Are metals allowed on the CNC router?


I have a aluminum or stainless steel part that I’d like to machine. The dimensions are roughly 530mm(20inch) x 300mm(11 inch) x 77mm(3inch). I know the Tormach CNC doesn’t have classes regularly. So is the CNC router able and allow to machine metals?

I have cut large pieces of Aluminum up to 1/4" thick successfully. I don’t know about stainless.

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Metals that dont require coolant are allowed on the CNC’s. Aluminum is fine, stainless is a no go.

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The Fusion360 for Tormach class is scheduled by request, usually in small groups; the Tormach class itself is scheduled one-on-one by request. So they can generally be taken in short order. The Metal Shop Safety Class is scheduled once or twice a week. So the only bottleneck for training is the Manual Mill class that I teach. I had gotten the backlog cleared but there is a bit of a delay again right now while I restructure the class. I hope to get that done and new classes back on the schedule by the end of the week. So you should be able to get through the Tormach training sequence within a couple of weeks.

The CNCs can definitely handle aluminum, though you’ll have to pay closer attention to speeds and feeds than with wood. I would not attempt stainless steel without a liquid lubricant/coolant, which cannot be used on the CNC.

@jamesfreeman, did we ever get a compressed air source added to either CNC? If they are available, I would use that with aluminum for light cooling and chip clearing.

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@mkmiller6 @David The classes page does clearly state that “Fusion 360 CAM w/ Eric (Tormach Part 1)” needs to be requested and requires several people to do so before it is scheduled, but it doesn’t state anywhere that the actual Tormach class has to be requested for one-on-one scheduling also. Perhaps the latter should be added too?

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The Fusion 360 CAM (Tormach Part 1) class is a prerequisite for the Tormach section. The 1:1 scheduling on the Tormach itself is discussed during the class.


Thanks for the info on the materials! I have already taken your manual mill class. It seems like the Tormach is a better option for me.

I have made a request for the Tormach Part 1. Do you know roughly when I will get a response? I have already taken all the pre-requisites( such as the Metal safety and Ethan’s manual mill). I also have Fusion 360 on my computer and have some years of experience with CAD.

When the class gets scheduled depends on how many people have requested the class. When we have enough to fill the class, we’ll get in touch to get it scheduled. Luckily for you, we’ve hit that mark, so I’ll be in touch shortly.

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