What is CNC Lathe Machining?

cnc lathe machining

cnc lathe machining

In today's world, CNC machining plays a vital role in manufacturing. It has given industries the ability to produce parts precisely and repetitively with utmost precision. Such as CNC lathe machines, the introduction of CNC lathe machines in manufacturing industries has brought the revolution. There is hardly any metal and plastic industry that does not use products processed with this technique. The reason to get this article is to provide you with an idea about CNC lathe machines. Also, this article will deliver you a basic understanding of this manufacturing process.

A Computerized Numerically Controlled or CNC lathe machine is a tool that removes the material from the workpiece. It brings the workpiece in desired shape and size with utmost reliability, speed, and accuracy. It is employed for different materials. A CNC lathe is one of the most used and essential material removal processes in today's technological world.

We have gathered all the information you need to know about CNC lathe machines. This article will give you a concise idea about lathe machines' history, types, applications, and benefits. Let's dive in and look at the most crucial technique in the world of CNC machining.

The History of CNC Lathe machining

Lathe machines are used to shape symmetrical wooden parts. The history of lathe machines goes back to 1300 BC in ancient Egypt. Before lathe getting computerized, they were man-operated for the woodworking. Then came the industrial revolution, and lathes machines evolved to become more precise and powerful. Then waterpower and steam usage in lathe machines bring the room for newer applications. And then, the time came where lathe machines were used to produce refined canon series used by the British army during the American Revolutionary War.

The late 20th and 21st centuries are defined by computer technology and the industrial revolution. In 1950, the CNC lathe machine came into existence, changing the industry forever. This machine allows the machinist to pre-program the requirements, making the first hands-off lathe.

What is CNC Lathe machining?

CNC or Computer Numerical Controlled lathe is a machine that cuts the material using the stationary cutting tool. It turns the material with a central spindle for cutting. Because its computer-controlled, the material movement is dictated by the coded instruction given by the computer. With the help of this machine, multiple functions and steps can be programmed at once. It means the workpiece doesn't have to leave the machine in the middle of the manufacturing process.

CNC lathe machine is a versatile machine that makes it an excellent option for various industries. Especially for healthcare, automotive, aerospace, and electronics. It can produce the items of large size such as automobiles frames, airplane engines to small things like garden tools, gears, and surgical instruments. CNC lathe machines can also create flat surfaces, threads, and cylindrical components with inner and outer diameters.

Types for CNC Lathe machines

CNC lathes machines come in many different types to provide you with simple to complex structures of your desired parts. These types have various axes that let you machine your workpiece from different angles without manually switching machine tools. In other CNC lathe machines, the axis depicts how machine tools are set and rotated during the machining process. We have mentioned below the types of CNC lathe machines used for different CNC machining processes.

2-Axis CNC Lathe

In this CNC lathe type, the machine has two linear axes that can be used to perform outer or inner diameter machining (cylindrical machining). It can also perform facing, drilling, and tapping operations at the center of the workpiece. This type of machine can't do milling operations.

3-Axis CNC Lathe

3-axis CNC lathe machines can perform the different operations in the X, Y, and Z axes. It is also used for simple geometry. The parts can be machined from three different angles for milling operations, boring, and tapping with this machine. Helical milling operations with slow sync rotation can also be performed with three-axis CNC lathe machines.

4-Axis CNC Lathe

This type of lathe machine has one additional axis called the A axis. The extra angle gives this machine the ability to perform complex geometrical operations. 4 axis CNC lathe machines are used for heavy-duty equipment, large parts, and complex automotive parts.

5-Axis CNC Lathe

This CNC lathe type provides highly complex and intricate CNC machined parts. 5-axis CNC Lathe machine has 5 different angles X, Y Z with A and B axes. This means it can perform on a workpiece from 5 different directions simultaneously. It can also perform multiple operations such as drilling, milling, tapping, reaming, etc.

We at Worthy Hardware have many different CNC lathe machines in our facility. We have completed35 of CNC lathe machining projects for widespread clients worldwide. And we proudly say that we are the leaders in CNC lathe machining in China. With machining capability to produce simple to complex parts, we have partnered with all sizes of companies. And delivered them high-quality and high-performing products.

How does a CNC lathe machine work?

It is a computerized numerical controlled machine and operates on precise design instructions to machine the part with accurate specifications. In a CNC lathe machine, material or workpiece is held at a place, and spindles rotate it as the cutting tool acts on the workpiece from different angles.

A primary CNC lathe machine performs on two axes with the cutting tool. The rotating action of the workpiece is called "turning." This is why it is also called CNC turning. CNC lathe creates precise round shapes within outer diameter (OD) and inner diameter (ID). Several different structures can be achieved with the help of a CNC lathe machine depending upon the needs and requirements of the industries. CNC lathe machines are widely used in automotive, aerospace, electronics, steel, shipbuilding, oil and gas, mining, and many other countries.

Modern CNC lathe machines can perform operations on additional axes. If the machine includes both X and Y axes and incorporates a second spindle, second turret with other machine tools, they can perform tapping, drilling, milling, and other operations. This helps the manufacturer to produce complex parts. And it also eliminates the need to transfer the workpiece to a different machine for second operations.

What are the benefits of CNC Lathe machining?

CNC lathe machines are widely used in CNC machining operations in different industries around the globe. The precision and accuracy it provides are beyond one's comprehension. In addition to that, it also has many benefits. Let's have a look at some of them.


Mass Production Efficiency

CNC lathe machine uses hydraulic chuck and automatically collects clamping of the workpiece in mass production that doesn't require a skilled operator. It can produce a large number of parts with impressive accuracy with repeatability. Its production efficiency is four times more compared to conventional lathe machines.

Impeccable Accuracy

The computer-controlled lathe machines are incredibly accurate and precise because they are run on the codes fed by the computer. The extra precision means fewer mistakes and lower operation costs. In contrast, manual lathe machines are subjected to human errors.

High Pass Rate

In manual lathe machines, human interaction is primarily required. While in CNC lathe machines, the operator only loads and unloads the workpiece and relies on the machine for accuracy. This automated operation ensures a high product pass rate. If the operator loose the concentration, the rejection rate of the output would be high.

Highly Versatile

CNC lathe machines can produce many products and parts. Such as small surgical instruments to significant automotive components. This machine is highly specialized in creating cylindrical and spherical structures quickly. These structures are hard to produce from other machines.


This was a brief and to-the-point discussion about the CNC lathe machines. CNC lathe machines are the marvel of engineering in these modern times. This machine's ability to produce plane surface to screw threads and simple structure to complex three-dimensional geometries has earned its name in the CNC manufacturing process. It has made the life of an ordinary man easier and revolutionized many industries in different ways. The CNC lathe applications are widespread from the domestic to the industrial.

We made sure this article clear your thoughts about CNC lathe machining. Also, this article will help you decide if you have an upcoming project that requires a CNC lathe machine.

Worthy Hardware is the leading CNC lathe machine service provider from China. With the CNC machining experience that extends over 25+ years, we have delivered thousands of CNC lathe machined parts around the globe. Our highly skilled CNC lathe machine's dedicated labor left no stone unturned to provide you with high quality and your requirement-specific machined parts.

If you are looking for a CNC lathe machine supplier, look no further. Just call us or fill out the form so our customer representative can get back to you with your query and quotation.


Worthy Hardware is a CNC manufacturing and sheet metal fabrication company,including CNC machining services,CNC milling services, CNC turning services, laser cutting services and stamping services.Call us +86-76989919645 or email us [email protected] for more discounts for your projects.