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Techno CNC Application Articles
CNC Routers & Machines: Application Articles

CNC Education

Conventional shop class becomes computer-integrated manufacturing 
(As seen in the October 2010 Issue of Woodworkingnetwork.com) 
Everyone pitches in to bring computer integrated manufacturing classes
to a rural high school.

'Shop' Students Flex Creative Muscle on Charity Art Project 
(As seen in the March 5, 2006 issue of the Tyler Courier-Times Telegraph) 
"In the technology education classroom at Hawkins High School, the air is clean and wood-particle-free. The haphazardly constructed wooden tables, birdhouses and stools have been replaced by long tables and tall chairs. Piles of wood and tools are cleared out, and long rows of gleaming computers circle the room." 

Student Installation Gets Wide Acclaim at Texas A&M 
(As seen in the February 2011 Issue of Modern Woodworking) 
"Techno Inc. recently played a major role in helping a group of Texas A&M architecture students turn their design concepts into reality. The project called "Plywood Mesh #002" started as a small furniture project and evolved into an 18x16-foot sculpture."

Foam Fabrication

CNC Router Drops Production Time for Foam Samples from Five days to Two
"A CNC router allows Foam Fabricators to produce the typical order of 20 sample models in two days compared to the five days needed to cut the foam pieces by hand. In addition to saving time, the CNC router frees up engineers who previously had to pitch in and help cut foam pieces when a large quantity of samples were needed. " 

CNC Router Shrinks Labor Time for Foam Samples from Hours to Minutes
"Previously, prototypes of the company's molded foam products were carved by hand, requiring between one hour and eight hours of a skilled craftsman's time. Now, after CNC machines are programmed from CAD geometry, they automatically cut the prototypes. Programming and setup takes about 20 minutes, while actual cutting takes 10 minutes to four hours, depending on the complexity of the part. The machines operate unattended except for loading the foam stock and removing finished pieces." [top]

Jewelry Manufacturing

CNC Production of Wax Models Boosts Ring Sales by 50%
"Bob Hendricks, owner of Hendricks Manufacturing, adapted a CNC router for cutting wax models for class rings and expanded his business by 50%. The typical way of making models for rings and other jewelry is to cut the wax by hand or with a pantograph. This is slow and time consuming. Hendricks configured a CNC router to cut the models automatically from school emblems that are scanned into a computer. Because the CNC router cuts wax much faster than the previous methods, Hendricks can charge less for class rings than other suppliers." [top]

Lasers

Economical, Accurate Gantry Table Key to Development of New Laser Scanner Line
"Laser Design discovered a gantry base that provides high precision table movements over a wide range of motion at a very economical cost. As a result, Laser Design has been able to introduce the Surveyor RE series of 3D laser digitizers at half the price of what used to be their lowest cost product. "This new product has filled an important gap in our capabilities by allowing us to offer a very accurate reverse engineering tool at a price that can be afforded by small and medium sized shops," said Martin Schuster, Chairman and Founder of Laser Design." [top]

Model Making

Topographical Golf Art Maker Reduces
Production Time by 75%

"A computer numeric controlled (CNC) router enabled Butch Stocker to turn a hobby into a viable business by reducing the production time by 75% for his unique 3D, topological depictions of golf holes. Previously Stocker produced these works of art entirely by hand and needed between 30 and 40 hours to produce a single piece. By using a CNC router to cut the intricately shaped pieces of matting that comprise each piece; production now takes only five to 10 hours." [top]

CNC Milling Machine Eliminates Three Weeks of Hand Carving on Techno Dome Model
"Peter McCann Architectural Models Inc. (PMAMI) saved three weeks in the production of an architectural model of the Technodome by cutting molds for the roof sections on a CNC Router instead of hand carving them. The Technodome, when it is built, will be "the world's largest and single-most technologically advanced indoor attraction ever," according to its developer. The architectural model itself was huge, the largest PMAMI has ever produced." [top]

Precisely Shaped, Perfectly Symmetrical, Composite Rudders for America's Cup Boats
"America's Cup boats are getting faster all the time, and part of that is due to Goetz Marine Technology's (GMT) use of CNC to produce the precisely shaped, perfectly symmetrical composite rudders many of these boats use. GMT rudders can be found on several boats competing in the 1995 America's Cup race as well as on the 1992 winner, America3, and contender Stars & Stripes." [top]

