.

Topics: Design, Manufacturing, finishing, CNC machining, Quality, Prototyping