Amazing companies choose PROTOTEK for high-quality parts done fast!
Custom CNC – Working with PROTOTEK
Deep capabilities in sheet metal and machining – design, custom CNC machining, manufacturing, finishing, and even complex assemblies.
What do we do?
- Sheet Metal Parts & Assemblies in as Fast as 1-3 Days
- CNC Milled and Turned Parts in as Fast as 1-3 Days
- Complex Parts
- Same Day or Emergency Jobs – Call us Now!
About our fast, flexible personalized service:
- ISO-9001:2015 Certified, ITAR Registered
- Quotes within 24 Hours – Call us if you need it faster!
- Estimates with or without CAD Models
- We Want Complex Jobs – We Quote Parts Others Reject
Because every CNC job is unique, and many require special considerations for materials, finishing, custom work, and/or urgent delivery – our custom CNC quotes are turned around by seasoned estimators who confirm all aspects of your job. No automated quoting that works on cookie-cutter algorithms here to limit your project or your imagination. We figure out the best way to run your job first – and that’s why we deliver so many rapid CNC jobs that other shops turn away.
Our custom CNC services & other capabilities start below but they don’t stop there. Want to talk to someone about a job, upload a file for quote or call us now.
NO CAD MODEL, NO PROBLEM
QUOTES WITHIN 24HRS
PARTS & ASSEMBLIES – ONE STOP SHOP
NO ORDER TOO SMALL
EXPEDITED PARTS IN 1-3 DAYS
- Manufacturing Design Assistance
- Laser Cutting - Punching
- Material Graining
- Drilling - Countersinking - Tapping
- Forming - Bending
- Hardware Insertion
- Mechanical Assembly
- TIG, MIG, Spot Welding & Weld Grinding
- Welded Assemblies & Frames
- Up to 5-Axis Milling
- Horizontal & Vertical Milling
- 9-Axis Mill-Turn
- CNC Routing
- Surface Grinding
- Lapping & Polishing
- Welding / Post-Weld Machining
- Heli-Coils / Hardware Inserts
Cutting & Engraving
- Wire EDM Cutting
- Waterjet Cutting
- CO2 Laser
- Quality Engineering Assistance
- CMM Inspection Services
- First Article and AQL Inspections
- Compliance and Document Control
Plastic & Composite Fabrication
- Plastic Thermoforming - Bending
- Cryogenic Deflashing & Deburring
- Plastic Welding
- Thermal, Adhesive, & Mechanical Bonding
- Vapor Polishing
- Radiological Film-Cutting Services
- Manufacturing Design Assistance
- Tooling and Fixture Fabrication
- Electro-Mechanical Services
- Welded, Mechanical, & Small Parts Assembly
- Wire Harnessing
- Laser Cutting – Polymers & Metals
- Insert Installation
- Powder Coating
- Chemical Agent Resistant Coating
- Silk Screening
- Laser Engraving
- Chem Film
- Black Oxide
- Bead Blasting
Defining Custom in CNC Machining
Custom CNC machining is the process of creating a part that is unique rather than based on an existing design or mold. Unlike mass-production, custom CNC work starts in the design phase using CAD (computer aided design) programs and is then created through the CNC machining process. CNC machining can produce parts with exact dimensions to within a thousandth of an inch. That’s why many people leverage CNC machining to produce exact, complex and intricate components.
Benefits of Custom CNC Work
Custom CNC work can be beneficial in a variety of ways. From creating prototypes or improving upon an existing parts design (to aid in efficiency or durability), to replacing parts for old equipment that are no longer manufactured or available, the ability to use CNC has changed the way parts and larger components are made. This type of technology is crucial to many businesses and industries and has changed the way parts and prototyping are done. The ability to offer custom CNC work has changed the face of machining and part production.
Situations Where Custom CNC Machining is Necessary
Every machining need is different. Some are more repeatable, while others require very complex cuts, integrations and finishes. Situations where custom CNC machining services and processes are required include (but aren’t limited to):
- Re-engineering parts and components
- Advancing existing parts and components
- Creating parts and components with various details, cuts and finishes
- Producing parts for new technology
Custom CNC Machining Processes
There are many different types of CNC machines and processes that perform a wide range of manufacturing tasks. Processes involved in CNC machining are typically referred to as a subtractive manufacturing process. Machines like routers, lathes, and mills remove material from an oversized piece of stock to form and create the desired part. Here are several standard processes and related machinery when it comes to custom CNC work.
