Learn the Differences and Capabilities of CNC Woodworking Machines
In most cases, CNC machines are able to carry out the following three fundamental operations: drilling holes into, routing patterns onto the face of, and cutting straight or curved pieces from flat wood-based sheets. This essay will focus on the two primary classes of machines that can carry out these tasks.
The use of CNC Machining Centers
Machining centers controlled by a computer are often referred to as pod and rail or point-to-point machines. These machines are fairly advanced. These machines’ primary purpose is to bore holes in horizontal and vertical planes into flat wood panels that have already been trimmed to size. A great number of point-to-point machines use drill bits to perform routing onto the face of the panels as well. Nevertheless, the most important purpose is to normally bore holes. During the process of drilling, the pre-sized wood panels are placed on movable pods and are held in place either by a vacuum that runs through the pods or by mechanical clamping, particularly for the smaller components. CNC machining centers often include two or more working zones, which allow for multi-zone drilling and routing to be performed.
Some of the most well-known manufacturers of CNC machining centers include Biesse, Busellato, Holz-Her, Homag, Masterwood, Morbidelli, SCMI, Unitech, and Weeke.
Pod and rail machines are frequently used in bigger production processing operations because they are able to attain a higher throughput than the smaller nesting type machines that are typically used in these kinds of settings.
Routers Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC)
CNC routers are a more frequent term to use when referring to this type of machine. The primary purpose of these machines is to shape panels, also known as routing, and to create a variety of pieces using panels as their raw material. In most cases, the panels are constructed from sheets of solid wood, composite wood, plastic, or metals that are not ferrous.
Mechanical clamps or vacuum suction are used to secure the panels to be routed to the machining table while the routing process is performed. In most cases, routers can support either one or two working tables. They are able to run as many as four separate router heads on the same machine at the same time. These devices are computer controlled and can work along two to five axes, however the most typical design uses only three axes. Although routing is their primary function, most routers also have the capability of drilling.
The term “nesting” refers to the secondary procedure that is used to make pieces from bigger panels. The nesting process is used to optimize the manufacturing of the parts in order to generate the best potential yields from the flat panel sheets that are provided. The use of CNC machines for nesting is common in smaller workplaces for one of two reasons: 1) to eliminate the need for a panel saw, or 2) for smaller, more customized jobs in which the benefits of a panel beam saw are not realized.
Some of the most well-known manufacturers of CNC routers include Andi, Biesse, Busellato, Cam Tech, CMS, KOMO, Morbidelli, Omnitech, SCM, Shoda, Thermwood, and Weeke.