Here's Serena's basics of manufacturing:
- What is the design of your part? If the part's feature is circular: use a lathe (like how they make baseball bats!). If the part is basically cutting away material in straight paths: use a mill or drill press (which makes holes). If it's super intricate, use an EDM (Electric Discharge Machine) but chances are you won't need one right away.
- It's all about positioning. Where does the tool go? Define the paths on paper (or in your head) before you even get CLOSE to a machine. Easy enough. Actually sounds kinda fun.
- Figure out how the machine (mill, lathe, EDM) works. A basic shop class will take care of this. Most of the hard work is done in your head.
- Manufacture your part! See...it wasn't that hard!
Next post: my experience with EDMs and the Intron, a tensile testing machine.