What is meant by 2.5 Axis Milling?

Tuesday August 31, 2021 at 2:24pm
The next area we should note is what are the typical strategies we have available to us when machining in 2.5D. The most common options we have in CAM systems are Facing, Pocketing, Profiling and Drilling.

A Facing operation is used to flatten the stock material at the start of a job and ensures we have a flat and accurate level to work from. Depending on your material the shape of this can change but quite often this will zig-zag over the top of a block. Notice in the example below when we see the toolpath from top down we can see a simple zig-zag and from side on we see the two depth levels.
What is meant by 2.5 Axis Milling?
Moving on another 2.5D strategy we can use is pocket. Pocket works by defining a perimeter shape to work within and the CAM system will create a toolpath to cut out the internals. But remember our pocket in SOLIDWORKS must have straight walls with all the geometry been seen from top down.
Profiling is the third strategy we can use and this takes an edge and follows it around at a specified level. This can be used for finishing geometry walls or for chamfering edges to finish a part.
Finally we have drilling. Drilling can be useful for quickly making holes with great levels of accuracy. The only downside for drilling is that to drill a hole of a specific size, you need to have a drill that matches and this is why on larger holes are treated like pockets instead.
If you want to learn more about 2.5 Axis Machining why not check out our video which goes through this topic further.

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