Custom CNC Machining: Everything You Need To Know

cnc cutting

Custom CNC machining is an ever-evolving field that cad modeling and global shipping improved. Any order worldwide can expect parts within days, thanks to its availability. It also revolutionized the manufacturing industry because of its superior quality without compromising speed and cost. Let us discuss the wonders of CNC machining used for custom parts.

What Is Custom CNC Machining?

Custom machining is a manufacturing process specialized in providing unique solutions using a CNC machine. It’s an automated alternative to create parts that aren’t readily available by cutting a workpiece to its desired shape. Typical processes of custom machining include drilling, milling, or even something out of the standard.

Why Is Custom Machining Necessary?

There are several reasons why custom machining is essential for manufacturing processes. A good reason is that some parts are non-standard and not readily available from suppliers. Standard parts have features that need inconvenient modification to achieve the custom part’s function.

Machine shops also prefer custom machining for low volume parts, given that a mechanical design has detailed instructions. They can provide a functional part without using complex processes. They offer services in a broad range of materials within tight tolerances, so you can receive consistently accurate details even if designed out of the standard.

How Does Custom Machining Work?

An excellent way to start this customized process is by providing a custom mechanical design using CAD or CAM software. It can provide a basis for a CNC program, which you need to import to the CNC machine. You also need the right size for the correct material for the CNC machine to cut.

After setting everything up, the CNC machine can start cutting the material seamlessly and flawlessly. You can use the same program to create a precisely similar part. You can also use it on a different material if you want a stronger or weaker version of your first design.

Types Of Custom CNC Machines

You can find the following custom CNC machines in several industries:

  • Drills
  • Lathe
  • Mills
  • EDM (electric discharge machine)
  • Plasma cutters
  • Water jet cutters

Custom machining can create a unique part or build a redesign of an existing one. You can use more than one machine to create a single piece depending on your product requirements. 

Advantages Of Custom Machining

Let us elaborate more on the advantages of using custom CNC machines to create functionally precise nonstandard parts.

Easy Prototyping

Prototyping requires features readily done to copy a functional mechanical design using cost-effective yet durable materials. CNC machining can do complex 3D parts with an additional benefit of accuracy. When the prototype fails, the designer can do a quick modification and inform the machinist to produce another part without worries.

Small Production Run

CNC machining has a low price to partition, making it the optimum manufacturing process for small quantities. That is why it can do test runs at a low cost before proceeding into mass production. Custom machining can create a few tricky parts without compromising price and quality. Examples are prototype designs and injection molding tooling.

Quick Turnaround Time

CNC machining doesn’t require forming tools such as molds or filaments. That’s why when making a custom part, you can start the production once you obtained approval and finished uploading the files. So this process is efficient when you are using CNC machining services to make urgent and non-standard parts.

High-Quality Parts

Custom machining provides high precision, repeatability, and complexity. Meeting tight requirements is easy when using CNC machines for manufacturing processes. An excellent mechanical design and an optimized program can achieve complex shapes set nonstandard parts require.

Manufacturers also use CNC machining to shape materials with extreme hardness. Examples that will benefit from customizing is when creating injection mold tooling. This in-display requires materials that don’t deform even when exposed to high temperatures. Custom machining such as EDM can efficiently process hardened metals, benefiting this high demand industry.

When Should You Use Custom CNC Machines

These considerations affect the decision of choosing custom CNC machining for manufacturing processes.

Low Cost Per Part Requirement

When you require a low cost per part for a small batch of custom parts, it’s the right decision to opt for custom machining. Few pieces of complex components using this manufacturing process has a lower price than other manufacturing processes. An example is when producing low quantity plastic parts. CNC machinists are happy to manufacture a few hundred parts rather than injection mold companies to make tooling first before starting the process.

Quick Turnaround For Low Quantities

Custom machining produces a high-speed process that doesn’t compromise other requirements. Other manufacturing alternatives cannot keep up with CNC machining’s speed if the order quantity is not more than a few hundred parts.

Tight Quality Compliance

If your custom part has complex features requiring high-grade material and tight tolerances, the best option is to use CNC machining. No manufacturing process can duplicate CNC machining’s quality in accuracy, repeatability, and material strength.

What To Keep In Mind When Using CNC Machining

Like other manufacturing methods, custom machining has lowdowns too. Take note of these considerations before opting for the CNC machining process.


CNC machines need correct codes and parameters before running the program. A code with errors will cause collisions or structural deformities to the finished part. That is why, before starting the manufacturing process, the operator can do a quick check by running the program without a workpiece.


The finished custom product might require more than one type of CNC machining. Some custom CNC machines combine different functions in one cell. It doesn’t remove the workpiece while replacing the tool used to make the features. It also uses the same program, but using this machine might need additional costs for some instances.


Whether you design complex parts that CNC machining can provide, you still need to depend on materials’ availability. Ordering them might require a minimum quantity, which conflicts with the low volume advantage of CNC machining.

Contact Your Expert Custom Machinists Today

Custom CNC machining provides consistency to produce parts, which is almost impossible to replicate manually. It is also the optimum choice of high-quality components in low quantities. Contact us to get a quote when you need to opt for CNC machining for your business.

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