Best 10 Common Metals Used in CNC Machining

Published On: January 25, 20230 Comments on Best 10 Common Metals Used in CNC MachiningTags: Last Updated: January 24, 20246.8 min read

CNC (computer numerical control) machining is a process that uses computer-controlled machines to cut, shape, and form various types of materials, including metals. The choice of metal is an important factor in the success of any CNC machining project. Different types of metals have unique properties and characteristics that make them well-suited for certain types of applications.

metals for CNC

In this blog post, we will take a closer look at the top 10 common metals used in CNC machining and their properties. From aluminum to titanium, and from brass to carbide, we will explore the advantages and challenges of each metal to help you make an informed decision when it comes to selecting the right metal for your next CNC machining project.

Best 10 Common Metals For CNC Machining

1. Aluminum

Aluminum is a lightweight metal that is easy to machine and has good thermal conductivity. It is commonly used in aerospace and automotive applications, as well as in the production of parts for electronic devices. One of the main advantages of aluminum is its low density, which makes it ideal for applications where weight is a major concern. Additionally, aluminum has good corrosion resistance, making it well-suited for use in outdoor or damp environments. However, one of the main challenges with machining aluminum is its low hardness, which can make it more prone to wear and tear during the machining process.

2. Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is a type of steel that contains chromium, which makes it resistant to rust and corrosion. It is a strong and durable metal that is often used in the food and medical industries. Stainless steel is also known for its excellent corrosion resistance, making it well-suited for use in a wide range of environments. Additionally, stainless steel has good machinability, making it relatively easy to work with. However, one of the main challenges with machining stainless steel is that it can be more difficult to achieve a high level of surface finish due to its high levels of chromium and nickel. According to the CNC machining experts from machiningtoday.com , a CNC machining factory in China, Aluminium and Stainless steel are the most used metals for CNC machining.

3. Brass

Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc, and it is known for its yellow color and good corrosion resistance. It is commonly used in the production of parts for musical instruments, plumbing fixtures, and other decorative items. One of the main advantages of brass is its good machinability, which makes it relatively easy to work with. Additionally, brass has good corrosion resistance, making it well-suited for use in damp or outdoor environments. However, one of the main challenges with brass is that it can be relatively expensive, making it less cost-effective for some applications.

4. Copper

Copper is a soft, malleable metal that is known for its excellent electrical and thermal conductivity. It is often used in the production of electrical wiring, heat exchangers, and other electrical components. One of the main advantages of copper is its excellent electrical and thermal conductivity, which makes it well-suited for use in a wide range of electrical and thermal applications. Additionally, copper has good machinability, making it relatively easy to work with. However, one of the main challenges with copper is that it can be relatively expensive, making it less cost-effective for some applications.

5. Tool Steel

Tool steel is a type of steel that is known for its hardness and ability to hold a sharp edge. It is commonly used in the production of cutting tools, dies, and other tools that are subjected to high levels of wear and tear. One of the main advantages of tool steel is its excellent hardness and wear resistance, which makes it well-suited for use in a wide range of cutting and shaping applications. Additionally, tool steel has good machinability, making it relatively easy to work with. However, one of the main challenges with tool steel is that it can be relatively expensive, making it less cost-effective for some applications.

CNC machining

6. Titanium

Titanium is a lightweight metal that is known for its strength and corrosion resistance. It is commonly used in aerospace and medical applications, as well as in the production of parts for consumer electronics. One of the main advantages of titanium is its excellent strength-to-weight ratio, which makes it ideal for use in aerospace and other weight-sensitive applications. Additionally, titanium has good corrosion resistance, making it well-suited for use in a wide range of environments. However, one of the main challenges with titanium is that it can be relatively difficult to machine due to its high strength and hardness, making it more challenging to achieve precise, accurate cuts and shapes. Additionally, titanium can be relatively expensive, making it less cost-effective for some applications.

7. Inconel

Inconel is a type of nickel-chromium alloy that is known for its excellent resistance to heat and corrosion. It is commonly used in high-temperature applications, such as in the aerospace and power generation industries. One of the main advantages of Inconel is its excellent heat resistance, which makes it well-suited for use in high-temperature environments. Additionally, Inconel has good corrosion resistance, making it well-suited for use in a wide range of environments. However, one of the main challenges with Inconel is that it can be relatively difficult to machine due to its high strength and hardness, making it more challenging to achieve precise, accurate cuts and shapes. Additionally, Inconel can be relatively expensive, making it less cost-effective for some applications.

8. Tungsten

Tungsten is a dense and heavy metal that is known for its high melting point and excellent heat resistance. It is commonly used in the production of cutting tools, heat exchangers, and other components that are subjected to high temperatures. This metal is used most for manufacturing CNC tool holders, said experts from Tool Holder Now. One of the main advantages of tungsten is its excellent heat resistance, which makes it well-suited for use in high-temperature environments. Additionally, tungsten has good wear resistance, making it well-suited for use in cutting and shaping applications. However, one of the main challenges with tungsten is that it can be relatively difficult to machine due to its high density and hardness, making it more challenging to achieve precise, accurate cuts and shapes. Additionally, tungsten can be relatively expensive, making it less cost-effective for some applications.

9. Bronze

Bronze is an alloy of copper and tin, and it is known for its good corrosion resistance and excellent machinability. It is commonly used in the production of bearings, gears, and other mechanical components. One of the main advantages of bronze is its good machinability, which makes it relatively easy to work with. Additionally, bronze has good corrosion resistance, making it well-suited for use in damp or outdoor environments. However, one of the main challenges with bronze is that it can be relatively expensive, making it less cost-effective for some applications.

10. Carbide

Carbide is a type of ceramic material that is known for its excellent hardness and wear resistance. It is commonly used in the production of cutting tools, dies, and other tools that are subjected to high levels of wear and tear. One of the main advantages of carbide is its excellent hardness and wear resistance, which makes it well-suited for use in cutting and shaping applications. Additionally, carbide has good machinability, making it relatively easy to work with. However, one of the main challenges with carbide is that it can be relatively expensive, making it less cost-effective for some applications.

Conclusion

CNC machining is a process that allows manufacturers to create precise, accurate parts and components from a variety of different types of metals. The top 10 common metals used in CNC machining are aluminum, stainless steel, brass, copper, tool steel, titanium, Inconel, tungsten, bronze and carbide. Each of these metals has its own unique properties and characteristics that make it well-suited for certain types of applications. Therefore, when it comes to selecting the right metal for a specific CNC machining project, it’s important to consider the properties of each metal, as well as the specific requirements of the application.



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