Becoming The Top CNC Service Engineer or Maintenance Technician in the Company
The number one thing from an educational standpoint in my opinion is reading and understanding electrical prints, how to troubleshoot with an ohm meter and knowing how to read a PLC ladder diagram.
Why is this so important? Without it, you will never completely understand how the machine tool functions. Answer some of these questions: Why will an axis not move? What can cause that particular alarm? What diagnostic input needs to be made? All these questions are easily answered if you can read and understand ladder and electrical prints. Ladder and electrical knowledge is critical to troubleshooting a machine tool accurately, quickly and as efficient as possible. These are the skills that I attained through the electrical and PLC programming classes during my degree and is what really pushed my career forward.
Beyond gaining this education machine repair classes were helpful but not necessarily required as long as you have good common sense. In this case, you either have it or you don't. Classes are great if you are able to tear into machines and physically do some repairs or if the instructor puts bugs into a machine. When I say not required it is only because there are many different designs and many ways things are put together and you are always trying to figure them out to understand how they are supposed to operate. This will only come with experience.
One thing I would recommend in learning the quickest and best way possible is when you have an electrical problem is to find it with a meter do not just replace the parts till you find it. And if you do find the part test it with a meter, find what the resistance readings are on all the contacts and points and determine how you should have found it if you did not have a part available. This little bit of extra time spent will increase your knowledge ten fold.
Also if you do not have the time to take classes there are plenty of very informative websites that I try to link to including this one that can give you an excellent head start. If I had just what I have on this site when I started in this field I would be probably ten times smarter today. Also if you do not have the time to take classes this piece of software will give you a lot of practice in troubleshooting real circuit simulations and at the end of going through all of them and understanding how to check for each of the situations with out just replacing the part you should be better then the majority of service people out their. I'm not kidding...I work with maintenance people from different companies all the time. Learn electrical troubleshooting software link
Quality of maintenance people that I run into is some times depressing. The majority of the people servicing machines today do not have any PLC or electrical back ground. They do not have the common sense when it comes to even mechanical repairs. So by acquiring these skills will easily set you apart from the rest.
Hope you this helps information helps increase your knowledge and gives you a jump start in your career. Good luck
Also if you know of other good software or tools please email me so I can review them and possibly add them to my list. Enjoy!