Turning and boring are two components of lathing, which is perhaps the oldest form of tool used by mankind. Turning is considered the shaping of the exterior of a workpiece while boring involves shaping the interior. Turning and boring can be completed on manual lathes or, for precision work, they can be controlled through CNC technology on highly specialized machining equipment.

Some Basic Information

In general, turning operations are used to create symmetrical parts by removing material from the exterior of a rotating, or turning, workpiece. The cutting tool, which is non-rotary, travels linearly along the workpiece, controlled by the CNC software.

The speed of the rotation of the workpiece, the type of cutting tool used and the option to use a single or multi-point tool will all come into play when setting up CNC turning operations. In all cases, operators will need to consider the type of material in the workplace as well as the desired shape when setting up the program.

While turning is often used with metals and alloys, it can also be used with non-metal materials as well. Turning can be performed on ceramics, composite materials, thermoplastic as well as elastomers.

Options to Consider

With precision systems, turning can be used to create a variety of different shapes and features to the outside of a workpiece. This can include creating grooves, threads, steps, tapers and symmetrical contouring of the surface in very specific patterns and shapes.

While turning operations can be used on original material as the workpiece, it is not uncommon for the operation to also be used on parts and components to add threads, grooves or shapes. As it can be more precise and faster than other types of operations to create these features, it is definitely an option to consider for parts and components for any type of application.

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