The world of manufacturing is moving faster today than ever before. In response to the global pandemic, new markets are opening up and demanding enhanced products with cutting-edge technologies. OEMs are ramping up product development schedules to meet these needs, which requires an increase in the number of prototype parts for fabrication. The advanced capabilities of CNC milling services meet the rigorous scheduling, budget, and quality requirements of these parts. 

Machine shops use CNC milling, along with CNC turning, to fabricate high-quality parts. At Plethora, we use a wide range of advanced CNC milling machines operated by the industry’s best machinists. We understand both the prototype and regular production needs of companies like yours and fine-tune our processes and procedures to provide the manufacturing services you need. Here is how our CNC milling services can help you.

Manufacturing Precision Parts with CNC Milling

CNC milling machines fabricate parts by removing material from a product through a subtractive manufacturing process. The mill uses various rotating cutting tools to mill the material, cut slots, drill holes, and create threading. The standard CNC mill operates in three axes, while the enhanced versions operate in five to give the mill better access for fabricating unique shapes.

One of the first known milling uses was in the mass production of gun parts for the military over 200 years ago. Since then, milling machines have had incremental improvements over the years in their mode of power, precision, control, and tooling. Now, combined with intelligent software to program their cutting paths, CNC mills have evolved into precise instruments of manufacturing used around the world.

Here are some of the advantages and industries CNC milling is associated with:

 

Advantages:

Industries:

Precision fabrication:

Standard tolerances as tight as +/- 0.08mm

Aerospace:

Impellers, landing gear, hydraulic manifolds

High-quality:

Detailed inspection and QA procedures

Energy:

Turbine blades, gears & bearings, housings

Fast processing:

Turn around in as little as three days

Medical equipment:

Implants, surgical tools, orthotic devices

Minimal setup:

Smart factory software minimizes setup time

Military:

Optics, body armor, weapon components

 

To learn more about CNC milling for military applications, click here.

Materials

Not only do CNC mills yield precise results at the highest levels of quality, but they will fabricate parts using a large number of different materials. Here at Plethora, we stock many standard materials that our customers need to build parts as quickly as possible and employ a just-in-time procurement model for large production orders. We also offer material certification for industries like aerospace that require testing validation.

Here are some of the materials that we keep stocked for our customers, in addition to special ordering anything not immediately on-hand:

  • Aluminum
  • Stainless Steel
  • Steel
  • Copper
  • Brass
  • Bronze
  • Plastics including ABS, ACETAL, HDPE, and Nylon

To learn more about the materials that we have available, click here.

Capabilities

Our intelligent software considers over 1200 tools for use at Plethora when analyzing your part for CNC milling or tuning. We employ standard three-axis CNC milling machines, five-axis indexed machines (3+2 machining), and full five-axis machines. Five-axis CNC milling machines maintain continuous contact between the cutting tool and the workpiece during fabrication without stopping to re-position the workpiece.

Here are some of the tolerances that our CNC milling machines hold:

Minimum part size:

3.81mm x 3.81mm x 3.81mm

Maximum part size (3 axes):

660.4mm x 457.2mm x 127mm

Maximum part size (5 axes):

406.4mm x 406.4mm x 127mm

Standard metal tolerances:

± 0.08mm

Standard plastic tolerances:

± 0.13mm

 

To learn more about our machining capabilities, click here.

Services

Ensuring the success of your project by providing you with the best CNC machining services in the industry is one of our main goals here at Plethora. To do this, we have enhanced our business model and our production facilities to support the following fully:

  • Fast turnaround
  • Lower costs
  • Design analysis
  • Quality
  • Real-time pricing
  • Manual review

With the full suite of services that we have to offer, you can have confidence that we will build your parts correctly no matter what the requirements, according to your specifications.

To learn more about our manufacturing as a service, click here.

 

Prototyping with CNC Milling at Plethora

At Plethora, we regularly build parts in various quantities to satisfy your production requirements and specialize in building prototype parts. Many of our customers rely on us to build their custom parts, giving us the experience you’re looking for in a manufacturer for your prototyping needs. Prototypes have some unique qualities that distinguish them from regular production runs:

  • Materials: To validate the entire form, fit, and function of a part, we build it to match the final production version. In some cases, only the form and fit need validation, and non-production materials can speed up the part’s manufacturing. We will work with you to define your needs precisely and recommend alternate materials that can speed up the prototyping cycle when appropriate.

  • Schedule: Prototypes require fast builds, and our CNC milling process can turn your parts around quickly at the highest level of quality. Other aspects of the manufacturing operation, such as design analysis, offer time-saving opportunities. With our online auto DFM tools, our system will evaluate your part for manufacturability when you upload it into our system. This analysis helps reduce development time by finding any overlooked design errors before the part goes into manufacturing.

  • Scalability: Another service we provide is giving you feedback on your design to help it move from prototype to production as efficiently as possible. This feedback will improve your design from the outset and make it production-ready all at the same time. Plus, with the design loaded into our systems, we can easily transition it to full production when ready without the time and expense of moving it to another vendor.

To learn more about the CNC milling process, click here.