How much does it cost to CNC aluminum?

Mosi Li
Mosi Li

Director Project Engineer at 3Q Machining - China top CNC Machining Custom Part Manufacturer

Can Titanium Be CNC Machined?

How much does CNC Machining cost? The important thing you should know;

When you need to create a prototype sample or make hundreds of custom parts with CNC Machining, you should need to know How Much does cnc machining cost? and what can affect the cost?

In this situation, you are in right place here that we 3Q Machining can help you to find out the important thing you should know about CNC Machining prices costs.

Plastic: ABS, PC, ABS+PC, PP, PS, POM, PMMA (Acrylic), PAGF30, PCGF30, Teflon, DHPE, HDPE, PPS, PEEK. 

Metal: Aluminum, Steel, Stainless Steel (17-4, Inconel 625 & 718), Magnesium, Titanium, Zinc, Brass, Bronze, Copper. 

These are the most common materials for CNC prototyping and production parts. Besides that, we can work with any type of machinable plastic and metal we can purchase from the stock market. 

What’s more: We are able to create a custom plastic block or bar for the material such as PA GF50, PPS GF50. To discover further plastic materials we can do, please contact our team.

CNC machining starts with a computer, on which designers prepare a part using CAD (Computer-aided Design) software. This digital part is then converted into a format that can be recognized by a CNC machine.

Instructions are sent to the CNC machine in the form of  “G-Code” after which the machine can start cutting.

Most CNC machines have a “worktable” and work holding device to keep a block of material — known as the “workpiece” — in place. The worktable may or may not move, depending on the style of the machine.

When machining starts, the cutting tool makes contact with the workpiece, cutting away layers of material. The tool and/or workpiece is moved and/or rapidly rotated according to the G-Code instructions so that cuts are made in exactly the right places until the part is finished.

CNC machining is a fast, accurate and versatile solution for making end-use plastic and metal parts in any quantity, without the need for investing in hard tooling or expensive set-ups. No matter how simple or complex the parts.

Color: Pantone Number

Logo: AI

Drawing: DWG/STP/IGS/SOLIDWORKS etc.

Sample lead time: 7days

Tooling lead time: 35 days

Production lead time: 7~30days

Usually we book the shipment with your appointed forwarder, or can ship to your warehouse with our shipment company

We also working with DHL/FEDEX/UPS for  long term relationship to have competitive express shipment with fast delivery.

As-Machined: The most popular and cost efficient way for inner functional components. Fine and even tool path is also good for aspect parts.

Bead Blasted: The part is left with a matt appearance. Range of 120 to 320 beads allows us to create different roughness to the surface.

Anodized: Type II creates a corrosion-resistant finish. Parts can be anodized in different colors—clear, black, red, and blue are most common—and is usually associated with low silicone element series of aluminum. Type III is thicker and creates a wear-resistant layer in addition to the corrosion resistance seen with Type II.

Powder Coat: This is a process where powdered paint is sprayed onto a part which is then baked in an oven. This creates a strong, wear- and corrosion-resistant layer that is more durable than standard painting methods. A wide variety of colors are available to create the desired aesthetic.

CNC machines include CNC mills, CNC turning machines (or lathes), CNC routers, and Electrical Discharge Machining (EDM) machines.

CNC mills have rotating cutting tools that are moved to different areas of the workpiece to make cuts and can be used to make many different pats. CNC lathes work the other way, rotating the workpiece against a stationary cutting tool, and are used to make cylindrical parts.

CNC routers are similar to CNC mills, but have less power and cannot cut the hardest materials. They can, however, be faster than CNC mills.

EDM uses electrical discharges (sparks) instead of a sharp cutting tool to cut material. No physical contact is made between the tool and the workpiece.

CNC machines are often defined by their number of axes. More axes mean they can move their tool and/or workpiece in a greater number of ways, giving greater cutting flexibility and the ability to make more complex parts in a shorter time.

3Q Machining is known as one of the best CNC machining companies in China in terms of quality, speed, and customer service. With high-quality CNC machines, we can easily achieve +/- 0.02mm of tolerance and can even get within +/- 0.01mm. But keep in mind that it can have an impact on the cost.

MOQ: From 1 piece to ~3000pcs each color each part

Sample payment: 100%

Tooling payment:50% deposit, 50% balance after sample approval

Product order payment: T/T 30% deposit, 70% after pre-shipment inspection

It’s no problem to arrange third party inspection before shipment, please book the inspection date 7 days in advance

What Is a CNC Router

What is CNC Machining

CNC [computer numerical control] is a method of digitally designing a product and using this design to cut out the product parts.

CNC machines include CNC mills, CNC turning machines (or lathes), CNC routers, and Electrical Discharge Machining (EDM) machines.

