CNC Milling Machine Operation

Everything you need to Know about CNC Milling Machining Operations


CNC milling machining is a process that produces high quality and high durability parts for prototypes, one-off and smaller production runs. Some of the most common parts produced using CNC milling machines include slots, chamfers and threads.

However, before you jump into the world of CNC milling machining Malaysia, you need to understand the different types of operations that can be performed by such machines. The most common operations include the following:
Face Milling

This is the simplest operation to understand. Face milling refers to when the milling tool’s axis is completely perpendicular to the workpiece’s surface. Face milling cutters have teeth on their periphery and face. The periphery teeth are used for cutting, while the face teeth are used for finishing. Face milling is further divided into end milling and side milling.

The face milling operation is used to create flat surfaces and contours on the finished product. Face milling is known for creating the highest quality end result.
Plain Milling

Also known as surface or slab milling, plain milling refers to when the axis of the tool is parallel to the surface of the workpiece. Like face milling cutters, plain milling cutters also have teeth on the periphery which are used for cutting. These cutters can be narrow or wide. Narrow cutters are used to cut deeper, while wide cutters are used to cut larger surfaces. The machine operator can also go from using coarser toothed cutters to finer ones to control how detailed the final product ends up being.
Angular Milling

Also known as angle milling, angular milling refers to when the tool’s axis is at an angle with regards to the surface of the workpiece. This operation is somewhat more complex because it involves the use of single angle milling cutters that produce angular features on the workpiece. Features that can be milled include grooves, chamfers and more commonly – dovetails. The tool needs to be angled based on the design.
Form Milling

Form milling is when there are irregular surfaces involved in the milling of the workpiece. Form milling can handle curved and combination surfaces using milling or fly cutters. These cutters include concave, convex and corner rounding cutters that can create contours, beads, cavities and other complicated or detailed designs.
Other (Less Common) Operations


Some of the other operations that are less commonly used and more complex than the ones that have been mentioned include the following:
Straddle Milling
Straddle milling is when a single cut is used to create two or more parallel surfaces on the workpiece.

Gang Milling
Gang milling refers to the use of two or more cutters on the same machine arbor for the same or different cutting operations. This operation can be used to create intricate details on the workpiece.

Profile Milling
Profile milling is used to cut a path along a vertical or angled part of the workpiece.

Gear Cutting
Gear cutting involves using involute gear cutters to produce gear teeth.