Machining or material removal processes are secondary manufacturing operations that are used to achieve precise tolerances or to impart controlled surface finishes to a part. This article summarizes rules for designing parts to improve machined part quality and reduce machining costs in mass and batch production environments. It discusses the factors affecting the total cost of a machining operation, including raw material costs, labor costs, and equipment costs. The article describes the three types of machining systems, namely, general-purpose machine tools, production machining systems, and computer numerically controlled (CNC) machining systems. It discusses general design-for-machining rules that are applicable to all parts, regardless of the type of equipment used to produce them. Special considerations for production machining systems and CNC machining systems are discussed. The article describes the structure and typical uses of computer-aided process planning and design-for-manufacturing programs.
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