The TRUE COST of CNC machining!

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How much does it cost to make a CNC machined part? The answer depends on a number of variables like the material type, part quantity, dimensional tolerances, lead time, and surface finish. We demonstrate this using the two shock bottom brackets we CNC machined for the landing gear on the DarkAero 1 prototype. They were made in house on our Tormach from 7075-T6 aluminum. Quoting tools from Xometry offer a quick and easy way to see the cost of machining these parts if we were to outsource them. We uploaded a 3D CAD file of the shock bottom bracket to Xometry and then looked at the instant quote numbers to see where the cost might land in production.

Links to tools we use for CNC machining:

Tool Cart –
Anti-Fatigue Mat –
Gear Drawer –
Torque Wrench –

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00:00 – Intro
00:36 – Machining
04:37 – Cost


EivinSukoi says:

Wow $40, but I need to spend $50 for a CNC machine like this , such a bargain 😂.

Lepi Doptera says:

The real cost with machining is… if you do it in the US. I had a couple of aluminum parts made once. The quotes were all over the place but nothing in the US was less than $500. I finally had it made in China for $120. Sorry, guys, but you can't compete, no matter how much you want to (and I know that a lot of you don't actually want to compete even against the shop on the other end of the street).

Someoneelse says:

A friend of mine used to work as a prototype machinist and teacher for machinists, and he always said, ask the constructor if the tolerances NEED to be as tight as he has set them on the drawing, or if he did it just of habit.
His first job he ran a series of pieces on a clapped out mill, so they scrapped a lot of them for being out of tolerance, the material was just cheap steeel, so no biggie, but it was a lot of machine time wasted.
When he saw them mounting the piece, he realized that the tolerance should have been 0.1mm, not 0.001mm
99% of the parts he scrapped would have worked just fine.

E Van says:

When I order mine I want the upgraded titanium parts package 😤

Ivan Kulic says:

znas ti posto je to

J Larson says:

thank you very much gentleman..

Voodoo's Vault says:

Bro, can I come over and play?

Anonymous says:

How does one learn machining if youre doing it as a hobby? Is it possible? The only thing I can find are full time trade school courses.

21trips says:

What about casting?

Sasquatch Hadarock says:

+/-.001"? That's a big tolerance from where I worked. I was doing OD grinds with a normal tolerance of +0/-.0005", so a callout for +/-.001" was considered easy work.

Werner Danler says:

When I worked at Boeing as a machinist they told us once that due to tolerances a 707 could vary 7 feet in overall length.
I ran an electronic tracer and had tolerances on two parallel surfaces over a 6" span of +0.0/-.005 on a titanium part refueling nozzle. Every part I made passed inspection.
Management came down on me once for making less parts than the first shift guy till I pointed to all his reject tags.
That shut them up. Lol

Malibu says:

Pay attention to price, beat down supplier price, bristelle, pipistrel not selling……cirrus and Cessna about the only thing selling. You better call grs and not brs….if you don’t you’ll fail. Source…..high net worth individual

Simo Fr says:

it's insane what you guys are making! This is true insanity. I just love this.

divertechnology says:

that piece unless it is absolutely necessary in my country we would do it more economically

MakoShark CNC says:


John Davis says:

You guys definitely are overcomplicating the tool paths and setups. Keep the part on the bar, hang the bar out of the vice, and profile the side along with the hole. Drill two holes in the corners of your fork for the radii. Saw part off. Now profile the triangle and drill your cross hole with the part on its side. Stand it up and mill out the fork and there you go

Afzal Shahid says:

My question is, by jyst looking at the drawing how can we estimate machining cost without any software or aap?

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