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  • Cool Video of a CNC Machine Tool at Work

    Posted by David Foster on July 23rd, 2014 (All posts by )

    Here’s a motorcycle helmet of fairly complex design being fabricated out of a single block of aluminum by a computer-numerically-controlled machine tool:

    LINK

    There’s been a lot of excitement lately about 3-D printing, and rightly so, but the hype level in some quarters may be getting a little extreme.  I think a lot of journalists lack an appropriate context into which to put this emerging technology, and, in particular, fail to understand just how much flexibility and universality is already provided by the numerically-controlled machine tools which have been in common use for the last several decades.

    See also my post on 3-D printing from 2013.

     

    5 Responses to “Cool Video of a CNC Machine Tool at Work”

    1. David Foster Says:

      For a more artistic and slightly risque example of CNC, see this video

    2. MikeK Says:

      In 1995, my next door neighbor in Hanover NH was using an Apple computer running such a program to machine musical instruments from rare woods. He traveled all over the world selling those recorders he made. His shop was in his house.

    3. Jason in LA Says:

      And I thought I was bad-ass when I operated a lathe in junior high school.

    4. chuck Says:

      Now lets see that in stainless or, for a challenge, copper ;)

      The software for running the machines is just as impressive the machines themselves.

    5. Grurray Says:

      Notice the machine is made in Japan.
      They make the best and the majority of these types of machines and same with robots.

      There are now scaled down “benchtop” versions:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7a7ySXvIbnE

      I guess, like everything else, the trend is to scale down and become distributed. When that happens, the programming will become more and more automated and standardized. The real advantage will then go to the content creators.