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Incra LS positioner or DRO for joinery

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Andsor

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Hi,

I'm on the fence (pun intended) on wether to get an Incra fence system or to upgrade my home made self designed fence.
The home made one has micro adjust via the knob on the left and can easily be adjusted to 0.1mm with the dial indikator. To knob to the right locks the position. 4040 extrusion also acts as dust extraction with an adapter on the end.
202018951_10159407261475406_3807653156760695029_n.jpg


IMG_20210703_142251.jpg
Here you can see a full 3D model of it. All files available for download if anyone want a try to build something similar. Total cost was around 60-70 USD.

My question - has anyone experience with doing joinery like simple box joints, though or half blind dovetails with a DRO? We all know and praise the all mighty incra, but a 5-600mm DRO is in the realms of 40 USD, whereas a new incra fence is 10 times that.
 

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Bodone

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I like that, especially the tenth of the Incra. Do you have a parts list or BOM you can share and have you machined some of the components or cut down from stock?

thank you.
 

Andsor

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I can write ut a complete BOM, but essentially is;
- V-track 20-series aluminum extrusions (4040 and 2080)
- biggest standard gantry platess
-standard delrin wheel assembly
- timing belt and pulley
- some 3D-printed parts.

The 3D-printed parts can easily be made from plywood or hardwood, it is only the tension from the belt acting on the fixture for the micro adjust, so doesnt have to be that strong.
The model published om grabcad is more or less complete and hold all dimmensions. I can do more detailed sketches if anybody wants.
Next step is fixing a DRO to it to have an absolutte position over the entire travel, which is around 500mm.
 

MikeK

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Out of curiosity and based solely on what you provided, are you suggesting a dial indicator with a limited range is the same as a Digital Readout (DRO)? When I think of DRO, I envision a Wixey product at the low end of the price range or Acu-Rite product at the high end of the price range that has a sensor strip and encoder for the full range of travel. Unless I'm missing something obvious with your design, I don't see a DRO encoder or any way to move your fence from one point to another with accuracy or repeatability.

I have the metric 17-inch Incra LS Super System on my router table and it is as accurate as I could reasonably expect when working with wood. I can return to the same settings weeks or months from now and produce the same results as the last time I used it. Yes, the Incra LS Super System is expensive at $418, but it is a complete router fence system. The metric LS-17 positioner is available separately for $205.

I don't have any affiliation with Incra, other than being a satisfied customer, but if you want to compare cost accurately, please include the cost of all material and labor used to create your fence.
 

Andsor

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Well
Out of curiosity and based solely on what you provided, are you suggesting a dial indicator with a limited range is the same as a Digital Readout (DRO)? When I think of DRO, I envision a Wixey product at the low end of the price range or Acu-Rite product at the high end of the price range that has a sensor strip and encoder for the full range of travel. Unless I'm missing something obvious with your design, I don't see a DRO encoder or any way to move your fence from one point to another with accuracy or repeatability.

I have the metric 17-inch Incra LS Super System on my router table and it is as accurate as I could reasonably expect when working with wood. I can return to the same settings weeks or months from now and produce the same results as the last time I used it. Yes, the Incra LS Super System is expensive at $418, but it is a complete router fence system. The metric LS-17 positioner is available separately for $205.

I don't have any affiliation with Incra, other than being a satisfied customer, but if you want to compare cost accurately, please include the cost of all material and labor used to create your fence.
Well reasoned aruments!

The thought is wixey-ish, yes.
It is yet to be mounted, so it would be hard to see.

I realise the limitations of such equipment, but hoping it is dwarfed by the accuracy required for woodworking.
The incra is presice to 0.1mm, so in my mind a DRO with ten times that accuracy should be capable of (even with a relatively high degree of error, such as a 5-6 hundreds) producing adequite results in woodworking.

Keep in mind that this is not intended for a production shop, but rather for a guy tinkering in his shed and like to fiddle with ideas and try to make things.
I have no problem with spending 5 hours making a jig or spending an extra 30 seconds setting up for a cut.

When delivered to norway those 205 USD have grown conciderably, but then cost is not the main motivation for this build.
 

MikeK

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I am a hobbyist as well and haven't built anything that would benefit from 0.1mm accuracy, but the metric Incra LS is more accurate than you describe. The positioner lever locks the rail at 1mm major increments, with 0.05mm accuracy over the range of movement, and the micro adjust allows for 0.025mm increments.

I applaud those who make their own tools and jigs. I am at a point in life where time is the one resource for which I have little influence or control. :)
 

Andsor

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I am a hobbyist as well and haven't built anything that would benefit from 0.1mm accuracy, but the metric Incra LS is more accurate than you describe. The positioner lever locks the rail at 1mm major increments, with 0.05mm accuracy over the range of movement, and the micro adjust allows for 0.025mm increments.

I applaud those who make their own tools and jigs. I am at a point in life where time is the one resource for which I have little influence or control. :)
I appreciate the responses, and there is a fair chance I will cave in the end, especially if this is too flawed in terms of repeatability or accuracy, and get an Incra, but in the meantime I'll have my pigheaded fun and give it a go.

Updates will be comming, but not for a little while. Just ordered a cheap DRO off aliexpress, which usually take its swwet time to arrive.

Kind regards
Anders
 

johnnyb

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anders just because incra is good doesn't mean yours can't be better! People that make tools are to be encouraged as much as possible as in there efforts lie the next innovation.
 

Andsor

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I like the idea of accuracy....BUT after cutting, one night in a dampish wood shop will blow the accuracy away.....
My thoughts exactly.
That's why I think relative accuracy is key. The pins need to be accurate to the tails in the moment you cut them, but as you say - wood moves.
Hopefully that alleviates the call for machinist grade accuracy and repeat ability.
 
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