A Career In CNC Machining: What You Need To Know | Epic Tool
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A Career In CNC Machining: What You Need To Know

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CNC Machining: A Growing Industry

CNC, aka Computer Numerical Control – originated back in the 1950s. At the time, it was mechanical punch cards directing machine tools to complete certain tasks. Now, we have advanced computers and Computer Assisted Design programs controlling tools that are capable of a wide array of actions, tool changes, workpiece rotations, and several other specific directions during the span of a single programmed operation. 

With the rise of technology advancement, computers skyrocketed CNC use and development into a new dimension. Today, CNC machines use the most powerful computers with a steady increase in their range of capabilities. CNC milling machines used to operate on 3 axes of motion (X, Y, and Z). Now you can find CNC mills with 4 and 5 axes.

What does this mean for someone looking to get into the trade? It means that the applications for CNC technology are nearly limitless. For proof, here are some of the different machines that use CNC technology:

  • Lathes
  • Milling machines
  • Electronic Discharge Machines (EDMs)
  • 3D printers
  • Routers
  • Drills
  • Waterjet cutters
  • Laser engravers
  • Plasma cutters
  • & more!

CNC Career Skills

As a CNC Machinist and Operator, there are a few core skills you’ll need to apply to almost any job that uses CNC technology.


G-code is the programming language used by the majority of CNC machines. Although there are different “dialects” of g-code depending on the manufacturer of a particular machine, the principles are the same. G-code uses lines of command codes to tell a machine to turn on, to move the tool to a particular position, to power up the tool or cutting bit, to move a certain distance and so on.

The reason behind the name G-code is because originally the commands began with ‘G” and a set of coordinates, informing the machine to start the program.


It’s important you learn the difference between lathes and milling machines, and drills from routers. Learning about CNC is more than simply programming – it’s the ins and outs of your average machine shop.


Computer Assisted Design programs have been around for a while. They are often found being used by architects and designers who use them to translate abstract designs on paper into real-world plans and instructions.

CAD programs, when used with CNC machinery, essentially do the same thing. You can design a part on a CAD program, and use the program to generate a set of instructions to produce that part on a CNC machine. 

Career at Epic Tool

If you’re ready for a career as a CNC Machinist or Operator, contact our team today to apply!