About Drilling and Tapping Machines

Posted on Jun 17, 2019

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In the history of machine tool development, there are two main directions that have been highly evaluated and widely accepted. The first is customization, that is, the machines produced for specific processing tasks to achieve the best and fastest production. The other is versatility, which enables a machine to have more than two kinds of processing capabilities, which will increase the added value of the machine, so that the business owner does not need to purchase new machine tools for new orders.

In the history of machine tool development, there are two main directions that have been highly evaluated and widely accepted. The first is customization, that is, the machines produced for specific processing tasks to achieve the best and fastest production. The other is versatility, which enables a machine to have more than two kinds of processing capabilities, which will increase the added value of the machine, so that the business owner does not need to purchase new machine tools for new orders.

Machine tools that can perform drilling and tapping tasks include turning centers (i.e. turning and milling centers), milling machines, machining centers, tapping centers, etc. We will introduce two of them in this article.


Turning centers

Based on its functions, the turning and milling machine is also called CNC turning center. It is a machine tool with both turning and milling functions. The rotary axis is used to rotate the work piece to perform various machining operations, such as cutting, knurling, grinding, drilling, deformation, finishing, and turning. These machining methods are performed by tools applied to the work piece to create objects symmetrical to the axis driven by the spindle. Under normal circumstances, lathes are divided into two categories according to the way of clamping work pieces, namely vertical lathes and horizontal lathes.

In a vertical lathe, the work piece is clamped vertically, and the cutting tool is installed in the same direction and processed vertically. Compared with horizontal lathes, vertical clamping will be stronger due to the effect of gravity. Therefore, manufacturers of vertical lathes usually turn vertical lathes into first-class manufacturing equipment for various industrial users who pursue high precision, such as automobiles industry, aerospace departments, sports equipment and other fields with larger-sized work pieces.

In the vertical clamping mechanism, the spindle of the vertical lathe is located behind the chuck. The spindle may be driven by a belt, and some may be equipped with other types of drive mechanisms. Like other milling machines and machining centers, lathes can also be equipped with power tools and tool magazines to improve their functionality and versatility and provide users with greater processing possibilities. Power turret is a standard accessory for modern CNC lathes and one of the most important accessories for CNC lathe users. Taiwan has many well-known power turret and power tool companies to support the needs of lathe users worldwide.

Many powered turrets are driven by single servo motors to ensure the best machining results and save energy consumption. At the same time, they can also provide great rigidity to the work piece, thereby providing ideal cutting performance.


Machining center

Another multifunctional machine that can perform drilling, tapping, or boring tasks is a machining center. The machining center is a highly developed machine tool that can handle a variety of precision machining tasks on one machine tool. The machining center was developed from a milling machine in the middle of the last century. Since then, this type of machine tool has developed well in the industry and has been widely used in various industries.

During the milling process, the rotating tool is pushed into one or more work pieces to remove the work piece material. This processing method can be done in different directions. Milling also involves a variety of operations, ranging from single tiny parts to heavy and large milling tasks. Similar to turning, milling is one of the most commonly used machining methods to provide precision tolerances. Due to its practical value, the milling method is very popular in industry. Compared with milling, it is difficult for traditional lathes to realize the processing of work pieces with complex contours. With this expectation, the concept of machining center was gradually formed.

The term "machining center" can be used to describe various CNC (computer numerical control) drilling and milling machines equipped with some key but sometimes optional accessories, such as tool magazines, automatic tool changers (ATC), power tool turret, coordinate measuring machine (CMM), and multi-axis worktable.


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