VMC Machinery for production and efficiency

Posted on Aug 13, 2020

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VMC Machinery for production and efficiency

As opposed to the machining with a horizontal machining center (HMC), CNC machines with the vertical machining centers (VMC) have vertically oriented spindles. VMC workpieces are usually mounted on top of their table and perform standard 2.5 or 3 axis machining operations. VMC are useful for creating the parts, die or molds with precision, accuracy, repeat-ability and surface finishes.

The term ‘machining center’ refers to a CNC (Computer Numerical Control) milling and drilling machines that have an automatic tool changer and a table that clamps the work-piece in one place. CNC machining is a process that uses machine metals and plastic parts and it involves the use of control systems to operate the  machine tools.

 

Is there a difference between a CNC and VMC?

There is no difference of these the two machines. A VMC is a machine with a CNC (Computer Numerical Control) controller. As mentioned, the cutting head in this milling machine is vertical and is a particular type of milling machine where the spindle runs in a vertical axis known as the “z” axis. They are typically enclosed and most often used for cutting metal.

Read More: Introduction to Vertical Machining or CNC VMC

 

Vertical Machining Center (VMC) with a 4th Axis

Many VMC machines have three axes, the x, y, and z-axis. Axis stands for the number of motors that can be individually driven for positional control of the tool. The x-axis is usually from left to right, the y-axis is front to back, and the z-axis is up and down. On a standard 3-axis VMC, the cutter stays in the vertical direction. In VMC’s, we can add 4th or even 5th axis as well to increase the benefits of the VMC.

If there is a 4th-axis added in the VMC, then the head can rotate around the x-axis which allows the VMC to drill holes in the front and back of the product. Hence, VMC that have an additional rotary axis are 4 axes machines. There is a fifth axis as well which adds complexity to the VMC.

 

Benefits of a Vertical Machining Center

Horizontal Machining Centers (HMC) usually come with 4th axis as compared to Vertical Machining Centers (VMC) where 3rd axis is still considered as standard machinery in most workshops. It’s also possible to add a 4th axis, enhancing the pallet changing, and add through spindle coolant as well.  There are several advantages of machining that standard VMC and VMC with 4th axis have to offer such as:

Read More: What Vertical Machining Centers Are so Popular?

 

In comparison to a HMC the VMC:

• Offers the operator easy access to its machine bay, allowing one to easily observe processing conditions – which is an option in most HMC

• Simpler Set-Up, Management, and Functionality

• Widely used in market, it is easy to use

• More Versatile in comparison and offers relatively simple CNC program controls

• Most Economically efficient and effective method of machining

• VMC are simple to use compared to HMC and easier to setup and manage.

• In a VMC, the debugger is easier hence why it’s widely used in the market.

• VMC is more versatile compared to horizontal counterparts and have relatively simple CNC controls to program. VMC are the most economical and effective way to machine metal

 

The major advantage of using a VMC is that gravity is working with you. In metal machining, a coolant must be poured on the spindle, and again – gravity helps in reaching its target when using the vertical machining center. VMC is the most suitable machine for processing plates, covers, and plate-type flat parts..

The Vertical Machine is preferred where three-axis works are done on a single face as in mold and die work. Vertical machining occurs on a vertical machining center (VMC), which utilizes a spindle with a vertical orientation. With a vertical placed spindle, tools are straight down from the tool holder, and often cut across the top of a workpiece.

 

Vertical milling offers the following advantages –

• Vertical milling machines provide users with increased visibility due to the openness provided by the orientation.

• Vertical milling is widely used in machine shops; the machines themselves are more easily available.

• CNC vertical milling machines ensure accurate cuts, reducing the risk of human error found in manual machines.

 

Vertical milling has the following Disadvantages –

Milling head part cannot be extended too long. Design is generally based on the length of the Y design. But encountered some of the workpiece surface is greater than the Y-direction of the machine. The part of the bed is fixed, so it cannot meet the processing needs. This is the fatal drawback of vertical milling machines.

The process of milling uses a specialized rotary cutting tool to remove material from a workpiece surface. The process can be used for cutting and creating details, such as holes or notches, as well as for sculpting a three dimensional piece.

Unlike drilling or traditional cutting, the tool in a mill advances perpendicularly to a workpiece on a dedicated axis, performing countless unique, small cuts to remove material from a surface in chips.

With Computer Numerical Control (CNC) technology, machinists and engineers can control vertical milling machine operations using sensitive computer systems. These systems collect design information directly from drawings and models in CAM or CAD software, which is converted into codes (NC code, G-code, and ISO code) and then translated into operational commands through the system.

A CNC vertical mill machine has cylindrical cutters oriented vertically on a spindle axis. This is especially useful for plunge cuts and drilling; these tools are considered to be the best for diesinking applications. With CNC technology, the tools in some vertical machining centers can be manipulated on up to five axes for the fabrication of custom shapes, slots, holes, and details in three-dimensional parts.

Both CNC vertical and horizontal machining allow intricate designs to be crafted from a full range of materials; ceramics, plastic compounds, composites, specialty metals and alloys, and castings are just the beginning. Any material that can be cut is compatible with these machine tools.

 

Read More: Horizontal Machining Center and Vertical Processing

 

What is a Vertical Mill?

The process of milling uses specialized cutting tools to remove material from a workpiece surface. The process can be used for cutting such as notches, holes, as well as for sculpting a three dimensional part.

Unlike drilling or traditional cutting, the tool in a mill advances perpendicularly to a workpiece on a dedicated axis, performing countless unique, small cuts to remove material from a surface in chips.

With Computer Numerical Control (CNC) technology, machinists and engineers can control vertical milling machine operations using sensitive computer systems. These systems collect design information directly from drawings and models in CAM or CAD software, which is converted into codes (NC code, G-code, and ISO code) and then translated into operational commands through the system.

A CNC vertical mill machine has tools and spindle oriented vertically. They are ideal  for plunge cuts and drilling; these tools are considered to be the best for diesinking applications. With CNC technology, the tools in some vertical machining centers can be manipulated on up to five axes for the fabrication of custom shapes, slots, holes, and details in three-dimensional parts.

Read More: Vertical milling center

 

Applications

VMC’s give the user easy access and they can monitor cutting operations. They are in clear sight and the simple setup and programming of CNC vertical machines allows for easy operation. This is also an ideal solution for small workpieces and small lots. It can be used to produce high-quality precision parts for many industries like medical, IT, auto and industrial sectors.

 

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