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It is very important to use a reliable and inexpensive sensor to obtain useful information about manufacturing processing, such as cutting force for monitoring automated machining. In this paper, the feed-cutting force is estimated using inexpensive current sensors installed on the ac servomotor of a computerized numerical control (CNC) turning center, with the results applied to the intelligent tool wear monitoring system. The mathematical model is used to disclose the implicit dependency of feed-cutting force on feed-motor current and feed speed. Afterwards, a neuro-fuzzy network is used to identify the cutting force with current measurement only. This hybrid math-fuzzy approach will reduce the modeling uncertainty and measurement cost. Finally, the estimated cutting force is applied in the tool-wear monitoring process. Successful experiments demonstrate robustness and effectiveness of the suggested method in the wide range of tool-wear monitoring applications.