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CNC Routers: Frequently Asked Questions

CNC machinery plays an invaluable role in commercial woodworking. Unlike standard routers, CNC routers can produce hundreds of pieces in a short time. They can also reduce the number of errors that occur in production runs, often eliminating them. If you are considering investing in a CNC router, but you have questions about their design and operation, the answers below can be helpful:

How many axes can a CNC router have?

Unless a router is a multiplexed machine that has auxiliary and linear axes, it will have a maximum of nine axes. In a nine axes router, there are three primary linear axes (X, Y, and Z), three primary rotary axes (A, B, C), and three secondary linear axes (U, V, and W).

How large can a CNC router’s cutting table be?

The cutting tables of CNC routers come in a variety of sizes, with large sizes being common. For example, an industrial router that is used in the boat building industry could have a table size that exceeds 40’ x 20’. If a company needs an uncommonly large cutting table, a router with the necessary table size can usually be designed.

What is the average lifespan of a CNC router?

The lifespan of a router depends largely on its construction grade—hobby grade, midgrade, or industrial grade. Hobby grade routers can have a lifespan of less than ten years; midgrade routers can have a lifespan of roughly fifteen years; and industrial grade routers can last for decades. Beyond construction grade, a router’s lifespan is determined by how well it is maintained, how frequently it is used, and whether it is used as intended.

What is the complete price range for CNC routers?

The price range for CNC routers is extremely broad. The cheapest hobby grade models can cost less than $1,000, while the most expensive industrial grade models can reach the seven-figure mark.

Is buying a CNC router used a good option?

It depends on the machine’s grade. Because hobby grade and midgrade routers do not have a long lifespan, buying them used does not offer much value. Buying industrial routers used can deliver great value.

What is the best way to go about buying a router used?

When you buy a router used, you should take steps to ensure that you buy a quality machine. Those steps are:

• Buy from an experienced seller of used woodworking machinery
• Check the seller’s business history
• Be sure the machine has a spotless maintenance record
• Inspect the machine for wear before you buy it

If you are not able to inspect the machine in person, or you are not qualified to evaluate woodworking machinery, have someone else perform the inspection for you.

How long will one need to train to operate a CNC router?

Training can take from a few weeks to a few months, depending on the availability of training resources and the time you can dedicate to training. Often, training consists of a combination of computer based training and first person training.

Call RT Machine for Your CNC Machine Needs

RT Machine sells new and used industrial woodworking machinery, including CNC routers. If you need a router that we do not have in stock, our machine locator service can find the router in another inventory and have it shipped to your location.

Buying a CNC router can be a big decision, one that you should not have to face without expert advice. If you need help choosing a CNC router, call RT Machine today.

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