CNC Internal Grinder
CNC internal grinders, sometimes called “NC” machines, are a kind of high precision, computer-controlled grinding machine that utilizes an abrasive ball device for fine, high-quality finishes. The most popular models of CNC internal grinders all use the same basic technology: the CNC motor is programmed to grind at a pre-determined speed, enabling fine-tuning the grinding results. The most popular types of CNC internal grinders include the handheld, bench, and barrel versions.
A CNC internal grinder has several advantages over other types of machines. It is mostly used for precision metal and wire work and is ideal for cutting either thin layers or long strips. Unlike traditional “punching and pulling” units, the CNC machine runs both through a tool rest and has a very smooth inner operating surface. Because the grinding wheels are placed inside a CNC machine, it is also called “direct” or “direct run” CNC machines.
CNC internal grinders that are powered by hand or by electric motor are the most popular in applications requiring high precision and high speed performance. One example is a CNC mill that produces both vertical and horizontal cuts. Another example is a CNC lathe that features both direct and radial motion, making it useful for producing intricate spiral and fan-style components. The innermost component is typically made out of fiberglass or acrylic, with the metallic surfaces being sealed and painted.
The CNC internal grinding machine has several different axes of rotation. Each of these is controlled by a separate machine control unit (MCU), usually part of the CNC itself. Typically, the CNC consists of an engine that consists of a number of computer chips, printed circuit boards (PCBs), and memory banks that store data for the operation of the CNC machine.
In general, CNC internal grinders require less maintenance than many other types of CNC machines. Because the inner “box” of the CNC machine is sealed from the outside, there is no need for lubricant, oil, or dust collection. Since there is no lubrication, there is also no chance that CNC inner grinders will seize, jam, or even explode – a common problem of commercially-made CNC grinders. With the right type of lubricant, it is also possible to use the CNC machine without the help of a human operator.
Although CNC internal grinders have a number of advantages, they can also be complex machines to operate, requiring knowledge not only on how to use the CNC machine but also on the operation of all of the internal CNC components. This makes the CNC more difficult to repair should the operator experience problems or complications with the machine. Because of this complication, many hobbyists tend to opt for a different type of CNC grinding machine, one that is designed to be easier to repair. For those who are interested in building their own CNC machine, hobbyists often choose to use off-the-shelf parts for their CNC grinding machines. However, for those who are experienced with CNC machines, building their own CNC machine is always an option.