When most people think of precision CNC machining of metals, they may think of steel, copper, titanium, and if you still don’t know how to work in CNC aluminum, now get some new knowledge of it aluminum materials are now commonly used in CNC machining, with various characteristics of lightweight and softness. Easy to handle, maneuverable and durable. It is also non-ferrous and non-flammable. Aluminum CNC machining parts are easy to achieve high precision due to their softness and ease of processing. When you choose your aluminum to be CNC machined, there are a few things you should know.

Aluminum Grade

The final choice of the type of aluminum grade you intend to use depends on your processing project, which allows you to rank each grade from the most important to the least important according to its characteristics. Following this, you will know how to choose aluminum with specific properties that will accord with your needs.

The following are some types with specific features about the Aluminum grade;

Aluminum 6061: This grade is excellent both in mechanical properties and weldability. Its external performance makes it one of the most squeezed grades. This is because of its good toughness, medium-to-high strength, excellent corrosion resistance under harsh conditions, cold anodization, and bending workability. Aluminum 6061 is often used for five-axis CNC machining.

Aluminum 7075: It is commonly used, although unlike 6061, this grade is known for its extraordinary fatigue strength. This aluminum grade is not suitable for farming; it is relatively expensive. Therefore, it is better for hard parts, such as fuselage, bicycle parts, rock climbing kits, and airplane wings. This alloy also has better corrosion resistance.

Aluminum 2024: This alloy is mainly used in the military and aerospace fields. This is because of its mechanical properties, such as high wear resistance and high strength. Aluminum 2024 has poor corrosion resistance and cannot be welded.

To know more types of CNC aluminum check on JTR CNC.

CNC Aluminum Prototype

Aluminum machined prototypes are usually produced based on various alloys. The most used alloy is 6061-T6, which is suitable for electronics, transportation, aerospace, and military industries.

Aluminum alloy has low density but high strength. Usually, CNC aluminum prototype machining has huge tolerance control even 0.01MM. CNC aluminum prototypes can manufacture custom unique and quality aluminum prototypes. CNC milling is a perfect choice. Its advantage lies in the machining process, and that is high-precision aluminum milling.

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How to avoid undesirable deformation in CNC aluminum machining?

Aluminum is an important industrial material, but it has a major disadvantage. The alloy has low hardness, high thermal expansion rate, and can be deformed when processed into thin parts. While there are several ways to avoid material deformation.

Symmetrical Machining

The key is to avoid the extreme concentration of heat, rather than the loss of manufacturing heat, to reduce the thermal deformation rate.

Stratified Multiple Machining

If there are several cavities on the aluminum alloy plate, it is easy to twist one cavity wall due to the force distribution. To avoid this, you should treat all cavities at the same time.

Get an Appropriate Cutting Parameter

The biggest influence on cutting parameters is the depth of cutting back. Maintain efficiency and reduce the number of cuts. CNC milling can solve this problem by increasing the speed of the machine tool and reducing the cutting force.

Drilling and Milling

When the milling cutter is applied to the cavity and parts, the cutting amount is sufficient. Lead to cutting heat, expansion and deformation. The best way to avoid this problem is to pre-drill with a tool larger than the milling cutter, and then put the milling cutter and the milling cutter together.

5 Axis CNC Machining

In five-axis machining, the CNC system moves while cutting five-axis angles at the same time. This machining process is fast and reliable for designing complex parts because the work is close to multiple directions.

The reasons why five-axis machining is widely adopted are as follows:

The setting is single, which reduces delivery time and improves efficiency

Because it can avoid collision with the tool holder and tilt the worktable or cutting tool, it has a better geometric shape.

Shorter and more rigid tools can be used, and some have higher spindle speeds. This is achieved by reducing the load on the tools.

The workpiece does not pass through different stations, thereby reducing errors, maintaining accuracy and ensuring quality.

Benefits of Aluminum CNC Machining Parts 

The benefits of aluminum are easy to find: the wonderful cutting process, the best quality and the demand for machined aluminum products are on the rise. There are many experts in the industry to meet your needs, please remember to do your research and look for samples to ensure the quality of CNC aluminum.

As we have summarized, you now know various CNC machining aluminum processes (milling, drilling, turning), and the unfinished aluminum block becomes a complete product through it. This is an arduous process that requires experience, accuracy and powerful machines. Moreover, these are all because of the different aluminum alloys used.