CNC bending and punching are both fabrication processes used to process sheet metal. Although each technique relies on Computer Numerical Control (CNC) technology, they perform unique functions that result in different end products. It’s important to understand the purpose and benefits of each process to ensure you select the right option for your project.
CNC Punching Explained
CNC punching is a common sheet metal manufacturing process used to easily stamp shapes into sheet metal pieces. It involves the use of CNC punch presses, which are electromechanical devices that are programmed to stamp specific shapes into the workpiece. These machines are available with multi-tool turrets or with a single head and tool rail. To meet a range of needs, CNC punch presses can accommodate a wide variety of materials and thicknesses.
CNC punch presses follow information from CAD/CAM design software to create efficient layouts and select the appropriate tooling. This process also ensures the precise positioning of the sheet metal under the punching head, resulting in a high level of efficiency, flexibility, and accuracy.
Benefits of CNC Punching
The benefits of CNC punching include:
- Efficiency and Speed: CNC punch presses can achieve speeds of 1000 hits per minute. In addition, CNC punching machines are non-thermal, resulting in no heat-affected zones (HAZ) that need to be addressed later in the process.
- Flexibility: This process can produce everything from flat components to embossed logos, dimples, and hooks. This fabrication technique can also perform countersinking and tapping, which can be produced in situ to eliminate the need for secondary operations.
- Part complexity: CNC punching can process parts with complex shapes without the need for special fixtures.
- Accuracy: CNC punching can achieve high levels of machining accuracy while maintaining optimal quality.
CNC Bending Explained
CNC bending involves the use of CNC press brakes (sometimes referred to as CNC brake presses) to bend sheet metal into specific shapes. These machines are capable of working with sheet metal ranging from a few millimeters to several meters in length.
Using V-shaped or U-shaped tooling, CNC press brakes bend cold sheet metal into a variety of geometric, cross-sectional shapes based on pre-programmed instructions. This method is used to bend components for a variety of applications, including shipbuilding, railway vehicles, lighting parts, automotive parts, aircraft components, and more.
Benefits of CNC Bending
The benefits of CNC bending include:
- Cost Reduction: Given that the CNC bending process is automated, it is very cost-efficient when compared to manual options. Each process can be done on a single machine, and it requires less labor. Since the operator’s only job is to feed the machine the metal material, there is a lower risk of human error and inaccurate components.
- Time Saved: Since our CNC bending is automated the enhanced consistency and accuracy eliminate the need for reworking that may be required with manual processes.
- Consistent and Accurate Components: CNC punching machines are built to deliver consistent and accurate results to meet customers’ tight tolerance requirements.
Work With Cyber-Fab for your CNC Punching and CNC Bending Needs
Cyber-Fab has been at the forefront of metal fabrication for over 30 years. With a dedication to quality, innovation, and versatility, we provide top-quality metalworking services for clients in a wide range of demanding industries, including electronics, aerospace, defense, and more.