5 Types of CNC Machine: Meeting the Most Popular One!

If you have connections to metal detaching, shaping and fabrication industry, then you’ve probably heard about CNC.

This technology has made things quite simpler by providing various facilities. There are quite a few types of CNC machine available today. I’ll be talking about the most popular versions.

5 Types of CNC Machine

Multiple Types of CNC Machine: The Most Popular Version?

There are quite a few types when the bet is about CNC. However, I want to include the most used and commonly known ones here.

Also, there will be a section on a special type of CNC machine. It has bought revolutionary benefits to professionals.

What is CNC Machine?

Computer numerical controls is the full form of this short term, CNC. The concept includes operation of engineers and operators. They simply use the technology to command manufacturing equipment through a language.

This language is the g-code. With the help of a CNC machine, one can make this process work. It’s useful for multiple manufacturing chores. The most common ones are:

 Nstruction for proper grinding.
Commanding the shaping process.
Source material molding procedures.
Performing melting tasks.
Cutting various elements such as metal or plastic.
Turning material into a usable tool or apparatus.

5 Types of CNC Machine

There are several types that exist in today’s industry. I’ll focus on the most common five types. These are prominent because of their versatile usability and application. Each of these five types come with the retrofitted or custom-built design. Also, they carry their own advantages.

#1. Milling Machine

These are far popular than the other type and performs accurate milling. You can handle various workpieces with CNC milling machines. It can perform slicing, cutting and shaving.

Manual functioning is way less accurate than the milling machine’s result. It can use different direction, angle, and depth for cutting a particular piece.

There are usually two types of milling machines. One uses a three-axis direction for operation. The other type uses rotary dimensions including four-axis cutting ability. The linear capability of later type allows for arc cuts as well.

#2. Drilling Machine

Making precise holes into materials, especially thick ones are never too easy. When you try manually, the pain of not getting a clean and sharp hole will hardly go away.

The manufacturing industry uses one brilliant invention for this purpose. It is known as CNC drilling machine. It simply helps to achieve the perfect hole making position no matter what material.

Peck is a well-known method to try for thick materials using CNC drilling technology. This is a stepwise procedure to get accurate holes.

Also, there are drilling bits and cutting tools mounted in a turret. This is a regular design of a turret drilling machine. The automation support will always be better at safety. Also, it helps with indexing accurately for proper drilling compared to manual ways.

#3. Lathes

CNC lathes are another technology that helps to rotate a material on a spindle. This helps to get any material spinning with high speed.

So that the workpiece can be shaped and formed into desired design. For most symmetrical objects, CNC lathes are widely used. Especially the ones with cylinder, sphere, and conic shapes.

#4. Plasma Cutters

To cut a sheet metal a unique CNC technology with plasma torch is available. This is commonly known as plasma cutters. For two dimensional shapes, CNC plasma cutters are the best options to try.

#5. Grinders

CNC grinding comes with a spinning wheel as the base design. This spinning wheel helps to abrade a particular working material. So that it could achieve a certain shape with proper grinding or grating.

Grinders are quite easy to program compared to milling machines. They are also convenient to set up than lathes. However, CNC grinders are not suitable for the most precision cutting needs.

Breaking Down the Most Popular Type

The milling machine is probably the most popular one out there used in manufacturing industry. This is due to a number of advantages that this amazing apparatus brings along. It can effortlessly drill and cut without making any mistakes.

The milling machine also comes with a cylindrical cutting tool for rotation like CNC drilling. However, it comes with the superpower of moving along multiple axes. This is not possible with regular CNC drilling machines.

That’s why it’s so much more preferable to professionals.

How to Operate CNC Milling Machine?

There are three to five axes usable for a CNC milling Machine.

Using a high-level language of complex milling one can easily increase performance. This is known as CAM or Computer-Aided Manufacturing Programming.

A program needs to ready for the milling machine. Next, it is simply fed into the controller through normal keyboard. Usually, a computer is the one that acts as a controller.

Once the program is stored inside controller, it needs certain tweaking. Different coding parts are added or erased depending on operation type. This is usually varying according to the product type.

That’s how a CNC milling machine usually operates.

Advantages of CNC Milling Machine:

  • You don’ have to worry about switching it off or on.
  • With a CNC milling machine, prototyping and fabrication works are easier to do with less cost.
  • Regular maintenance will bring productivity increases.
  • Reproduction accuracy is very high.
  • You can create thousands of pieces with one original design.
  • Materials are less wasted compared to manual working.
  • Lots of training is available to learn using the CNC milling machine effortlessly.
  • You just need to replace cutting tools and the rest are automatic with it.

Disadvantages of CNC Milling Machine:

  • These machines are pretty much expensive than conventional and manual style devices.
  • Anybody from the non-engineering background will have difficulty adjusting with this milling machine. It needs basic math understanding. So proper training is a must.


So, CNC is a huge area to walk around and learn about. I have so much more to talk about. But let me save that for another day.

In maximum countries, students are learning more on a CNC milling machine, which is really great. Traditional machines such as manual drilling or lathes are not competent enough. Especially to complete production in less time.

So, for better accuracy, faster speed, less labor, and increased production, a CNC milling machine is the most appropriate option.

In the manufacturing industry, people are already hooked with using these. As an heir of the electrical background, make sure to learn more precisely about this amazing machine. Till Then Have A Great Time with Technology!