4-Axis and 5-Axis CNC Machining Basics

Advantages of CNC machining

Compared with traditional manual machining, CNC machining speed is much faster.

As long as the computer code is correct and meets the design, the dimensional accuracy of the finished product is high and the error is small.

CNC manufacturing is an ideal rapid prototyping manufacturing method.

It can also be used to manufacture end-use products and components, but is generally cost-effective only in short-term production runs in small batches.

Multi axis CNC machining

CNC milling involves the removal of material using rotary tools.

Either the workpiece remains stationary and the tool moves onto the workpiece, or the workpiece enters the machine tool at a predetermined angle.

The more moving axes a machine has, the more complex the forming process is and the faster the speed is.

In 4-axis CNC milling, the fourth axis is added to the motion of the cutting tool, allowing rotation around the X axis.

There are now four axes – the x-axis, the y-axis, the z-axis, and the a-axis (rotating around the x-axis).

Most four axis CNC machines also allow the workpiece to rotate, which is the so-called b-axis, so that the machine can act as both a milling machine and a lathe.

Characteristics of four axis linkage machining

1. 4-axis definition: there are at least four coordinates on a machine tool, which are three linear coordinates and one rotational coordinate.

2. 4-axis machining features:

(1) The 3-axis machine tool cannot process or needs to be clamped for too long;

(2) Improve the accuracy, quality and effectiveness of free space surfaces.

4-axis advantages:

(1) The tools have been greatly improved;

(2) Processing technology: shorten clamping time;

(3) No clamps required;

(4) Improve surface quality;

(5) Extend tool life;

(6) Centralized production;

(7) Effectively improve processing efficiency and production efficiency

5-axis machining:

Above the 4-axes is another axis of rotation, usually 360 ° in the vertical plane.

The 5- axes can be completely processed and clamped at one time, which can reduce the clamping cost and product scratch.

It is suitable for processing some multi station holes and planes, as well as parts with high machining accuracy, especially parts with strict requirements for mold machining accuracy.

In the process of moving along the whole path, the tool direction can be optimized, and the tool can move linearly.

In this way, the optimal cutting state can be maintained over the entire path.

What is the meaning of 4-axis linkage and 5-axis linkage of machining center?

4-axis linkage and 5-axis linkage generally refer to the number of linkage control axes of the control system of a machining center, CNC milling machine or engraving machine.

4-axis linkage first requires four controllable axes, and the 4-axes can be controlled by interpolation motion at the same time, that is, the 4-axes can be controlled by simultaneous linkage.

The motion speed at the time of simultaneous linkage is the synthetic speed, not the respective motion control.

It is the simultaneous movement of one point in space through four axes to another point in space, from the start point to the end point, and then stops at the same time.

The motion speed of each axis in the middle is internally synthesized to the speed of each axis according to the programmed speed through the motion interpolation algorithm of the controller.

For a 4-axis machining center, that is, the X, Y and Z axes plus a rotation axis A (it can also be the B axis or the C axis.)

The definitions of the A, B and C axes correspond to the axes rotating around the x, y and z axes respectively.

Generally, the 4-axis is the a axis whose axis rotates around the X axis or the B axis whose axis rotates around the Y axis.

This depends on the installation position and form of the 4-axis on the actual machine tool), and the 4-axis can not only move alone but also be linked with another axis or two axes or the four axes at the same time.

Some machine tools have 4-axes, but they can only move independently and only serve as indexing axes, that is, after rotating to an angle, they stop and lock this axis and do not participate in cutting.

They only serve as indexing, which can only be called four axis three linkage.

Similarly, the total number of axes of a 4-axis linkage machine tool can be more than four, and it can have five or more axes, but its maximum number of linkage axes is four.

The same is true of 5-axis linkage machine tools.

However, 5-axis linkage machine tools are much more complex than 4-axis linkage and 3-axis linkage.

Moreover, at present, some CNC systems in China say that they are five axes, but in fact some are fake five axes.

The real 5- axis linkage system has RTCP function.

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