CNC mills have rotating cutting tools that are moved to different areas of the workpiece to make cuts and can be used to make many different pats. CNC lathes work the other way, rotating the workpiece against a stationary cutting tool, and are used to make cylindrical parts.

CNC routers are similar to CNC mills, but have less power and cannot cut the hardest materials. They can, however, be faster than CNC mills.

EDM uses electrical discharges (sparks) instead of a sharp cutting tool to cut material. No physical contact is made between the tool and the workpiece.

CNC machines are often defined by their number of axes. More axes mean they can move their tool and/or workpiece in a greater number of ways, giving greater cutting flexibility and the ability to make more complex parts in a shorter time.

Use of CNC Machining

CNC machining is useful for a huge number of industries. From a single prototype sample parts to large volume production products, it can use for most of manufacturing process.

Using CNC machining is a great way to create multiple copies of the same precision product. This is why it’s often a popular option for engine or machinery manufacturing. Creating parts for gears, shafts, and brakes is suitable for a CNC machines.

design-and-rapid-prototyping-1-400x265

Regardless of the manufacturing process used to create the end-use part, CNC machining is widely used by designers as a means of creating early and late-stage prototypes with short turnarounds times. CNC prototyping allow designers to rapidly iterate ideas without tooling costs or waiting times. It is one of the best ways to create concept model and function prototype to verify the design. Compared with other rapid prototyping methods, rapid CNC machining allows us to get tight tolerance prototypes in real materials fast.

CNC Prototyping is the preferred option to bring new design life among the other rapid prototyping methods, unless the products are designed for 3D printing or other methods only.

molding making

CNC machining and EDM are the main methods to fabricate metal tooling for injection molding, high pressure die casting, blow molding, roller molding, stamping, blending and so on.

High speed CNC machines allow us to make high precision copper patterns, mold cavities, mold base, lifter and other mold components in very short term. Moreover, with 5 axis milling machines, we can mill the deep pocket features in hours which take days to make by EDM in the past. That’s how we can speed up the mold making process significantly. Check out how rapid tooling works.

Automotive

In the automotive industry, CNC machining is the most popular way to create concept cars as well as the function testing components, such as lighting, engine, transmission & steering system. It is also widely used to produce high volume automotive parts and post-machining the die casting parts, investment casting parts.

It is especially useful for custom automotive parts, which may be required for repairs or for limited-edition luxury vehicles, since it is too costly to make few parts by molding process.

aero space

CNC machining has for several years been an integral part of aerospace manufacturing. That’s partly down to the extremely high precision of CNC machines, making the process suitable for safety-critical parts that will be used on aircraft.

Machinable aerospace parts include prototype engine components, fuel panels, landing gear components and engine mounts.

medical

The machinability of many grades of titanium and stainless steel makes CNC machining a widely used process in healthcare, with the process regularly used to create implants, medical devices and surgical tools such as scalpels.

Tight tolerances and fast turnarounds are especially important for items such as titanium hip implants, which should be tailored to a patient’s anatomy.

consumer products

Though injection molding dominates the production of simple plastic parts, many off-the-shelf goods are created with CNC machining. Household goods and appliances often contain machined parts, while items like enclosures and fixtures are also suitable for the process. Goods like sporting equipment may also be CNC machined. The CNC machining of metal and plastic components plays a big role in the electronics industry. Items such as laptop casings, connectors and sockets can all be reliably made with a CNC machine.

Nowadays, 3D printing technology has become a competitor for CNC machining manufacturing, however, CNC still holds the upper hand on certain products. 3D printing is great if you’re working in plastic and need a lower-quality product. It’s also good if you have a quick turn around time.

However, when it comes to precision cutting or high volumes of orders CNC machinery is your best option. This also offers you a wider choice of materials to use for your projects.

What’s the difference between 3D printing and CNC Maching? Let’s take a look.

How much deos CNC Machining cost?

The CNC machining cost can be vary different depending on what is your custom parts design and the order quantities. 

There are some basic information of CNC pricing you need to know. For example, product design cost it will begin when you set up the project even it’s not start production; the material not only affect the quality also it is the main cost of your custom parts; the precision requirement will decide what cnc machinery needs to be used, then could be the main cost of your product;

You also need to think about:

  • The quantities of your order
  • The cost of using surface treatment
  • Labor costs in different areas
  • Any additional cost such as packing cost, shipment cost

To understand more, let’s take a look at each of the things that affect CNC machining pricing.

The cost of materials

How much does it cost to CNC aluminum? How much does it cost to CNC aluminum?How much does it cost to CNC stainless steel?

