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 Post subject: Small CNC Machines.
PostPosted: 12 Jan 2018, 22:40 
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Anyone been involved or built one from scratch.

Contemplating assembling one of these:- https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1001437

Printing Plastic components no problem and I will have software help and component guidance.
And design help with OpenScad, if I can't get my head around the design aspects.

There is also a bigger version:- https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1750276 but can't see me needing this size for anything to do with turning project support although one big enough to cut bigger 3D Printer Frames is an aim within the family so may be the way to go.

Interested in problem areas encountered and supply sources for metal rods and tubes etc. (Metals4you for instance)

Another one being contemplated:- https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2719388

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 Post subject: Re: Small CNC Machines.
PostPosted: 12 Jan 2018, 23:53 
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How strong would the printed components be? I've got no real experience of what you can achieve with printing but the first one looks somewhat flimsy?


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 Post subject: Re: Small CNC Machines.
PostPosted: 13 Jan 2018, 00:23 
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The printed components in PLA are very rigid. The fill density is controlable and we have not seen any problems with distortion in bolted components.

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 Post subject: Re: Small CNC Machines.
PostPosted: 13 Jan 2018, 07:30 
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I've built a few CNC routers from scratch but these are all full alloy builds using heavy extrusion, 6082 plate and HIWIN blocks / rails with ballscrew components. I have one large format machine with a 40W laser attached and that has been more useful than I ever thought possible. Plenty of small solid state options in the 2-6W range which would be a doddle to fit to one of the machines you posted.
Depending on what you are cutting, those look superb ways to enter basic CNC functionality. Can't help on the printed part mechanics of these projects but have enough time in the motor /electronics side of things if you want to pick my brains.

I've seen a fair few CNC builds that use essentially 3D printer control type boards but in my opinion a standard breakout board and Mach 3 or LinuxCNC would be a better route as there is a bigger base for support out there. That said, this may have evened out a bit since I last looked at it.

These guys used to be superb; https://www.aluminiumwarehouse.co.uk/ but about three months ago, itself about 24 hours before I put a large order in for my next build they upped their prices by about 30% and their customer service dipped a little - I suspect accountants were at play here but worth knowing about if you didn't already. They interestingly used to sell Irwin tools and clamps significantly less than anywhere else on the web but seemed to have dropped that as well.

Do check Ebay and the usual Chinese outlets such as Aliexpress for CNC linear guide ways as they are ridiculously inexpensive these days for low cost CNC builds. The 13"x12""x5" work envelope of the first example you posted wouldn't cost that much to achieve using off the shelf components. I appreciate the aspect of building yourself but do consider the options.

Lastly, I don't notice any limit switches on the posted machines, if they don't have this I would seriously consider fitting them - I'll wager that you will end up doing it anyway.


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 Post subject: Re: Small CNC Machines.
PostPosted: 13 Jan 2018, 10:24 
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shed9 , Thanks for your input, the build of the 3D printers has already thrown up the vast differences in component costs dependant upon source, a factor of 10 for identical bits is not unknown. and metal gears, feed rollers etc. are often similar prices in soft brass or stainless.

Big advantage of the 3D printer is it is self supporting on many components and easy to produce alternate variations.
The travel limit stops are a must, and are fitted to the 3D printer.

Personally I will have to go with the flow as far as software and design, there are vast libraries of basic components and constructs Example on the open source and I suspect with my limited ability and time I'll be very chuffed if I to just get a machine functioning.

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 Post subject: Re: Small CNC Machines.
PostPosted: 13 Jan 2018, 10:44 
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CHJ wrote:
shed9 , Thanks for your input, the build of the 3D printers has already thrown up the vast differences in component costs dependant upon source, a factor of 10 for identical bits is not unknown. and metal gears, feed rollers etc. are often similar prices in soft brass or stainless.

Big advantage of the 3D printer is it is self supporting on many components and easy to produce alternate variations.
The travel limit stops are a must, and are fitted to the 3D printer.

Personally I will have to go with the flow as far as software and design, there are vast libraries of basic components and constructs Example on the open source and I suspect with my limited ability and time I'll be very chuffed if I to just get a machine functioning.


No problem, will you be updating here on your build. Would like to see how you progress and help if needed.

Got a few 3D printers kicking around, have to say the whole firmware/ dedicated board process has not been my best use of time. Something to be said for complete PC's doing the work.


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 Post subject: Re: Small CNC Machines.
PostPosted: 13 Jan 2018, 11:19 
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shed9 wrote:
No problem, will you be updating here on your build. Would like to see how you progress and help if needed.
.

Hope to, but I suspect it's going to be a drawn out process but could provide a diversion from the wood spinning, here's hoping it does not end up as one of those DIY projects that can't keep up with the technology advances.

This is the initial 3D printer Build that's used to refine the build and climb the learning curve producing some Thread sleeves for my wood chucks.

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 Post subject: Re: Small CNC Machines.
PostPosted: 13 Jan 2018, 16:48 
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Looks like this is the one we are going for, a start on kits of parts under way, being printed in ABS at the moment.
Attachment:
0065f4c95b3aac960729964735790b16_preview_featured.jpg
0065f4c95b3aac960729964735790b16_preview_featured.jpg [ 65.13 KiB | Viewed 210 times ]


Main stumbling block encountered so far are the side cheeks, ideally cut from high density Ply or aluminium I suspect.
Think first efforts are going to be printed in ABS in two parts that will fit on printer bed. (bolted & bonded lap joints)
Attachment:
side.jpg
side.jpg [ 20.97 KiB | Viewed 210 times ]


For those with appropriate viewing software the STL file is Here

Anybody any guidance on cutter/router motor HP to aim at for this size of machine, can't see 500watt being necessary.

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 Post subject: Re: Small CNC Machines.
PostPosted: 13 Jan 2018, 17:08 
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Router Motors:-


Attachments:
motors.jpg
motors.jpg [ 88.78 KiB | Viewed 201 times ]

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