Milling is an important machining operation for all kinds of metal work. It’s possible to bore and shape many different sizes and create parts for thousands of machines and equipment. When you mill, you can choose a vertical (VMC) or horizontal machine center (HMC). A horizontal milling machine offers many benefits to the modern shop, and here are some good things to consider.

What is Horizontal Milling?

An HMC uses cutters on a horizontal arbor over the X-Y axes table. The arbor supports the cutting tool and machines heavy pieces with minimal vibration. HMC machines can remove a lot of material in a short time period.


It takes less time to machine many parts when you use a horizontal milling machine. You can create products in just one cycle, as opposed to using two or three. However, there are many other benefits with this method.


Once burrs are removed, they simply fall from the machine. Also, an HMC has plenty of room to store deburring tools, to make the process faster and easier. When it’s done on the machine, it eliminates the need for some manual deburring operations.


Many jobs on an HMC require less time than with VMC methods. You have no time delay between cycles because you can simply swap pallets. When you cut the time it takes to produce goods, you not only raise efficiency, you lower production costs.


You can produce more work in less time and pass this savings on to your customers. During tough economic times, a lower price can make the difference between keeping and losing a customer. Also, a horizontal milling machine lets you lower costs without sacrificing quality.

Easy Cleanup

An HMC keeps chips in one place. This makes it easier to clean the shop and it gives workers a safer and more efficient place to work.