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From the knowledges of 3D printing service to specific order-related issues, find answers that can help you accelerate your innovation with 3DSPRO's comprehensive FAQs session.

What are the main differences between 3D printed metal parts and CNC machined metal parts?

The main differences between 3D-printed metal parts and CNC-machined metal parts lie in their manufacturing processes, material properties, precision, and design capabilities.

Manufacturing Process

● 3D Printing: An additive process that builds parts layer by layer from metal powder or wire.

● CNC Machining: A subtractive process that removes material from a solid block to shape the final part.

Material Properties

3D Printing: Can sometimes use weaker material approximations, although advancements are improving this aspect.

CNC Machining: Delivers the full properties of engineering materials, with parts generally exhibiting higher strength.

Precision and Accuracy

3D Printing: Achieves good dimensional accuracy, but high precision can be challenging.

CNC Machining: Highly precise, allowing for tighter tolerances and better mechanical properties.


Design Capabilities

3D Printing: Ideal for complex geometries and internal structures that are difficult or impossible to machine.

CNC Machining: Has some geometric restrictions but can produce parts in any material that is rigid enough to be cut.

Surface Finish

3D Printing: Often requires post-processing to achieve a smooth surface.

CNC Machining: Provides superior surface quality, with parts often ready for use without additional finishing.

Cost and Volume

3D Printing: Generally more cost-effective for small volumes due to minimal setup costs.

CNC Machining: More cost-effective at higher volumes, with excellent repeatability.

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