What Is An Aluminum Wheel CNC Lathe?

Posted on Dec 14, 2020

Aluminum Wheel CNC Lathe

A wheel CNC lathe is also known as a CNC wheel machine. It is a type of CNC machining center used for car wheel machining, finishing, maintenance, and repair.

Wheel CNC Lathe

A wheel CNC lathe is also known as a CNC wheel machine. It is a type of CNC machining tool used for car wheel machining, finishing, maintenance, and repair. The wheel CNC lathe is an essential component in the automotive industry to support automobile wheel production as well as to offer wheel repair solutions to the automobile workshops. The goal of a wheel CNC lathe, in general, is to make sure of the quality of automobile wheels. Good wheel quality guarantees both the performance of the vehicle and the safety of passengers. The wheels for vehicles are made from a variety of metallic materials. An aluminum wheel CNC lathe is the machine used predominantly for processing aluminum wheels.

Alloy Wheel CNC Lathe

The alloy wheel CNC lathes refer to the CNC wheel machines used in a wheel production or repair process and the aluminum wheel CNC lathe is one of the kinds. This type of CNC wheel machine is good at processing alloys. The carbide processing techniques and tooling involved in a wheel forming process make sure the cuts on the wheels are precise and clean. Since the production of wheels is a process of removing excess materials on a workpiece, a wheel CNC lathe is also called a wheel cutting lathe. There are two types of alloy wheel CNC lathe: the vertical wheel CNC lathe and the horizontal wheel CNC lathe. They are categorized based on the spindle orientation. A vertical CNC wheel machine has a spindle positioned vertically whereas a horizontal CNC wheel machine has the spindle laid horizontally.

Diamond-Cut Wheels

The diamond-cut wheels have been gaining popularity these days. It is a type of alloy wheel that is different from the traditional painted alloy wheels and therefore it requires extra care when it comes to the repair and refurbishment of the diamond cut wheels. A diamond-cut wheel tends to have a two-tone surface finish. There is a machine-turned face with a darker inner and a silver outer. If a wheel is all the same color, it is more likely to be a traditional painted alloy wheel. Just like the traditional painted alloy wheels, a diamond-cut wheel needs repair when there are scratches on its surface. To repair and refurbish the diamond cut wheel, an alloy wheel CNC lathe is required.

Repair & Refurbishment

An aluminum wheel CNC lathe is commonly used in wheel repair and refurbishment processes. In a wheel repair process, the wheel will be rotated at a high speed. As the wheel is rotating, a stationary cutting die approaches the wheel. As the cutting die gets in contact with the wheel, the material is removed from the wheel. This is an effective way to repair the scratches and surface damages on alloy wheels. This technique is able to create a very fine finish on the surface of a wheel. With the wheel rotating at a very high speed, the aluminum wheel CNC lathe can precisely remove the excess stock from the wheel surface as well as its circumference. An alloy wheel CNC lathe is ideal for repairing diamond-cut wheels.

Wheel Repair Process

An aluminum wheel CNC lathe, or an alloy wheel CNC lathe, is used in a wheel repair process to cut back the face and cut out the damages from an alloy wheel. The process goes as aforementioned. The wheel to be repaired is rotating at a high speed on a wheel CNC lathe as a stationary cutting die advances toward its face. Once the cutting tool contacts the face, the stock is removed from the wheel. This is just the first part of the process. When the cutting is completed, it is followed by a coating process. Several coats of lacquer or paints will be applied onto the newly cut surface to bring the wheel back to its original look. The cutting done by a wheel cutting machine is important because it affects the result of the coating process directly and significantly. Extra fine finish must be achieved in the cutting process.

Spindle Head of Wheel CNC Lathe

The cutting tool of an alloy wheel CNC lathe is typically a cutting die. On a vertical alloy wheel lathe, a wheel is secured on a jaw chuck. The jaw chuck on the lathe is able to rotate at high speeds. A spindle head is positioned above the wheel and the chuck. The cutting dies mounted on the spindle approaches the wheel as the spindle goes downward. The spindle usually has a 3-axis movement capability so that it can travel across the entire face of the wheel and handle different levels of surfaces. In addition to the 3-axis machining capability, sometimes a wheel CNC lathe has the spindle incorporated with a turret to make the lathe more powerful.

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A turret is a wheel-like device that attaches to the main spindle of a wheel lathe. With the turret, a number of cutting tools can be mounted onto the circumference of the plate. Therefore, during a wheel cutting process, different cutting tools can be used to create different finishes. The change of cutting tools is simple: the turret only has to spin until the right cutting tool is positioned toward the wheel. With the tool turret, the machine idle time is reduced and the overall productivity of the process is hence improved.

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