Machine Tool | Definition , Types , Classification of Machine tool

Types Of Machine Tool 

Definition of machine tool
A machine tool is a non-portable power operated and reasonably valued device or system of devices in which energy is expended to produce jobs of desired size, shape and surface finish by removing excess material from the preformed blanks in the form of chips with the help of cutting tools moved past the work surface(s).

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Basic functions of machine tools
Machine tools basically produce geometrical surfaces like flat, cylindrical or any contour on the preformed blanks by machining work with the help of cutting tools.

The physical functions of a machine tool in machining are:

  • Firmly holding the blank and the tool.
  • Transmit motions to the tool and the blank.
  • Provide power to the tool-work pair for the machining action.
  • Control of the machining parameters, i.e., speed, feed and depth of cut.
cutting tool at metal working
metalworking industry. cutting tool processing steel metal spiral pinion or worm screw shaft on lathe machine in workshop.

Classification of machine tools

Number of types of machine tools gradually increased till mid 20th century and after that started decreasing based on group technology.
However, machine tools are broadly classified as follows:

According to direction of major axis:

  • Horizontal – center lathe, horizontal boring machine etc.
  • Vertical – vertical lathe, vertical axis milling machine etc.
  • Inclined – special (e.g. for transfer machines).

According to purpose of use:

  • General purpose – e.g. center lathes, milling machines, drilling, machines etc.
  • Single purpose – e.g. facing lathe, roll turning lathe etc.
  • Special purpose – for mass production.

According to degree of automation:

  • Non-automatic – e.g. center lathes, drilling machines etc.
  • Semi-automatic – capstan lathe, turret lathe, hobbing machine etc.
  • Automatic – e.g., single spindle automatic lathe, swiss type automatic lathe, CNC milling machine etc.According to size:
  • Heavy duty – e.g., heavy duty lathes (e.g. ≥ 55 kW), boring mills, planning machine, horizontal boring machine etc.
  • Medium duty – e.g., lathes – 3.7 ~ 11 kW, column drilling machines, milling machines etc.
  • Small duty – e.g., table top lathes, drilling machines, milling machines.
  • Micro duty – e.g., micro-drilling machine etc.

According to blank type:

  • Bar type (lathes).
  • Chucking type (lathes).
  • Housing type.

According to precision:

  • Ordinary – e.g., automatic lathes.
  • High precision – e.g., Swiss type automatic lathes.

According to number of spindles:

  • Single spindle – center lathes, capstan lathes, milling machines etc.
  • Multi spindle – multi spindle (2 to 8) lathes, gang drilling machines etc.

According to type of automation:

  • Fixed automation – e.g., single spindle and multi spindle lathes.
  • Flexible automation – e.g., CNC milling machine.

According to configuration:

  1. Stand alone type – most of the conventional machine tools.
  2. Machining system (more versatile) – e.g., transfer machine, machining center, FMS etc.
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