966 Brooks Avenue, Holland, MI, 49423

What Is Precision Machining?

February 3, 2024

Precision machining stands as a pinnacle in the world of manufacturing, employing computer-controlled machine tools to produce parts with unparalleled accuracy. This high-velocity machining process is essential for creating components that demand tight tolerances, intricate designs, or both. Executed by our skilled precision machinists and through the efficiency of our lights-out robotics, precision machining at Omni is a subtractive manufacturing process that starts with a solid block of material and meticulously carves out the desired shape with a cutting tool.

At its core, precision machining revolves around two critical elements: top-tier cutting tools and a high-precision Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machine. The cutting tool must possess precision ensuring the final product aligns perfectly with the intended dimensions.

Steps in the Precision Machining Process

From selecting the right tool paths to the final cut, each phase requires high-precision removal. Different methods and equipment come into play, ensuring that the end result meets the stringent standards set by the customer.

  • Machining Strategy Planning: With a comprehensive understanding of the materials and design, machinists develop a meticulous machining strategy. This plan outlines the sequence of operations, the choice of cutting tools, and the specific machining techniques to be employed. Factors such as the type of machining (turning, milling, grinding), tool path optimization, and work holding methods are considered at this stage to ensure efficiency and precision.
  • Print Analysis: Once the materials are identified, machinists thoroughly analyze engineering prints and digital models of the components to be machined. This analysis includes a detailed examination of the radii, depth of cut, tolerances, and surface finishes specified in the design. Understanding the intricacies of the part or component is crucial for planning the machining strategy and achieving the desired outcome cost-effectively.
  • Parts & Components Preparation: Preparing the part or component is a critical step in the precision machining process. This involves securing the material in the machining center or lathe, ensuring it is firmly held in place to withstand the forces exerted during machining. Proper preparation is essential to prevent vibrations, distortions, or misalignments that could compromise the accuracy of the final product.
  • Quality Control and Inspection: At multiple points throughout the machining process, quality control and rigorous inspection procedures take place. Machinists use precision measurement tools such as calipers, micrometers, and coordinate measuring machines (CMM) to verify that the dimensions and tolerances meet or exceed the design specifications.
  • Surface Finishing: Achieving the desired surface finish is crucial for both functionality and aesthetics. Depending on the application and visibility, additional operations such as grinding, polishing, or coating may be employed to enhance the surface properties of the machined component.
  • Final Inspection and Quality Assurance: Before the precision-machined component leaves our plant, it has gone through a rigorous inspection process to ensure that the customer's specifications have been met.

Materials Fit For Precision

Metals, including aluminum, stainless steel, and titanium, are commonly chosen for precision machining due to their inherent strength, weight, durability, and thermal conductivity. These materials withstand the cutting forces exerted during machining while maintaining dimensional stability.

On the other hand, plastics, such as nylon, Delrin, or PEEK, offer a different set of advantages in precision machining. These materials are valued for their lightweight nature, corrosion resistance, and versatility in achieving intricate designs. However, machinists must navigate challenges such as managing heat buildup during the machining process to prevent material deformation.

Get in Touch With Omni

Experience the efficiency of Omni's CNC precision machining in West Michigan, where precision meets productivity. Our CNC technology boosts output while allowing our experts to tackle detailed designs with ease. Essential for local industries, Omni's machining supports the aerospace sector with key safety components, and the medical field with pinpoint-accurate devices, and contributes to automotive, electronics, and defense through seamless component integration. For precise manufacturing solutions tailored to West Michigan, choose Omni's CNC expertise.

back to all blog Posts

Stay up to date

Enter your email address