CNC Router Reduces Time Needed to Produce Vehicle Models While Increasing Accuracy
"Utilizing CNC machining instead of clay modeling makes it possible to significantly reduce vehicle modeling time while substantially increasing the accuracy of the model. Previously, it took Art Center students hundreds of hours to produce clay models of their concept car designs by hand sculpting. With a CNC router, they produce designs that represent their concepts within a much smaller margin of error in much less time."[top]

Versatility of CNC Router Brings in New Business and Increases Sales by 40%
"A computer numeric controlled (CNC) router has increased sales at Carpe Diem Art Supplies by 40% by allowing the company to produce 3D physical models from digital data. The company started out selling art supplies to architecture students and soon found that it could substantially increase revenues by first renting time and later producing contract architectural models on the CNC router." [top]

Production of Molds Shrinks from 3 days to 6-1/2 Hours, While Improving Accuracy
"Liberty Displays Inc., cuts highly accurate molds for earring display cases in just six and a half hours on a CNC router, compared to the three days needed previously to cut them by hand. The mold shape is programmed in CAM software, which then generates the cutter toolpath." [top] 

CNC Router Cuts Time to Produce Architectural Models from Weeks to One Day While Improving Accuracy
"Suburban Building Studios slashed the time required to produce detailed architectural models from several weeks to one day by switching from hand modeling to a CNC router. The CNC router, which costs only a fraction of the price of laser cutting machines also provides far better accuracy and detailing than could be achieved by hand. The use of CNC routing has dramatically improved the competitive position of the company by allowing it to produce higher quality models at a lower cost than its competitors." [top] 

Musical Instruments

Switching from Pantograph to CNC Router Brings Big Increase in Business Volume
"Since they began producing guitar inlays on highly accurate CNC routers instead of Pantograph machines, Custom Inlay, Inc. has taken on so much new business that it has hired eight additional employees. The improved cutting accuracy of the routers has allowed the company to bid on and win jobs it couldn't have handled before, such as the rectangular pearl inlays for Gibson guitars that require a tolerance of 0.004 inch."[top]

CNC Router Cuts New Product Development Time from 2 Months to 2 Days 
"Switching from power tools to a CNC router helped us reduce the time required to develop new guitars from two months to two days. Reducing product development time has made the company more profitable and made it possible to introduce products for smaller market niches that would have been too expensive to address in the past. It used to take two weeks to build the prototype for a new guitar with most of the time being occupied in building templates." [top]

CNC Router Helps Violin Teacher Manufacture
Violins in Spare Time

"Jesse Newcomer, who runs the Suzuki violin teaching program in Alexandria, Louisiana, and a violin dealership, produces 60 violins per year targeted at high school and college students that sell for between $2500 and $3500 retail. The CNC router produces nearly all of the parts for the violins to very high levels of accuracy in Newcomer’s garage, while he is selling, teaching or relaxing and occasionally observing it through a video monitor." [top]

Other

Automated Stud Welding Saves Labor and Improves Appearance of Kitchen Ventilation Systems
"Switching to an automated system helped a manufacturer save labor and improve the appearance of its product." [top]

PC Board Manufacturing

PCB Repair Station Built on Highly Accurate Gantry Reduces Scrapped Boards
"using a highly accurate CNC Gantry, from Techno-isel, New Hyde Park, NY as the base platform, EPC's new computer-aided PCB repair system has significantly reduced scrapped boards. IBM, for instance, recovered the cost of the repair station in only six months from salvaging scrapped boards. EPC's new station, the Model 5500, projects any 'problem traces' onto the board with an LCD projector, which indicates the most likely areas or faults and it also detects recurring production errors." [top]

Plastic Fabrication

Low-Cost CNC Router Saves Money and Reduces Time to Market for Displays
"Two CNC routers that cost a total of $40,000 annually generate $750,000 worth of plastic display products at Artistic Plastics. The PC-controlled routers produce as many parts as five people working with hand routers. The use of these machines has lowered the labor cost of router operations, enabling Artistic Plastics to charge less for this work and win more of this type of business. The use of the CNC machines also ensures customer satisfaction by producing parts with a better surface finish than is possible to achieve with hand routers." [top] 

CNC Router Helps Increase Productivity by a Factor of Five
"Switching from manual machine tools to a CNC router helps a custom plastic fabricator produce a wide range of products on the average in onefifth of the time required in the past." [top] 

Low-Cost CNC Router Saves Money and Reduces
Time to Market for Displays
 
"With the router we can now design and begin to produce new display designs in a single day," said Mike Llewellyn, Shop Supervisor for Kiss® Products. "The router has features normally found in more expensive machines like ball screws and servo- motors that make it possible to produce a very professional looking product." [top]