Plastic: ABS, PC, ABS+PC, PP, PS, POM, PMMA (Acrylic), PAGF30, PCGF30, Teflon, DHPE, HDPE, PPS, PEEK. Learn More about our Plastic Machining

Metal: Aluminum, Steel, Stainless Steel (17-4, Inconel 625 & 718), Magnesium, Titanium, Zinc, Brass, Bronze, Copper. Learn More about our Metal Machining

These are the most common materials for CNC prototyping and production parts. Besides that, we can work with any type of machinable plastic and metal we can purchase from the stock market. Review More Materials & Finishes Options

What’s more: We are able to create a custom plastic block or bar for the material such as PA GF50, PPS GF50. To discover further plastic materials we can do, please contact our team.

What plastic and metal material you use for the cnc machining custom parts will have big impact on how much it cost.

In generally, plastic material will be cheaper than metal because it is easier to be machined.

The cost of your material is often given per 6″x6″x1″ sheet. The cost of some popular plastics per sheet are:

  • ABS costs $17 per block
  • POM (Delrin) costs $27 per block
  • Nylon 6 costs $30 per block

The cost of some popular metals for CNC machined parts are:

  • Aluminum 6061 costs $25 per block
  • Aluminum 7075 costs $80 per block
  • Stainless steel 304 costs $90 per block

It’s important to know that you will be charged for the use of a whole block. Where possible try to make as many parts of your design fit into one block as you can. This will mean you have fewer blocks to use overall and save you some cost in the order.

The cost of different CNC Machinery

There’s different CNC machinery as follow;

1. CNC MILLING

2. CNC TURNING

3. 3-axis CNC

4. 4-axis CNC

5. 5-axis CNC

6. CNC ROUTER

7. EDM

The different design of your custom parts require different CNC Machinery to produce it, because the machinery cost is huge different and it require different technique engineer & operator for different machinery, also the production speed & time is different, therefor, the cost is much different when with different CNC Machinery.

It’s very important to have a appropriate design drawing with reasonable dimension tolerance then we can choose the easiest way to produce it.

A company will set up the cost of machining at an hourly rate. We figures this out using the price of buying the machine and how long the machine should operate for each year in hours.

There are 3 main types of CNC machines: 3-axis machinery and 4-axis machinery and 5-axis machinery.

3-axis machines including CNC milling machines, which cost around $40 per hour to run, and CNC turning machines, which cost about $35 per hour to run. The price for CNC milling machines often increases to accommodate the operator’s salary as well.

Multi-axis machines are more expensive to run so will cost more. They come in at between $75 and $120 per hour. Some may be even more expensive than this so it’s worth asking about your machine options when getting a quote.

Let’s see what’s the difference between 3-axis cnc machinery and 4-axis cnc machinery at;

3 Axis CNC MACHINING

3-axis cnc machining

4 Axis CNC MACHINING

4-axis cnc machining

5 axis CNC MACHINING

5-axis cnc machining

The Finish of Your Custom Parts

Different finish for your custom parts will have different costs, here’s the finishes you can considering as follow;

As-Machined: The most popular and cost efficient way for inner functional components. Fine and even tool path is also good for aspect parts.

Bead Blasted: The part is left with a matt appearance. Range of 120 to 320 beads allows us to create different roughness to the surface.

Anodized: Type II creates a corrosion-resistant finish. Parts can be anodized in different colors—clear, black, red, and blue are most common—and is usually associated with low silicone element series of aluminum. Type III is thicker and creates a wear-resistant layer in addition to the corrosion resistance seen with Type II.

Powder Coat: This is a process where powdered paint is sprayed onto a part which is then baked in an oven. This creates a strong, wear- and corrosion-resistant layer that is more durable than standard painting methods. A wide variety of colors are available to create the desired aesthetic.

What is a CNC router used for?

Thinking of labour costs

The labour cost is much different in different country also different areas although in one country.

CNC machining does save labour cost when the order quantities is high volume, but the whole labour cost is still high when the order quantities is small, because even make a 1pcs prototype sample with cnc machining, it still require drawing design, program design, and operator to adjust elementor of machinery for the first piece product, and the inspection work.

Additional costs

  •  Packaging cost; with some special products which need a custom design packaging of course will cause additional cost.
  • Shipment cost; air shipment, sea shipment, express shipment is different cost per KG, we are working with DHL/FEDEX/UPS and other forwarder to have competitive cost for your shipment.
CNC Machine Costs

Time to get a best quote

As you can see, there’s different aspects would affect the whole cost for your custom products with CNC Machining service.

Our sales/engineer team would be happy to help you to review your product design drawing to acquire the best cost option for your consideration, you are welcome to contact us here….

Leave Your Question & Needs Here

Our project support team will have feedback for you within 1 working day!