Why Is Aluminum Ideal for CNC Machining?
Aluminum is one of the most commonly used materials in CNC machining operations. It provides unique benefits that make CNC machining easier and the production of parts and products more cost-efficient. Aluminum has excellent machinability, which makes it an ideal fit for maximizing the benefits of CNC machining. At JBC Machine, we offer custom machining services for aluminum that can serve the needs of various industrial applications.
Easy to Machine
Although it is about one-third as dense as steel, aluminum is still a strong metal. It also has solid dimensional stability. These features help make it ideal for the cutting and shaping operations of a CNC machine, while still preserving its residual stress. The lower density of aluminum helps ensure it will not warp or deform under cutting operations. This allows the production of prototypes to higher tolerances. Many aluminum grades are easily penetrated and cut by CNC cutting machines. Aluminum alloy may often be machined at a speed of at least three times that of steel, depending on the specific aluminum alloy.
Excellent Finishing Options
Aluminum may be surface-finished in multiple ways. Modern coolants and carbide tooling may be used to create a smooth uniform surface finish. Aluminum can also be bead blasted to produce a matte finish. Many different surface coatings are available including by painting and anodizing to achieve the ideal, custom appearance. Anodization of aluminum will create a uniform aesthetic finish and also add corrosion resistance to the metal.
Resistant to Low Temperatures
One of the strengths of aluminum is that it resists low temperatures very well. Compared to steel which can be sensitive and delicate in welding locations under low-temperature conditions, aluminum is machined easily under low temperatures.
Quicker Turn-Around Times
Since aluminum is easy to cut, it takes less time to produce parts than other metals such as steel or copper. Aluminum is a beneficial choice if the application allows it and rapid turnaround is required.
Less Expensive to Machine Than Other Metals
Since aluminum can be machined faster than other metals and often does not require additional finishes, it costs less to machine than other metals.