Rapid CNC Machining Services
At Star Rapid, we use advanced equipment to offer you a variety of CNC machining services including milling, turning, EDM, wire EDM, surface grinding and much more. Using our imported 3, 4 and 5-axis CNC machining centers, our skilled machinists can make turned and milled parts using a wide range of plastic and metal materials. Our CNC machining abilities also complement our 3D metal printing service making us a great one-stop-shop for your advanced designs. Learn more about how we combine additive and subtractive manufacturing through our AddSub® service.
What Is CNC Machining?
CNC machining is a subtractive manufacturing process where raw material is removed with a variety of precision cutting tools to make a part or product. Advanced software is used to control the equipment according to the specification of your 3D design. Our team of engineers and machinists program the equipment to optimize cutting time, surface finish and final tolerance to meet your specifications. We use CNC machining not only to manufacture parts and prototypes but also to make mold tools, which can be used for our plastic injection molding or pressure die casting services.
Curious as to how a CNC machine works? Interact with our diagram below to learn more about each part of the CNC machine and what function it performs.
Advantages Of CNC Machining
CNC machining is great to meet a range of your product development needs. Here are some of the benefits of precision machining:
- Quick removal of large amounts of metal material
- Highly accurate and repeatable
- Suitable for many different kinds of substrates
- Scalable volumes from one to 100,000
- Low investment in tooling and preparation costs
- Fast turnaround
CNC Machining Video | Star Rapid
EDM / Wire EDM And Surface Grinding
EDM (electrical discharge machining) is a method for cutting holes, pockets and other shapes into hardened steel, as well as imparting a surface texture to the internal cavities of mold tools. A sacrificial electrode in an electrolyte bath discharges a high-powered electric spark to erode very hard materials that would be difficult or impossible to do with any other method. Square pocket holes are often created with this method. With wire EDM, a wire is continuously fed between two spools. When electrically charged, it’s able to cut through hardened tool steels quickly and accurately.
At Star, we also offer surface grinding services. When surface grinding, the workpiece is held stationary on a horizontal plate. The surface grinding wheel is computer controlled to abrade the workpiece to a precise depth.
Our general tolerances for CNC machining of metals is DIN-2768-1-fine and for plastics, DIN-2768-1-medium. Tolerances are greatly affected by part geometry and type of material. Our project managers will consult with you on every part of your project and will seek to provide the highest degree of precision possible.
We work with a wide range of plastic and metal materials including magnesium, steel, aluminum, brass and titanium to make tooling for plastic injection molding and pressure die casting or to make parts for rapid prototypes and low-volume production. In addition to our stock list, we can provide you with customized raw material as required.
We make hard tooling (cores and cavities) from a variety of materials to suit your budget, order volume and schedule. We routinely make production-quality tools from P20, NAK80, S136 stainless and H13 semi-hardened steel for volumes up to 100,000 pieces. Specialty metals can also be ordered on request. Learn more about our rapid tooling service.
CNC Machining Quickfacts
Why choose CNC machining?
CNC machining is a fast, accurate and versatile solution for making production-quality parts in any quantity, without the need for investing in hard tooling or expensive set-ups.
What raw materials can I use with CNC machining?
Finished parts can be made from many types of easily available stock metals including mild and stainless steel, aluminum, brass, copper, magnesium and titanium. We can also machine rigid plastics. Check out our list of frequently used materials.
What tolerances can I achieve with CNC machining?
We routinely produce parts to .05 microns, which is suitable for the majority of commercial and industrial applications. Closer tolerances are only advised for critical applications – they will take longer to produce and will increase processing costs.
