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Tolerances effect prices!


Can tolerances effect prices for custom machined parts.

Tolerances, effect prices of your custom machined parts in many ways.
Whether you need a one-off test part, low-volume prototype order, or 100, 000 custom machined pieces!

Tolerance can be determined by the designer based on the form, fit, and function of a part.
While precision is our very important, you should consider the tolerance needed for the custom machined parts carefully, since it has a huge bearing on your custom parts cost.

Why would the cost be different, based on the tolerance?

cncxpress tolerances effect prices
Machining to minute tolerances.

Keep in mind that tighter tolerance can result in additional cost, due to increased scrap, additional machining time or special tools required.

Tolerances also effect prices because it means longer cycle times if the machine needs to slow down to hold the tighter tolerances.

It is possible that the costs can be more than double the standard tolerance.

Depending on the tolerance of the custom part and the geometry associated with it.
Tighter tolerances should only be used when it is necessary to meet the design criteria for the part.


How to Reduce CNC Machining Costs?

Unless specifically called out by the designer, the standard tolerance used is ±.005 in. for metal parts and ±.010 in. for plastic parts.
Furthermore, overall geometric tolerances can be applied to the drawing for the part.

If tighter tolerances (less than the standard, e.g. ±.002 in.) are required, please let us know which dimensions require a tighter tolerance range. As a point of reference, a piece of paper is about 0.003 in. thick.
Remember based on the geometric tolerance and type of tolerance applied, cost may rise due to increased inspection times.


The following are some of the reason prices vary because of tolerances.

  • Longer set up time for the machine.
  • The need to change the tooling regularly.
  • The extra number of passes to get the exact tolerance.
  • The additional waste.
  • In many cases the necessity to use higher grade materials.

We are here to assist you if you need any advice which tolerance is right for you.

Careful planning and thinking about the project and the tolerances required. 

Please discuss any concerns you have with us and let us get you the best cost saving.
Also in some cases make the part easier to use.