The Swiss Difference: What Makes Swiss Turning Machines Unique

CNC MachineCNC machines are a common sight in every machinist’s workshop. Swiss-type ones, however, aren’t that popular – at least until these past few years. More and more people continue to make the move to Swiss-type machines over the typical CNC ones. It’s no longer surprising to see workshops equipped with these machines.

Nevertheless, Berkness Swiss says it’s a curious matter that Swiss turning machines are slowly being favored by many professionals, so let’s take a look at what makes these machines different.

Z-Axis Motion

Typically, you would use the tool to control the Z-axis motion of the machine, but this is different in Swiss-type machines. Rather than the tool, you get to move the stock. The turning tool here is stationary, so it’s the stock that’s responsible for acting on Z readings. You have to program it a little differently if you want to get the Z-axis offsets right.

Guide Bushing

In other machines, you can get away with using guide bushing even if the size isn’t exactly perfect. In the case of Swiss-type ones, however, you need the perfectly sized piece for the job. Otherwise, you will encounter concentricity problems while working on a piece. Appropriate materials for this include carbide, Meehanite, and steel.

Order of Cuts

Another difference is the order of cuts you do when working. Traditionally, you would rough- and finish-turn the item prior to the machining part. But in Swiss-type machines, you machine the bar stock early on. This allows you to OD turn the piece into a groove location, cut it, and continue with the turning.

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All in all, Swiss machines are popular because of these reasons. The best part is that these reasons manage to improve the overall productivity of machinists. Cycling through every piece is much faster and much more efficient using such a type of machine.