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CNC Machine Maintenance Tips

Computer numerical control (CNC) machines have revolutionized modern manufacturing. They provide a high level of efficiency, accuracy, and consistency in manufacturing precision parts. Examples of CNC machines include lathes, grinders, and routers.

Like other machines, CNC machines require regular maintenance to maintain efficiency and reliability. However, maintenance can be a complicated task that requires specialized knowledge. Rubin Engineering & Sales is a premier maintenance and repair provider for all kinds of machine tool components, current and out-of-production. Here’s what you need to know about CNC machine maintenance.

Importance of CNC Machine Maintenance

Because CNC machines are such an important part of any manufacturing operation, unscheduled downtime can be costly for a company’s current and future business relationships. In fact, CNC machine failure can cost thousands of dollars in unfulfilled shipping deadlines and hours of operation. Therefore, consistent CNC machine maintenance is necessary to ensure that the equipment functions when and as it should.

Here is a breakdown of the different types of CNC machine maintenance tasks you can perform on your own and with the help of a maintenance specialist.

Daily Maintenance

CNC Machine Maintenance Tips
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At the end of every day, you can perform these simple maintenance duties to ensure your machine’s optimal performance:

  • Test that hydraulic fluids are at the correct level
  • Check that hydraulic pressure is 4.5 MPa
  • Check and replenish the lube levels if necessary
  • Check the cooling system (if applicable)
  • Remove chips from the chip pan
  • Grease stainless steel covers that seem dry
  • Clean surfaces like windows and lights

You should maintain a preventive maintenance checklist for your CNC machines to ensure that these tasks are performed thoroughly every day.

Monthly Maintenance

A monthly CNC machine maintenance schedule contains slightly more extensive tests and checks than a daily schedule. Perform the following activities for monthly maintenance:

  • Clean the coolant tank, getting rid of any chips, oil, or sludge
  • Remove and clean the jaws and chuck
  • Clean the radiators, straightening the radiator fins
  • Keep the machine level
  • Dispose of and replace the hydraulic oil
  • Drain and refill the coolant
  • Inspect wipers and replace those that are damaged
  • Replace suction and line filters

Yearly Maintenance

Yearly CNC maintenance is quite detailed and requires a specialist’s inspection. When you make an annual appointment with a maintenance and repair specialist, they will perform the following activities:

  • Check whether the headstock or tailstock has tapered
  • Inspect the spindle for end or radial play
  • Check for runouts in the chuck cylinder
  • Check for turret inclination and parallelism
  • Run a backlash program on the X and Z axis to determine whether it needs adjustments

Maintain Your CNC Machine with Rubin Engineering & Sales

A well-maintained CNC machine produces reliable and precise components. Hiring a specialist to take care of maintenance tasks ensures your CNC machine can consistently produce these results. Rubin Engineering & Sales offers the most comprehensive CNC maintenance and replacement services for all kinds of CNC machines. Contact us today to find out how we can help keep your production running as smoothly as possible.

Choosing the Right Ball Screw

At Rubin Engineering & Sales, we service and repair modern and vintage machine tools. Our primary focus is out-of-production or obsolete components that are difficult to find or repair, including drives, electric controls, chip conveyors, way covers, spindles, and ball screws. Our refurbished components from top manufacturers meet or surpass OEM standards.

Many machines rely on ball screws to convert the motor’s rotations to linear motion. The ball screw improves machinery by delivering smoother motion and load transfer. Below we’ll provide an overview of ball screws to help you understand how they work.

What is a Ball Screw?

Choosing the Right Screw Ball
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A ball screw is an actuator that converts rotational movement into linear motion. The components of a ball screw include a screw shaft with helical grooves and a ball nut. The screw shaft and the nut—which contains the balls—glide along a helical path as the parts rotate. The ball nut transmits forces to a dynamic or stationary load and produces high repeatability, precision, and accuracy.

Ball screws are ideal for applications requiring linear load transfer at prolonged high speeds, with better accuracy, efficiency, and smoothness. These mechanical devices provide the following advantages:

  • Low torque and high efficiency from a smaller motor
  • Increased positional accuracy with higher accuracy grades
  • Cooler operational temperatures and low friction
  • Enables adjustment to increase or decrease preload

How Does a Ball Screw Work?

The ball screw nut and screw have matching grooves in a helical pattern. The balls roll between these grooves, and this is the only contact point between these components. The nut features a ball return system that recycles the deflected balls as the screw or nut rotates. The return system provides a continuous path for the balls to return to the opposite end of the nut. As balls exit the return path, they realign in the nut thread raceway of the ball screw, where they recirculate again in a circuit.

Rubin Engineering & Sales for Ball Screw Service and Repair

Ball screws are vital to providing smooth and continuous linear motion to CNC machines and other equipment. They convert the rotational motion of a motor to linear motion that can carry the load along the helical grooves of the screw shaft using precisely fit balls. Ball screws provide low-friction, accurate, efficient, and versatile operation.

At Rubin Engineering & Sales, we are experts in the repair, service, and procurement of obsolete and out-of-production parts. Our services have a proven track record for the last 30 years, and we work with some of the most well-known companies in the industry. Our quick turnaround times and extensive catalog of high-quality CNC machine parts ensure that you can find what you need and receive it on time. Request a quote today to learn more about our products and capabilities.