Why does 3D printing get all the love? Probably because it evokes visions of Star Trek’s famous replicator. Back here in the humble 21st century, however, it’s just one of the computerized manufacturing methods set to upend industry. Another method, subtractive manufacturing, is the yin to 3D printing’s yang.
While additive manufacturing (or 3D printing) builds parts layer by layer from the ground up, subtractive machines (like 5-axis mills) whittle precision parts out of solid chunks of metal.