CNC Machine

At Aero-Flex, we have the right CNC Machines for all your aerospace component needs.  Having been in business since 2008 with a combined experience of 75 years, we know a thing or two about manufacturing, and getting the job done.  From our five axis CNC machining centers to our line of CNC lathes, we have the equipment and know how to become certified in both ISO9001:2015 and AS9100 Rev. D.


CNC is short for Computer Numeric Control.  In a CNC machine tool, a computer controls various motors, which in turn moves the tool or work, instead of using handwheels as in manual machines.  What this brings about is several advantages over manual machines including efficiency, spot-on accuracy and repeatability.

In practice, the CNC operator or machinist enters a series of codes into the on-board computer which directs the tool’s or work’s movements.  He then sets the correct cutting tools according to the task at hand and begins making parts.  A skilled operator can operate more than one machine simultaneously, which is where the efficiency of the CNC comes in.

CNC machining has been streamlined in recent decades with Computer Aided Design/Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAD/CAM) software interfaces.  In this system the technician or engineer can design a part on CAD software from his office desk and that design is fed directly into the CNC machine, where it generates tool paths to control the movement of the machine tool.

Five Axis CNC

A five axis CNC Machining Center is a type of milling machine with the cutting tool capable of moving in five separate ways:

  1. Linearly from side to side
  2. Linearly from front to back
  3. Up and down
  4. Pivot front and back
  5. Pivot side to side

In this way, the tool can approach the work from any direction not only one axis at a time, but also in combination with each other to provide complex geometries not available otherwise.  Having all axes available also minimizes transferring the work to other machines for secondary operations, as these machine tools have automatic tool changes available during the cycle.

CNC Lathe

CNC Lathes are as varied as their milling machine counterparts, with several designs available.  The basic lathe, however, can be thought of as follows:  The work revolves in a chuck while remaining otherwise stationary while the cutting tools are brought into contact with it.

Most CNC lathes have a moveable turret containing several cutting tools available for turning, facing, and drilling the work to its specified dimensions.  Long bar stock is often fed through the spindle of the lathe to produce multiple parts, and a separate cut-off tool is used to part off each component after machining is complete.  The bar is then fed forward, and the process repeats itself.  As each movement is computer controlled, repeatability is easily obtained from one part to the next, provided that tool wear is accounted for.

Other CNC Machines

Besides lathes and machining centers, there are several other CNC Machine tools that are computer controlled including grinding machines, laser cutters, and welders.  Each has the same advantages over manual machines, and new systems are always evolving.





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