CNC Machining

CNC Machining A.A.S.
(Formerly Computer Aided Manufacturing)
Associate of Applied Science

CNC Machining A.A.S. is designed to prepare students as entry-level machinists. Students will study machining processes and procedures using lathes, mills, and precision grinders. Students will be prepared to enter the work force as entry-level CNC operators, CNC programmers, CAD/CAM technicians, and manual machinists. Students will be prepared for machining jobs in many areas including transportation, energy industry, aerospace, job shop, and tool and die making.

The first-year students will use a variety of manual machines, including engine lathes, horizontal and vertical mills, and precision grinders. Students will work from blueprints and follow exact specifications and apply practical shop math to accomplish the required tasks. Students will receive six Nc3 Precision Measurement Certifications.

The second-year CNC portion of the program is devoted to the operation and programming of CNC machines. Students will program and operate machining centers and turning centers in the lab. Students will learn manual programming and the Mastercam software system, which allows students to design parts on the computer and then manufacture them in the lab. Students will work from blueprints and exact specifications that are used in industry. Lab work will include programming and CNC machine use. These machines will be used for manufacturing fixtures, project work, and production projects. Graduating students will receive two FANUC Certified CNC Training Certifications.

Program Outcomes

  • Perform machining operations to exacting tolerances common in industry.
  • Prepare and demonstrate cutting tool applications.
  • Prepare, setup, and operate precision manufacturing equipment.
  • Interpret and create various blueprint types and information.
  • Demonstrate and complete machine and tooling maintenance

Note: Upon admission to the CNC Program, students are required to purchase a tool set as outlined in the tool section of this catalog. Students are required to purchase school-approved shirts and red rags for use in the shops and are responsible for a cleaning fee each semester.

CNC Machining A.A.S. 71 Credits

First Semester Courses
Course # Title Credits Fall/Spring Only Milestone
M111T Technical Mathematics 3 Fall
MCH130 Machine Shop 3 Fall
MCH132 Introduction to Engine Lathes 5 Fall
MCH134 Introduction to Mills 5 Fall
MCH240 Metallurgy 2
Total Credits 18
Second Semester Courses
Course # Title Credits Fall/Spring Only Milestone
MCH136 Advanced Lathes 5 Spring
MCH137 Advanced Mills 5 Spring
MCH139 Grinding 2 Spring
DDSN135 Solidworks 1 2 Spring
MCH245 Shop Practices 2 Spring
WRIT121T Introduction to Technical Writing 2
COMX106 Communicating in a Dynamic Workspace 2 Can take Sem. 3
Total Credits 20 Signature Required
Third Semester Courses
Course # Title Credits Fall/Spring Only Milestone
MCH230 Tooling and Fixtures in CNC 2 Fall
MCH231 CNC Turning Operations Level 1 4 Fall *
MCH232 CNC Turning Programming Operations Level 2 3 Fall
MCH234 CNC Milling Operations Level 1 4 Fall *
MCH235 CNC Milling Programming Operations Level 2 3
Total Credits 16
Fourth Semester Courses
Course # Title Credits Fall/Spring Only Milestone
MCH233 CNC Turning Programming Operations Level 3 3 Spring
MCH236 CNC Milling Programming Operations Level 3 3 Spring
MCH237 CAD/CAM CNC Turning Center 5 Spring
MCH238 CAD/CAM CNC Machining Center 5 Spring
Total Credits 16

Manual Machining C.A.S.
(Formerly titled Machine Tool Technology)
Certificate of Applied Science

Manual Machining is designed to prepare students as entry-level machinists in many areas, including aerospace, computer industries, job shop, gunsmithing, tool and die making, Students will study machining processes and procedures using lathes, mills, drill presses, cylindrical grinders, and surface grinders.

The first-year students will use a variety of manual machines, including engine lathes, horizontal and vertical mills, cylindrical grinders, surface grinders, drill presses, and radial arm drill. Students will work from blueprints and follow exact specifications and apply practical shop math to accomplish the required tasks. Much of the lab time will used for shop and project work.

Note: Upon admission to the CNC Program, students are required to purchase a tool set as outlined in the tool section of this catalog. Students are required to purchase school-approved shirts and red rags for use in the shops and are responsible for a cleaning fee each semester.

Please see the Helena College website for gainful employment information related to this program:

Gainful Employment Information

First Semester Courses
Course # Title Credits Fall/Spring Only Milestone
M111T Technical Mathematics 3 Fall
MCH130 Machine Shop 3 Fall *
MCH132 Introduction to Engine Lathes 5 Fall *
MCH134 Introduction to Mills 5 Fall *
MCH240 Metallurgy 2
Total Credits 18
Second Semester Courses
Course # Title Credits Fall/Spring Only Milestone
MCH136 Advanced Lathes 5 Spring
MCH137 Advanced Mills 5 Spring
MCH139 Grinding  2 Spring
DDSN Solidworks 1 2 Spring
MCH245 Shop Practices 2 Spring
WRIT121T Introduction to Technical Writing 3 Spring
COMX106 Communicating in a Dynamic Workplace 2
Total Credits 21 Signature Required

Computer Aided Manufacturing and Machine Tool Technology Tool Set

$1,200 (Approximately)

  1. 2 Uniform Shirts
  2. Starrett machinists kit (0-1 micrometer, 6” calipers, 6” scale)
  3. Allen Wrenches (cluster pack) – metric and standard
  4. 1” Indicator Dial
  5. Dead Blow Hammer – 1 pound
  6. 2” Indicator Dial
  7. Center Punch Set
  8. Magnetic Base (Noga)
  9. Mighty Mag Base (magnetic)
  10. 4 pc. Combination Square
  11. De-burring Tool
  12. Double End Edge/Center Finder
  13. Pocket Flashlight
  14. Carbide Scribe
  15. Screwdriver Set
  16. 6” Rigid Scale, 32nds and 64ths one side/100th on flip side (Starrett)
  17. Standard Set Combo Wrenches 3/8” – 1”
  18. 6” Flex Scale, 32nds and 64ths one side/100ths on slip side (Starrett)
  19. Measuring Tape – 10 foot
  1. Thread Wire set
  2. 3-pc Snap Gauges (Brown and Sharp or Starrett)
  3. Pitch Gauges, inch and metric
  4. File Set with Handles (Snap-on)
  5. One Set of Parallels
  6. File Brush
  7. Clamp Set for Mills
  8. Drills, Fractional, Letters, Numbers
  9. Safety Glasses
  10. Tool Box – max 26” wide, 20” deep, 37” high (minimum height 37” No top boxes)
  11. 1-2-3 Blocks
  12. V-Block Set
  13. Acme Screw Pitch Gauge Required 2nd semester
  14. Carbide Insert Holders – RH turning and threading (Kennametal only)
  15. Carbide Inserts – 2 threading, 2 timing, 2 grooving. (Kennametal only)
  16. Test Dial Indicator .0005 res
  17. Coaxial Indicator
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