At the conclusion of our webinar, Effective Ways To Reduce Your CNC Machining Costs, we had several questions submitted to our presenter, Mark Stanley, General Manager at Metal Craft Machining, Epec’s sister company. We have compiled these questions into a readable format on our blog.
Q&A From Our Live CNC Machining Webinar
- Do you offer inventory stocking programs?
- What are the definitions of CAD, CAM, and CNC?
- What is the difference between CNC milling and CNC lathe machines?
- How do you handle ITAR parts with your dual-sourcing model?
- What is DFM?
- Would easier-to-machine materials be suggested on quotes vs. requested materials?
Watch the Recording Below:
Question: Do you offer inventory stocking programs?
Answer: The answer to that is, yes. We quote for and accept up to 12-month blanket orders. We can do daily, weekly, and monthly releases with those. We have ample warehouse space to accommodate almost any size order or part.
Question: What are the definitions of CAD, CAM, and CNC?
Answer: CAD stands for computer-aided design. And this is where the part is drawn effectively. CAM stands for computer-aided manufacturing. And for us, this is where the part is translated for the CNC machine. And CNC translates to computer numerical control, and this is what the machine uses to control the tool paths on the materials.
Question: What is the difference between CNC milling and CNC lathe machines?
Answer: Well, they both use CNC for the numerical control of the tools, but where they're different is the material on a mill is held stationary and the cutting tools rotate to remove the stock. And now a lathe, on the other side, while that's best at forming cylinders and round parts, it differs from the mill in almost the opposite way because the material spins at a chuck, and the tools that are used to remove the materials are held in fixed positions and then manipulated to remove the material. So, it’s kind of achieving similar results, but in totally different ways.
Question: How do you handle ITAR parts with your dual-sourcing model?
Answer: Well, we are an ITAR-registered company, and all ITAR fabrication is done within the U.S. And Epec, as an industry leader really in supply chain management, Epec has had years of experience to develop processes and procedures that assure ITAR compliance. In the RF world, virtually everything is ITAR. Very little is commercial that we deal with. So, the procedures in that, as well as everything within Epec relative to ITAR are independent, completely independent from the offshore processes, which assures that everything to do with U.S. proprietary defense information is maintained secure. It's not shared with anyone that is not authorized to be in possession of it. So yes, from the initial quote to product shipment, your documents are protected and secure.
Question: What is DFM?
Answer: DFM is an acronym for design for manufacturing. There's also a DFMA, which is designed for manufacturing and assembly. And we can get into that too if you want to, we can start doing your assembly side, but in this case, we're just dealing with the manufacturing side. Ultimately, what this is, is it's an engineering process. And, by the way, a process that is best applied at the initial engineering or product design stage, but it's a process of refining the part design with the goal of being able to fabricate a part for a lower cost. So, simply stated, the intent is to identify and remove design features that drive cost without negatively affecting part functionality at the end of the day.
Question: Would easier-to-machine materials be suggested on quotes vs. requested materials?
Answer: You can submit the quote with a specified material and let us know if you are open to other material suggestions. Also, we are always available to discuss material choices for your application during the design phase, prior to quote. Either way, it is not a problem for us.