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CNC machining vs. die casting: What’s the difference – HJY

CNC Machine vs. Die Casting: What's the Difference

For the manufacture or processing of metal parts, there are many types of processes to choose from, the most commonly used are die casting and CNC machining, both of which are technologies for processing raw materials into products.

Some people may still not be able to distinguish between the two processing technologies. Here is a deeper look at today’s topic from the editor.

Die casting process principle

Usually, it is not easy for people to distinguish between die casting and casting.

Casting is to pour liquid metal into a mold in the shape of a part, while die casting is to fill the liquid metal into the cavity at a relatively fast speed under high pressure. And today we focus on analyzing the die casting process. Commonly used materials for die-casting include zinc alloy, aluminum alloy, and magnesium alloy.

After the liquid metal is filled into the cavity and waits for molding, it is then processed in the next step, such as surface treatment. Die casting parts are suitable for various industries, such as automobiles, home appliances, machinery, beauty equipment, etc.

Die casting machine workshop

CNC machining process principle

CNC machining refers to the use of a control system to do craft cutting on a workpiece. CNC machining can process parts with high precision and complex shapes.

The most common types of CNC machining are turning and milling. Turning means that the workpiece rotates, but the tool does not rotate; milling means that the workpiece does not rotate, but the tool does not move; no matter which method can process parts with complex shapes.

CNC-Machining Center-scaled

How to choose die casting and CNC?

In fact, there is a big difference between die-casting and CNC machining, and there is a basis for choosing which machining method to choose.

1.In terms of shape, both die-casting and CNC machining can produce complex shapes, but if it is an anomalous part or strict tolerance, die-casting is difficult to achieve, so there will be more possibilities to choose CNC machining.

CNC machining parts are high-precision, such as turning, which can process straight cylinders, inclined cylinders, arcs, complex threads, grooves and even rotating surfaces, such as hyperboloids. Typical CNC turning parts include shift knobs, pulleys, axis etc.

Milling CNC precision parts are mainly used in various complex planes, including shell-shaped parts such as cams, molds, blades, propellers, etc. Typical CNC milling parts are divided into: plane parts, surface parts and angle steel parts.

2.Both die-casting and CNC are suitable for mass production. If mass production is required, the effect of die-casting will be better. First of all, the manufacturing cost of die-casting mold is relatively high, which is the first processing method for a large number of consistent parts, while CNC is more suitable for small batch production. .

The focus of die-casting is the quality of the mold. After the mold is manufactured, the die-casting process is relatively fast, but the manufacturing cost of the mold is relatively high, and the design also takes a certain amount of time, so the manufactured mold is more suitable for mass production.

3.In terms of cost and material usage, the metal material used for die casting rarely produces waste because it pours molten metal into the mold. However, CNC machining is a cutting method, so some debris and residual materials may be distributed around the machine, which needs to be cleaned again or recycled again.

4.The quality of the mold can directly affect the shape and details of the die-casting. Many edges and corners can be reflected in the mold, which reduces the need for secondary processing after the die-casting parts are formed. There are many cutting methods for CNC machining. Through CNC Machined parts may require secondary machining.


The choice of processing method is based on the state, quantity and geometry of the required parts. Whether it is die casting or CNC, they both have their own advantages.

Some customers like high precision, so they can choose CNC machining. Some customers need high production efficiency, and large batches can choose die casting.

People Also Ask

Not necessarily, these two are different processes, choose according to different needs, not which one has higher precision is better.

This is generally the case, but of course it also depends on the production level and type of machined parts.

They are processed in different ways, one is to use a mold, and the other is to use a computer program to control the cutting material. More details can be found in this article, which also has a detailed explanation.

This article was re-edited on May 29, 2023

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