Turned Part – What is one and where are they used?

A turned part is a key component in many items and products we use in our day to day lives. Generally they start off as a “slug” of material which is placed into a machine called a lathe. The slug is then rotated at a suitable speed in the lathe spindle and is either then turned, drilled or threaded by using the following tools:

  • Drill Bit – Used for drilling holes in turned parts.
  • Machine tap/Chasing tool – Machine taps are used for producing internal threads where as external threads are chased.
  • Turning tool – Used for either facing the slug or turning along longitudinal axis (z axis).

What materials are they made from and why?

Turned components can be manufactured from ferrous, non-ferrous and plastic materials. For a greater understanding see the list of commonly used material below:

  • Steel – Generally ideal for machining and offers good strength.
  • Stainless Steel – Hard to machine but has great strength and does not rust,
  • Aluminium – Easy to machine and offer good weight saving properties due to being light.
  • Brass – Excellent machining properties, Looks nice, does not corrode.
  • Nylon – Machines well and is fairly hard wearing.

What industries and products use a turned part?

Nearly all mechanical products have a need for turned or machined components. The main industries to use them are as follows:

  • Automotive
  • Fastener
  • Leisure
  • Hydraulic
  • Pneumatic
  • Electrical

A turned part can be found in every car that is manufactured across the world. Looking at the leisure industry, nearly every piece of gym equipment contains a turned part because they offer a function.