CNC Milling

Our CNC milling process produces custom prototypes and end-use production parts in as fast as 1 day. We use 3-axis milling and 5-axis indexed milling processes to manufacture parts from more than 30 engineering-grade plastics and metals.

CNC milling design guidelines will help you understand capabilities and limitations.

Why Use CNC Milling For Your Project?

Proto Labs’ CNC machining service can deliver machined parts, in both plastic and metal, in less time than it takes to get a quote from other, more traditional machine shops. Upload a CAD file, choose the material and part quantity, and tell us when you need the parts.

CNC material data sheets can be found in our Material Comparison Guide

How Does CNC Milling Work?

We have multiple tool sets based on efficient cutters for a particular plastic or metal material. The machine then rapidly mills parts out of the block in a subtractive manufacturing process that uses 3- or 5-axis milling.
Machined plastic parts are left as-milled, which typically means they show visible tool marks. Some metal parts allow more finishing choices. When the run is complete and your required surface finish is applied, parts are boxed and shipped shortly thereafter.

CNC Machining Icon

1 to 200+ parts

Shipped in 1 to 3 days


Best for:
  • functional prototypes
  • jigs and fixtures
  • end-use components in lower volumes

Milling Materials

We stock more than 30 production-grade plastic and metal materials that are suitable for various part applications and industries. Materials range from plastics like ABS, polycarbonate, nylon, and PEEK to aluminium, stainless steel, and copper.



Design Guidelines

Our basic guidelines for CNC milling include important design considerations to help improve part manufacturability, enhance cosmetic appearance and reduce overall production time.


3D CAD model

Free interactive design analysis within hours