Custom Milling – Milling is one of the most common processes in CNC machining. Mills do most of the milling, drilling, cutting, and even tapping to create the desired part. Mills generally have 3-axis capabilities to create such parts, working on the X, Y, and Z planes. However, some machines can work with more angles, such as 5-axis milling machines, allowing for the creation of more complex designs.
Custom Turning – Turning parts requires the use of a lathe machine. Using stock material that is round or cylindrical like tubing or solid round stock, lathes can produce parts such as shafts, cams shafts, hubs, driveshafts and rollers, and maintain highly precise dimensions. This process involves rotating or spinning the shaft at very high speeds while using an insert that makes contact with the spinning stock, shearing away small amounts of material quickly to desired depths.
Custom Routing – Routers are used primarily to create specific edges or corners on a part. They can also be used to create grooves, slots, and tracks. Routers use a spinning head with inserts or a specially designed head which spins at a very high speed to remove material quickly.
Custom Surface Grinding and Polishing – Surface grinding can be done by hand or by a CNC machine. CNC machines are preferred for precise grinding. Grinding is used to remove excess materials after other machining processes or to smooth out welds. It is also used for situations where the part requires a very clean and smooth surface.
Other parts may be ground and polished for aesthetic reasons, such as parts consisting of chrome, brass, or bronze (see our complete list of materials below).
Custom Welding and Post Weld Machining – Unlike machining, welding is an additive process by which a worker or welding machine uses electricity and filler rods to fuse metal parts together using heat and then cooling. This allows parts to be permanently joined together to create a wide variety of things, from simple metal boxes to house electrical components to carts and even rocket boosters.
In many cases after a series of parts have been welded together to create the overall desired piece, it may be sent to a CNC machine to fix any distortion caused by the high heat and clean the part up to match the desired specifications.
Custom Heli-Coils and Hardware Inserts – Some parts may require the use of heli-coils or other types of hardware inserts instead of using the tapping process alone. Heli-coils are inserts that, when placed, create a thread for bolts. Hardware inserts are similar and provide solutions for threading bolts or helping to fix parts in place.
Heli-coils are also great for repair situations. For example, if a threaded blind hole (a hole that doesn’t go completely through a part) is stripped, damaged, or needs to be resized, the hole can be drilled to a larger diameter, and a heli-coil can be installed.
Custom CNC Machining Materials and Material Characteristics
Custom CNC work can be done using a variety of materials. The best option will depend on the requirements of your specific project. Materials include:
|Custom CNC Materials||Grade / Alloy||Heat Treatable||Tensile Strength (Ultimate, PSI)||Fatigue Strength (PSI)||Hardness (Brinell)||Custom CNC Machinability (AISI Rating)||Custom CNC Materials||Grade / Alloy||Heat Treatable||Tensile Strength (Ultimate, PSI)||Fatigue Strength (PSI)||Hardness (Brinell)||Custom CNC Machinability (AISI Rating)|
|Brass||C46400||No||55000 - 88000||14500||82||30%|
|Silicon Aluminum Bronze||C64200||No||75000-102000||50000||N/A||60%|
CNC machining is used in many facets of manufacturing, from creating mass-produced items like car parts and kitchenware to constructing probes that are sent to the far reaches of the solar system. Custom CNC machining fills a niche to create, reproduce or repair parts and these functions serve an invaluable role in modern industry.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Are you a broker or a manufacturer?
We are a full service sheet metal and machining manufacturer with four U.S. production facilities across the nation allowing us to deliver your high-quality parts FAST.
Does PROTOTEK manufacture in higher-volume quantities?
We focus on prototypes to low-volume production and can do larger runs. All our parts, from one – to 100 – to 1,000+ are always delivered with production-quality finish.
What are your payment terms?
PROTOTEK offers Net 30 payment terms for established customers with good credit.
What file formats are required or suggested for requesting a quote?
We accept .STP, .DWG, .IGS, .PDF, Parasolid files, and more.
What if I need help with my part design?
Our estimators are on hand to discuss your specific job needs. Our expert team can help you move your project smoothly through the design process and on to delivery.
If I do not have a CAD model, can you quote/fabricate my parts?
Yes, we can work directly from your drawings. Additional engineering charge (NRC) may apply depending on complexity.
How do I submit my NDA and other document requests?
Submit your NDA, Approved Vendor and other document requests to your sales rep or estimator.
How long is a quote valid?
Our quotes stand firm for 7 days from the date of issue.
How fast can I get my order?
Lead time for standard orders is 10 business days. Expediting options are available, including emergency service – down to as fast as 1-2 business days, depending on complexity of work and materials.