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The Difference Between Servo Motors and Spindle Motors

The Difference Between Servo Motors and Spindle Motors

In any industry, there is an art to knowing the subtle differences between types of equipment. Doing so can help you choose the machinery best suited for a task and avoid choosing the machinery that isn’t.

One of the key distinctions in the CNC world is the differences between the types of motors, such as the difference between servo motors and spindle motors. Our guide will help illuminate these differences.

What Is a Spindle Motor?

Spindle motors operate on the same principles as stepper motors. The system’s controller sends electrical pulses through a group of wires that are wrapped around a permanent magnet. This electromagnetic field helps rotate a spindle at high speeds and with great precision.

Differences Between Spindle and Servo Motors

The differences between spindle and servo motors exist both in the way their systems work and how people use them. Servo motors use a closed-looped system, while spindle uses an open-loop system that relies on magnets. Servo systems also have an encoder to send feedback to the rest of the system for added accuracy.

Despite the differences, both are powerful and precise devices, and there isn’t a “better” motor. It’s all a matter of choosing the right motor for the application.

Applications for Servo and Spindle Motors


Because servos are not constrained to a rotating motion, they are able to install in a wider variety of machines, both industrial and domestic. Here are just a few devices that may use a servo motor:

  • Milling machines
  • Pressers
  • Printers
  • Satellites
  • Cameras
  • Robots


As mentioned, spindles, by definition, emphasize rotating motions. Because of this, they are ideal to be used as lathes. Modern lathes can be used to manufacture a variety of products, such as:

  • Automotive parts
  • Pistons
  • Nuts and bolts
  • Instruments
  • Gun barrels
  • Screws

Knowing your machinery truly is an art, and it’s an art that we practice at Industrial Automation. That’s why we have a large stock of everything you need for your equipment, from servo motors to CNC spindle drives. That way, you can be sure you have the perfect motor for your machinery.

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