Contract Machining

Technical Information on Machining

Machining1. Dimensioning  Cutting rough sawn hardwood (planks, beams, cladding etc) to size: Useful for jobs where a rough finish is required, e.g., exterior cladding, or where dimensioned pieces are going to be worked with hand tools to make turned articles, carvings or small items of furniture.

2. Thicknessing and/or Planing  Reducing the thickness of a board to the required size and taking the rough surface off before sanding and finishing. Hardwood is cut in certain thicknesses. Common thicknesses include 1/2", 1", 1 1/4" 1 1/2", 2", 2 1/2", 3" and 4". If you need a board of wood measuring, for example, 6' long by 8" wide by 3/4" thick, when it's finished, you will have to start with a board measuring 1" thick and reduce the thickness as required. Thicknessing is also used to straighten boards that are uneven on one or both faces. Planing will remove the rough sawn surface including saw marks from a piece of sawn hardwood; the resulting surface will—depending on the quality of the planer—be much smoother, but not as smooth as a sanded surface. Planers also sometimes leave marks on the wood, slightly raised areas, especially if there's a chink out of the planer blade (which there shouldn't be).

(Less there be any confusion, the length of a piece of wood is measured along the grain, the width is measured across the grain, and the thickness is the measure between the two largest surfaces of a plank or board.)

3. Moulding  Manufacturing cladding, panelling, flooring, skirting, architraves, beads etc. Useful for architects or builders who are working on projects that require particular specifications on cladding, flooring etc. Moulding is usually done to order from the mill's own stock; but most mills will run hardwood from other sources through their machines.