What is a milling machine?
Milling is the machining process of using rotary cutters to remove material from a workpiece by advancing (or feeding) the cutter into the workpiece at a certain direction. The cutter may also be held at an angle relative to the axis of the tool. Milling covers a wide variety of different operations and machines, on scales from small individual parts to large, heavy-duty gang milling operations. It is one of the most commonly used processes for machining custom parts to precise tolerances.
What is a machining center?
Most CNC milling machine (also called machining centers) are computer controlled vertical mills with the ability to move the spindle vertically along the Z-axis. This extra degree of freedom permits their use in diesinking, engraving applications, and 2.5D surfaces such as relief Sculptures. When combined with the use of conical tools or a ball nose cutter, it also significantly improves brilliant without impacting speed, providing a cost-efficient alternative to most flat-surface hand-engraving work.