Factors that Affect the Cost for Plastic CNC Machining

Partnering with an expert CNC machine shop is an excellent way to maximize your resources. The first step to bringing your vision to life is to receive a price quote. Several factors impact rising or price quotes, and understanding processes can go a long way in removing stress from your plastic part production.

Considerations that Impact Plastic CNC Machining Quote Rates

CNC Machining Process

Various CNC machining processes—such as milling, turning, or multi-axis machining—will be evaluated to ensure you receive output that matches every requirement. However, not all machining methods are created equal, and some will come with a significantly higher cost than others. Generally, the more complex the part, the more expensive the machining process becomes. Designs and drawings are finalized before your price is quoted to encompass machining capabilities that may affect costs for plastic CNC machining.

Part Structure & Required Tolerances

Design complexity, planned structure, overall part size, the volume of material removed from the stock, and required tolerances all impact the cost of your plastic CNC machining process. As parts with more complex geometries or large dimensions require increased precision, additional process operations, tooling, or time will be needed to complete your order, possibly impacting your quoted cost. Design features that could affect the cost for plastic CNC machining include:

  • Sharp corners
  • Deep cavities
  • Thin walls
  • Tight tolerances

Material Costs

Many precision plastics and composite materials are available for plastic CNC machining production runs. While it is critical to select a material that will display your component’s required traits, cost can vary widely from one plastic to another. A trustworthy machine shop will work with you to evaluate your material options and balance the available budget with desired mechanical properties to produce a high-precision result.

Production Run Volume

CNC machining is best suited to low or medium-volume production runs. While it’s true that the cost per plastic part lowers as the overall output volume rises, longer production run times will lead to increased machining costs, higher labor demands, and more. Establishing your production volume before seeking price quotes for plastic CNC machining services can help you make the most of your available resources and move to manufacturing with fewer delays.

Why Did My CNC Machining Cost Change?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer for why your CNC machining cost may have changes during the price quote because a host of factors affect costs for plastic CNC machining. Depending on the needs of your order, the cost may have fluctuated due to:

  • Failure to optimize designs, resulting in issues that must be addressed
  • Material costs were not accurately represented
  • Supply chain issues led to disruptions or delays
  • The machine shop does not have adequate equipment for your run
  • Changes in production volume led to higher labor demands

Upland Fab Helps You Make the Most of Your Resources & Avoid Unexpected Costs

The best way to avoid unexpected cost increases is to work with an established and reliable CNC machine shop like Upland Fab. The quoted price will not fluctuate because we work hard to anticipate and mitigate design issues, material prices or availability, and other factors that impact plastic CNC machining costs before they become an issue. We offer:

Get Started with Upland Fab

Request a quote or contact us today to get started with an Upland Fab expert. We will get to know your planned production, recommend solutions, and work with you to find a production method that matches your specifications and budget.

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Precision Plastic and Composite CNC Machining

Precision Plastic and Composite
CNC Machining since 1970.

Precision Plastic and Composite CNC Machining
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