Robotic Machine Tending Guide for Beginners


CNC is the center of every manufacturing facility or shop that executes machining operations regardless of its volume and size. Today, numerous emerging technologies are merging with traditional machining to enhance part quality and productivity. Still, the basic challenge is how to make products and parts better and faster at a minimal cost.

Understanding CNC Machining

CNC machining is a manufacturing procedure where pre-programmed computer software determines the movement of factory machinery and tools. The procedure can come in handy to regulate a vast range of intricate machinery. These range from; routers, lathes, grinders, and mills. CNC machining facilitates prompt execution of three-dimensional cutting functions.

CNC (computer numerical control) overrides manual control limitations where human operators are required to stimulate and handle the commands of machining tools through wheels, buttons, and levers. A CNC system could be similar to a set of normal computer components to the onlooker. However, CNC machining comprises software consoles and programs and these differentiate it from many other computation forms.

Automation in the Workplace

For long, administering automation in the workplace has been one of the most effective ways of achieving robotic machine tending goals. CAM/CAD software eases and accelerates changeover from designing to part machining. Advancements in CNC controls, Ethernet communications, and pitchout fixtures facilitate faster and more precise configurations and changeovers.

Enhanced tooling and automatic tool changers cut down cycle times. Additionally, high-pressure programmable systems, automatic bar feeders, and other machine tool components facilitate untended bar stock machining.

One of the bottlenecks that stand in the way of enhancing productivity in many CNC shops is the fact that machine operators spend lots of time loading and unloading work pieces from one machine tool. This task can be labor intensive and the best solution would be robotic machine tending. 

The Truth about Robotic Automation for Computer Numerical Control Shops

Self-contained standardized robotic machine tending systems are solid, reasonably priced tools that facilitate automation of loading and discharging of work pieces in CNC shops regardless of their size. While these machines need fewer investments and space, they have similar advantages with custom robotic automation systems. These include:

·         Enhanced Productivity

Unlike humans, robots never take breaks, sick days off, or vacations. Once they are set up, they load and unload continuously until the task is finalized without the intervention of a human operator. This gives the machine operators sufficient time to execute other critical activities in the workplace such as; tending different CNC machines rather than one.

·         Dependability

Modern-day robots are specially designed to operate repetitively, continuously, and meticulously for prolonged periods. The robot arm can execute tasks for years without requiring maintenance.

·         Consistency

Computer numerical control machine tools from original equipment manufacturers are more effective than before. Apart from the robust construction, they come with numerous features that guarantee precise repeatable results. It’s worth mentioning that failure to load a work piece accurately results in poor quality products. A robot is designed to always load a work piece, in the same way, to achieve consistency in terms of part quality.

·         Flexibility

As customer demands diversify, part specifications will change triggering demand for new part orders. The robotic load and unload system allows operators to make changes fast. Further, since the machine can operate alone, human workers can focus on other important tasks. This saves the company from the expenses that come with hiring more personnel.

What’s Stopping CNC Shops from Adopting Robotic Machine Tending?

Many CNC shops opine that robotic automation involves the use of complex systems that require massive investment in terms of equipment, hiring highly skilled workers, training, and having to wait for long for a return on investment.

What these establishments may not know is that modern robotic machine tending gadgets can easily be integrated into their shops, easily configured by a CNC machine operator without the need for professional training, and self-installed next to the machine component.


CNC shops can integrate robotic machine tending gadgets in their operations with minimal struggle. These would go a long way in enhancing productivity, employee safety, as well as accelerate return on investment.