Airfoil Designs Help Improve Sailboard Performance 
"A more efficient airfoil design combined with computerized manufacturing technology is helping professional windsurfer racers improve their performance. The author is a former aerospace engineer who applies optimized aerodynamic profiles to the fins of windsurfing boards which are critical to their racing performance. " [top]

CNC Router Helps Reduce Time to Produce
Automated Wet Process Machines from 1900 to 1000 Hours

"Switching from conventional power tools to a computerized numerical control (CNC) router helped reduce the time to produce automated wet process machines from 1900 to 1000 hours. Poly Design was able to reduce its price for a three-position automatic transfer machine that cleans cassette boats filled with CD-ROMs or semiconductor wafers by 25% to $275,000 while increasing its profit margin." [top]

Prototyping

Appearance Models from Weeks to Days
Boulard Designs went from shop tools to CNC for faster, more-accurate crafting of
appearance models for GE® Appliances. [top]

ID Firm Produces Foam Models at Half the Cost
"An innovative industrial design firm used out-of-the-box thinking and found a way to produce prototypes at about half the cost of methods used by most firms. Not only was the initial purchase price of a gantry router less than one-fourth that of stereolithography apparatus (SLA) or CNC milling machines, day-to-day operating expenses are significantly less as well." [top]

Lighting Company Improves Product with
More Accurate CNC Prototypes

"An outdoor lighting manufacturing has improved the appearance and functionality of their product by producing CNC prototypes whose higher accuracy makes it possible to refine their product to a higher degree. In the past, Architectural Area Lighting (AAL) produced prototypes of their lighting fixtures with hand tools but this was time-consuming and inaccuracies hindered the design process. So the company purchased a CNC router that produces prototypes from foam that match the computer aided design (CAD) files used to define the part within a few thousands of an inch." [top]

CNC router Improves Industrial Designs by
Reducing Cost of Prototypes

"The use of a Windows®-based CNC router has helped Altitude Inc. improve the quality of its designs by allowing the company to make more prototypes. The Industrial Designers at Altitude are very concerned with how a product feels in the hand. Although they use solid modeling to document their designs, viewing solid models on-screen doesn't give the sense of how it feels to hold the object." [top]

Unique Combination of SLA and CNC Router Produces Higher Quality Injection Molding Prototypes 
"Combining stereo lithography apparatus (SLA) with a CNC router makes it possible to produce injection molding prototypes of a much higher quality than can be produced on SLA alone. SLA is an outstanding method of producing geometrically complex prototypes. The problem is that it's not capable of producing fine details with the crispness associated with CNC machining." [top]

Router Allows Prototype Maker to Increase Sales by 30%
"The improved accuracy and faster turnaround made possible by a computer numeric controlled (CNC) router has helped generate a 30% increase in sales at Modelmakers Inc., a manufacturer of plastic prototypes, by increasing repeat business. Previously, prototypes were made by manually cutting parts out of plastic sheet stock and gluing them together. While this method resulted in a reasonable facsimile of a part, it was slow and lacked the high level of accuracy that some customers needed. With the CNC router, designs are carved out of plastic blocks, which are then used to produce silicone molds for urethane castings." [top] 

CNC Router Economically Produces Point-Of-Purchase Display Prototypes

(As seen in the August 25, 2005 issue of PlasticsNet.com ) 
"A computer numerical control (CNC) router provides a very economical method of producing prototypes of counter display units. The displays are injection molded with molds that cost from $50,000 to $100,000 so prototypes must be built first to verify each design." [top]

Sign Making

Sign Maker Boosts Dimensional Graphic Business 10x 
"In the 10 years since Creative Graphic Services acquired a computer numeric controlled (CNC) router, dimensional business volume has increased ten-fold, primarily because the machine makes it possible to produce large dimensional signs that can not be made by hand. Unlike a flat image, a dimensional sign achieves a 3D appearance by incorporating raised elements that have been cut out of plywood or other substrate." [top] 

CNC Router Helps Increase Sign Sales 3x by Improving Productivity 300% to 1000% 
"Eye Catch Signs has increased its sign business volume by a factor of 3 in the last four years by installing a CNC router. The new router has improved productivity 300 percent to 1000 percent on cut-out and inlayed letters and carved wood signs. This makes it possible for Eye-Catch to easily beat the prices, quality and delivery time of competitors who still mainly produce letters and signs by hand."[top] 

National Sign and Design Group in Brampton, Ontario Delves into Several New Areas of Production
"National Sign recently purchased a CNC router, and is now manufacturing furniture, countertops, trade show displays, and other new sources of revenue, paying for itself within 12 months of operation." [top] 

