Basics of Coordinate Metrology
Unit 8: Types of Coordinate Measuring Machines

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Learning target: You will learn about the different types of Cartesian 3-D coordinate measuring machines. You know how to distinguish between gantry type, column type, bridge type and cantilever type and know details regarding the advantages, disadvantages and possible uses of these types.

Depending on measuring range, precision and area of application, there are different types of coordinate measuring machines. The most widely used coordinate measuring machines are Cartesian rectangular machines. There are also measuring machines using cylindrical or spherical coordinate systems, which, however, will not be discussed here in more detail.

Based on the arrangement and the design of the components moveable in the axis directions, Cartesian 3-D coordinate measuring machines can be divided into four basic types:

Column type
Gantry type
Cantilever type
Bridge type

Depending on the requirements, mixed forms of the basic types are also found in practice.

The differences between the individual coordinate measuring machines are described here. This unit is also followed, at the end, by a

Column type Gantry type
Cantilever type Bridge type