CNC Machining: Further Reading
In our wholly-owned manufacturing facility located in China, Star Rapid is committed to offering world-class levels of quality and reliability with our CNC machining services. We set ourselves apart with foreign-trained machinists under European management, advanced equipment and sophisticated Gühring cutting tools. We make rapid prototypes, rapid tooling and low-volume production parts in a variety of metals and plastics. Get an introduction to our CNC milling services in China in this short guide. Read more…
CNC machining is highly versatile and can be used to make complex parts in a wide variety of solid materials. Determining which one is best for you involves considering several related factors, including price, workability, corrosion resistance, strength, weight and appearance. Our CNC machining services team has put together this guide on the advantages and applications for the most common types of metals we use every day to make rapid prototypes and low volume production parts. Read more…
Star Rapid’s pursuit of better CNC machining services never stops. Committed to the highest standards of quality and driven to innovate within our industry, we’ve developed a number of patented solutions for different parts of the CNC machining process. With 21 registered patents and eight more in the works, we are a registered high-tech enterprise and an excellent choice for your CNC machining needs. In this post, learn more about some of our most important innovations — including our pneumatic holding fixture, automatic indexing fixture, a fixture for spherical parts and more — to discover how they benefit our CNC machining services. Read more…
Star Rapid has partnered with German toolmaker Gühring to be our exclusive supplier of cutting tools and end mills. An industry leader, Gühring applies proprietary, vacuum-deposited thin film coatings to their tools. These coatings have been proven through extensive testing to offer a number of benefits. These include increased tear resistance, heat resistance, improved lubrication and hardness, all of which improve the durability of these tools and the quality of the parts they make. Read this post to learn more about this technology and why we use Gühring tools for our CNC machining services. Read more…
See Our Past Projects
Drones have quickly become one of the most versatile tech solutions for businesses across a handful of industries. One of those industries is agriculture, where drones can be used to collect data and even aid in planting new crops. We worked with MicaSense, an agricultural tech company, to build an enclosure for Altum, the company’s new agricultural drone sensor. To ensure maximum durability in any outdoor environment, our CNC machine division created a three-part design and milled the enclosure from aluminum 6061 with a T6 temper. To protect against corrosion and maximize aesthetic appeal, we added a clear alodine coating to some parts and color-anodized others. Learn more about our production process for Altum in this case study.
Who says you can’t drink wine in the wild? Glass on the Grass is an innovative coaster designed to slip over the base of a wine glass and provide stable support on flat, uneven surfaces. Working with designers at Breathe Create, our team created a set of prototypes using multi-axis CNC machine centers and clear acrylic plastic. We then worked closely with Threedom, a well-known design firm, to fine-tune our injection mold tools for manufacturing. After intensive tool preparation and testing phases, we created a set of production-ready plastic injection mold tools for export. Read this case study for a step-by-step guide on how we used CNC machining services to create Glass on the Grass.
Getting the perfect putting stroke is just about practice. It’s also about finding the right product. After all, every stroke is slightly unique—shouldn’t every putter be the same way? That’s the central idea behind the Custom Putter by CMBD, an industry-leading product development company. Each Custom Putter is designed to fit a specific player’s dimensions and stroke style. As such, the Custom Putter has a number of interchangeable parts that are combined to create a custom fit. When CMBD approached our team to CNC machine the club’s parts, we used a precision multi-axis process to fabricate each part from high-quality Japanese D2 tool steel. Read up on our process and see the results in this case study.
Robotic exoskeletons are showing tremendous promise as assistive devices in healthcare, security, and manufacturing fields. The Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC), a not-for-profit research institute, is currently developing several robotic exoskeleton solutions as part of its Exoskeleton Project. Our team worked with IHMC to develop parts for the Mina v2, a powered robotic exoskeleton designed to provide assisted mobility to people with a physical disability. Our CNC machining services division handled the project, creating the most complex parts on our 5-axis CNC mill. After the primary CNC machine work, we bead-blasted, cleaned, and anodized all aluminum parts for extra corrosion- and scratch-resistance. Learn more about our process and check out the finished Mina v2 when you read this case study.
With a range of finishing services to choose from and guaranteed quality thanks to our inspection services you can trust you will receive great parts every time. Once you send us your 3D CAD file, one of our customer service engineers will check your design for manufacturability to ensure that the part can be made to your expectations and budget requirements. Contact us today for a free quote!