CNC Router Helps Produce Innovative
Wood and Plastic 3D Donor Wall Designs

"Embree previously focused most of their attention towards producing stone, stainless steel and glass designs designed to motivate donors to make additional contributions. With the idea of expanding their market base by developing new styles and new designs, the company purchased a CNC router that gives them the ability to produce wood and plastic designs with 3D contours based on a computer aided design (CAD) file. The company immediately began generating new concepts for its clients, such as clear acrylic stars to recognize parents that had delivered babies and donated to the maternity ward of a hospital that paid for the machine in a single job." [top] 

Simplicity of CAD/CAM Software, CNC Router
is a Profitable Surprise
 
"The use of CAD/CAM software and the CNC router originally appeared daunting to a small shop with no automation experience, but the simplicity and ease of use of this technology was a pleasant surprise. It is now possible for Display Connection to easily beat the prices, quality and delivery time of competitors who still mainly produce displays by hand." [top] 

New Low-Cost Router Helps Sign Maker Built a Profitable Business from Scratch
"We are now able to produce top quality signs for leading retailers between three and four times faster than at my previous employer," Baldursson said. "Our customers are delighted at the quality of the signs and the low cost of the machine means that it has already paid for itself." [top] 

Expanding Your Business with CNC Routers
"A Techno CNC router paid for itself on the first job by producing an order of aluminum signs with acrylic letters for a bookstore chain in about 1/10 the time that would have been required to produce them by hand. The push-through acrylic letters had to be produced to demanding tolerances that would have been difficult or impossible to meet by hand." [top] 

CNC Router Cuts Time for Large Exterior Sign Projects from Months to Weeks 
"Recently, the company invested in a computer numerical control (CNC) router that automatically cuts out sign components to higher levels of accuracy in a fraction of the time. The result is that Express Signcraft can now complete a similar project in a few weeks." [top] 

Solid Surface Fabrication

New Business Opportunities for Solid Surface Specialist
"Using a low-cost, PC-based CNC router to generate cutting paths has brought new possibilities to Windbound Company's work with Dupont Corian® solid surface and expanded business opportunities significantly." [top] 

Fabricator is Excited with "Sinking" Profits
"A north-central Texas solid surface fabricator realized that by using CNC technology to improve sink mounts, the company could install more sinks in less time using fewer router bits." [top]

Woodworking

CNC helps Culin & Colella diversify and start furniture business in USA as seen on woodworkingnetwork.com.
"Architectural Millwork Shop Sells Modular Furniture Online By Bill Esler 03/01/2012 "[top]

CNC Router Reduces Cost and Improves Accuracy of
Wooden Boats

"Travis Hickman has implemented a new process in which the boat is measured with a laser transit. The measurements are used to generate a 3D model of the boat. The 3D model is used to create a program to produce the boards on a Techno computer numerical control (CNC) router. " [top]

CNC Router Pays for Itself in Nine Months
"In the first nine months of using the machine, the company produced a variety of pieces including decorated rafter ends, signs with elaborate lettering and logos, arched door frames, and $30,000 worth of shutters. Most of these projects would have taken days or weeks to do by hand, if they could have been done at all." [top] 

CNC Router Helps Start Production Woodworking Business
"An inexpensive but highly accurate and productive computerized numerical control (CNC) Router has helped a CNC programmer start a successful new production woodworking business. Brian Whitehurst previously worked for a reseller of leading high-end CNC programming software, helping customers solve difficult programming challenges." [top]

Maker of Custom Pool Cues Increases
Creativity and Sales by 50%
 
"The Techno CNC Router has freed both Josey and his customers from creative limits and they can let their imaginations run wild. This new freedom in the design of inlays on the cues has attracted new customers and has increased sales significantly in only one year" [top] 

CNC Gantry Milling Machine Reduces Time to Produce
Pool Cue Points by 75% to 80% 

"We used to produce inlays and the points themselves working from patterns on a pantograph-type mill,” McDaniel said. “Now we design the points in CAD and then cut out both the prongs and the inlay on the mill. The new method reduces cutting time, is more accurate and provides unlimited design flexibility." [top] 

Four-Axis CNC Router Boosts Gun Stock
Production 200% to 300%
 
"Previously, the company used the pantograph to carve out inlets and other areas in the gun stocks. It was a back-breaking process that was both slow and inaccurate. The four-axis CNC machine can carve the cutouts in about one-fifth the time it took to do them by hand." [top] 

