CNC turning And Swiss turning, Which Is Better?

CNC turning And Swiss turning, Which Is Better?

Understanding the differences between various CNC machining operations is important for every individual working in a machine shop. In this article, we will discuss the differences between CNC turning and Swiss turning. Some of the features and applications of both processes are also described in this article. The working principle and advantages of using CNC turning and Swiss turning are also discussed below.

DEK machining and manufacturing company is one of the renowned manufacturers in developing prototypes and various custom machined parts. After going through this article, one is able to make a choice between both of these processes.

Differences between CNC turning and Swiss turning

Both of these machining processes use a cutting tool to remove material from the workpiece by spinning it at high speed. Some of the differences between both processes and their applications are discussed below.

CNC turning

CNC Turning

In CNC turning, the workpiece rotates at high speed in a fixed position and a cutting tool moves along the workpiece to remove the excessive material. The cutting tool is typically driven in the X and Z axes by the servo-controlled motors. CNC machine provides smooth operation with extreme precision and accuracy.

A sharp-edged single point cutting tool is used to perform the turning operation. The speed and feed rate of the machine depend upon the nature of the workpiece. While machining hard materials a coolant is required to maintain the temperature at the cutting place.

Features and Applications:

Some of the features and applications of CNC turning are;

  • The major applications of CNC turning are forging, casting, and bar stocks.
  • It provides excellent repeatability with high precision in mass production.
  • It provides good surface quality of the machined product.
  • The fixture can hold up to 40 parts.
  • It is used to produce parts with external slots, threads, and tapers.
  • It is mainly used to produce round and cylindrical parts.

CNC Swiss turning

CNC Swiss turning

CNC Swiss turning is performed by feeding bar stock through a guide bushing. It supports the material during machining operations. In order to gain high precision, the material should be held firmly. CNC Swiss machines also known as Swiss-type lathes are mainly used to perform Swiss turning operations. It is used to develop small parts with high accuracy.

In conventional CNC turning, the workpiece rotates in a fixed position and held tightly from one or both ends. On the other hand, in CNC Swiss turning the workpiece can turn and move along the Z-axis during the cutting operation. Multiple operations can be performed at the same time, on a single machine.

Features and Applications:

Some of the typical applications and features of CNC Swiss turning are;

  • It is used to produce small machine parts with extreme precision and accuracy.
  • Complex geometries can be machined easily on CNC Swiss machines.
  • Allow multiple operations at the same time.
  • Both low-volume production and mass production can be done through Swiss machining.
  • It can perform several machining operations including turning, milling, drilling, boring, etc.
  • Swiss machining is mainly used to develop medical and defense products.
  • It also assists in manufacturing watch parts and shafts.

How do they work?

As we know, the working principle of both of the machining operations is different from each other. A complete guide on how to perform both operations in a machine shop is as below.

CNC turning

CNC Turning-2

In CNC turning the workpiece rotates around a fixed position at high speed and the cutting tool moves along the workpiece. The tool removes material from the workpiece to produce the desired shape. In order to provide high accuracy and repeatability, the machine operates in closed-loop control mode.

The machining parameters depend upon the nature of the material, tool characteristics, depth of cut, and finishing requirements.

CNC Swiss turning

CNC Swiss turning-2

This process is mainly used to develop economical and sustainable machine parts for various industrial applications. While performing CNC Swiss turning, the workpiece moves along the Z-axis to perform a cutting operation whereas, the tool held stationary.

The bar stock material is placed in the machine and advanced through a guide bushing. To avoid deflection, the bar stock should be clamped firmly and only the area of the workpiece to be machined is exposed.

Some of the important parameters of both CNC turning and Swiss turning operations are;

  • Spindle Speed (mostly in case of CNC turning)
  • Diameter of the workpiece
  • Cutting Speed
  • Depth of cut
  • Feed rate
  • Cutting geometry

Advantages of CNC turning and CNC Swiss turning

CNC turning

Some of the advantages of performing CNC turning are;

  • It is suitable to machine short and large diameter parts with high tolerances.
  • It is also used to machine large parts with complex material properties.
  • It helps in enhancing production efficiency.
  • It reduces the clamping times and provides high operational stability.
  • CNC turning reduces the production cost due to its computerized numerical control operation and it eliminates the chances of human error.
  • Due to its high repeatability and mass production capability, it reduces the floor space as a single machine can produce a large number of products within a limited period of time.
  • While operating at a constant speed, the machine provides excellent surface quality of the final product.
  • CNC turning machine can also perform several other operations like facing, milling, threading, etc.

CNC Swiss turning

Some of the advantages of using CNC Swiss turning are as followed;

  • Swiss turning ensure precision with extremely high tolerances.
  • It can easily machine complex geometries with accuracy which may not be possible on other machines.
  • The cycle time for Swiss machines is low as compare to other machines. If a conventional machine takes an hour to machine a single part, the Swiss machine can produce up to 30 parts within an hour. Cycle time also depends upon the complexity and size of the part.
  • Parts developed by Swiss turning do not require any additional finishing operation. It eliminates the requirement of secondary operations and the machined parts are ready to deliver.
  • It can machine long parts with small diameter requirements under 0.750 inches.
  • It reduces the lead time by performing several operations at the same time.

Which process should I use?

Above we have discussed some of the most important features of CNC turning and CNC Swiss turning. The process selection depends upon the design and machining requirements. If you need to machine a high volume of small parts and cylindrical pieces with high tolerances, then you should choose CNC Swiss machining. It will help you in developing high-quality economical parts in minimum lead time.

On the other hand, if you need high repeatability, versatility, and rapid manufacturing then you should go with CNC turning. It can handle materials with complex mechanical properties. The process selection depends upon the complexity of the parts, the nature of the material, and several other machine parameters.

In today’s world CNC Swiss turning will be the best choice to manufacture cost-effective small complex parts. DEK machining and manufacturing company provides services in developing high-quality custom parts through both CNC turning and CNC Swiss turning operations.

Conclusion

In the above article, we concluded that both CNC turning and CNC Swiss turning have their own working conditions. Both are different in their features but CNC Swiss turning is the modern technique to perform turning operations. It is widely used by manufacturers to perform complex machining operations which would not be performed on other machines.

If you are looking for CNC machining and manufacturing services in your area then DEK should be your first choice. We manufacture economical and sustainable custom products for our clients. We also provide machining services to our customers. Place your order today at DEK machining and manufacturing company and if you need any technical support then you can also contact our engineers or customer support team.

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About the Author

Austin Peng, Co-founder of DEK, specializes in CNC machining, 3D printing, urethane casting, rapid tooling, injection molding, metal casting, sheet metal, and extrusion.

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