The What and Why of CNC

Computer numerical control (CNC) is a software-based method of moving tools and machinery. This method has traditionally been under the purview of factories and manufacturing facilities and well beyond the reach of a garage tinkerer. CNC machines have arms and carriages that can hold mills, grinders, lasers, and other cutting tools that move in multiple axes to shape an object via preprogrammed movement commands.

Our objective in this chapter is to provide a basic understanding of CNC from a hobbyist’s/tinkerer’s perspective as we prepare to take a deep dive into obtaining, operating, and customizing our own machine.

In this chapter, we will cover the following topics:

  • Branches of CNC machining
  • Differing approaches ...

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