Woodworkers Can Expand Business by
Using Computerized Router
 
"Designer Woodworking is one of the latest wood working businesses to benefit from automation, although not in the large-scale, mass-production sense of the term. The company still does mostly one-of-a-kind jobs, but by doing them on a computer-controlled router, its level of efficiently matches that of mass-production operations. This efficiency has opened a wealth of new business opportunities as a result." [top] 

Time for Creating Curved Millwork from 8000 Hrs to 4000 Hrs 
"The router also improved the accuracy of the work by a factor of ten, helping Culin & Collela deliver curved molding, cabinets, and bookshelves that drew praise from the architect on the project. Creating large curved wood pieces by hand would have meant making a trammel and physically swinging an arc to figure out the radii of curves."[top] 

Sporting Goods Market Receives Increased Accuracy and Cost Reduction 
"In the past, manufacturers typically used duplicators or power tools to build complicated components in volumes too low for expensive automated machines. The new routers substantially improve production of these components by duplicating the computer-aided design geometry used to define the part geometry to an accuracy of ±0.1 mm. often; this makes it possible to improve the performance of the product by increasing its geometrical complexity." [top] 

CNC Routers Help Carpenters Win New Business, Increase Accuracy, and Cut Costs 
"As an example of how these improvements can be accomplished, Unique Woodworking & Carving Inc., Elk Grove Village, Illinois, brought in $130,000 in additional revenues last year that can be attributed directly to the company's CNC router. In its first year of operation, the $16,000 router paid for itself many times over. The use of the CNC machine has made the company more competitive on custom jobs by allowing them to charge lower set-up fees than the competition." [top] 

CNC Router "Shoots" Production of Gun Stocks
Through the Roof!

"We no longer advertise and yet our volume keeps increasing,” says Shuster. “With the four-axis CNC router, we’re now able to produce replacement stocks for anyone who wants one."[top] 

Low-Cost CNC Router Helps Create Profitable
After-Hours Business
 
"A low cost router helps a Rochester, New York man run a profitable woodworking business in the time he has left over after working a 40 hour per week job and running a store evenings and weekends. Ron Gatz has long had a talent for designing and building novelty items from wood. One of his most popular creations, for example, is a cat’s head that holds food and water bowls and sells for $12." [top] 

Metal Casting Patterns Produced on CNC Router Costing One-Fourth Normal Price 
"Millennium Patterns, Leeds, Alabama, produces wooden and plastic metal casting patterns on a CNC router that costs only ¼ as much as those normally used for the task. When the pattern industry switched to CNC several years ago, most companies purchased small machining centers that cost in the area of $80,000 including programming software." [top] 

Gun Case Manufacturer Finds Increased
Production with CNC Router 

(As seen in the September 2005 issue of Wood and Wood Products) 
"When Champion Safe used power tools to produce racks for its gun cases, each person could only produce enough parts for 20 to 30 safes per day. To increase productivity, the Provo, UT-based company invested in a CNC router that works unattended to produce parts of any shape based on a computer program. Now a single person can produce all the parts needed for 120 safes in one day. This switch to automated routing increased Champion’s productivity by 400 percent." [top] 

16-Year-Old Entrepreneur Builds Successful Woodworking Business with CNC Router
(As seen in the December 2005 issue of Wood and Wood Products) 
"Like millions of Americans, Richard Foster dreamed of establishing his independence and financial security by developing his own business based on doing what he loves to do, which is woodworking. But, because he is only 16 years old, Foster faced a series of challenges that his older entrepreneurial peers would probably have a great deal of difficulty imagining." [top] 

One-man Shop Sells Components Worldwide
(As seen in the December 2007 issue of Cabinet Maker) 
"Originally a manual craftsman, working out of a 15 by 15-foot space in his basement, Farmer now relies on a Techno LC Series 4896 model CNC router for "just about every job" he does." I love this machine so much," he declares, "I just bought a second one." [top] 

CNC Router Helps Shipping Case Producer Reduce Lead Time from 10 to 4 Weeks 
"Don Holcombe started producing shipping cases because he had a large telescope and no way to transport it. He looked for a way to increase production through automation and discovered the Techno LC series computer numerical control (CNC) router. “The Techno router has reduced the time needed to cut out the shell of a case from 30 minutes to 6 minutes while at the same time greatly improving accuracy,” Holcombe said." [top] 



Related Articles: CNC Education, Custom Orthotics, Foam Fabrication, Jewelry Manufacturing, Lasers, Model Making, Musical Instruments, PC Board Manufacturing, Plastic Fabrication, Prototyping, Sign Making, Solid Surface Fabrication and Woodworking