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Router for CNC machine

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martin.pearson

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Er16 will have a maximum collet size of something like 10mm so if you are using imperial bits then mostly 1/4" which there are a lot so might suit your needs.
When I am using large bits & you will need them for certain jobs I like to use a 1/2" shank bit, might be just my own personal preference, so larger bits for jobs like surfacing a piece of stock before carving for me are all 1/2" shank. You will also need a bigger bit for surfacing your spoilboard.
 

Dave the woodworker

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I am sure they are perfectly adequate motors.
They are sold for use on panto routers as well.

For similar or less money you can get a Chinese spindle with vfd. I would still do that mostly because it will have a standard and very cheap collet Er16 or Er20, the inserts are very cheap if you get er 20 you can use standard 1/2 inch collet router bits again cheap and plentiful.

Do not fear the "plumbing" it's one pipe in one pipe out into the reservoir with a pond pump, very easy.

Ollie
How long do these Chinese motors last?

Are there any European alternatives?
 

Ollie78

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How long do these Chinese motors last?

Are there any European alternatives?
I guess mine us probably at least 7 years old and still going fine. I am not hammering it all day, every day in a production environment of course.

There are certainly European alternatives like HSD which are Italian or Mechatron which are German I think. These are seriously expensive though.

A lot of very expensive CNC machines are running Chinese spindles, they are popular because they are good value for money and do work well. Get one from a well regarded supplier and it should be fine.

Ollie
 

martin.pearson

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How long is a piece of string??

It isn't that easy to answer, I have read about people buying them & having problems fairly quickly & there is little in the way of help or support should you have problems. Generally, I doubt that you would get far with any kind of warranty claim if you got one to start with so you do pay your money & take your chance to a large degree. Lots of people run them a full speed for hours on end & that isn't good for any motor, mine has never run at full speed as I couldn't run the machine at a fast enough feed rate & get a decent chip load.
Same as Ollie78, mine doesn't get run every day & is not hammered, I have a problem with time so checked my build thread from when I got the machine, that was 2013 so I have had my spindle for a few years as well.
I knew when I bought it that it was a gamble, if I had been looking for something with a decent warranty then I wouldn't have gone down the route I did.
 

martin.pearson

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There are probably a range of CNC control software programs that will work with it but the 2 I have experience with are UCCNC & Mach3/mach4.
I use UCCNC which is the software by the same company as the Controller

Just to add that I use a third party screen set with the software, the screen set cost me $20 & was from a Company called G-force (I believe) its by a guy who is well known in the CNC world & goes by the name of ger21 on a lot of forums.
 

Ollie78

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Best to buy it as a bundle as it comes with uccnc which is very good ,nicer than mach 3 anyway.
Pretty large user base and cncdrive have a forum for support.

Ollie
 

Dave the woodworker

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Ok, just to recap.

I have purchased the killerBee from Portugal.

I have downloaded the following software to try out, Inkscape, Vcarve Desktop and Carbide Create.

I will purchase the motion controller from Hungary together with software.AXBB-E controller:

The one thing I am still not sure about is the spindle. I may just go for a cheap router while I learn and then update to a better one later.

Do I need anything else?
 

martin.pearson

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Lots of people using routers so they do work, personally I think they are limited which is why I purchased a spindle but it can get a bit pricey when you start adding things up lol, if you are going to start out with a router make sure it isn't one of the cheapest which often seem to be single speed. You want something that you can vary the speed on.
Not sure if carbide create will output the right type of file for the AXBB Controller, will need to check that one,
Vectric software has a lot of support, not saying that the other software does not but as I use Vectric software I know what is available. Vectric have a lot of tutorials, most come with files you can download & then use to work alongside the video tutorial, the forum is very friendly & there are a couple of youtube channels that are worth having a look at. One of them is Mark Lindsay CNC, not something I have watched but he apparently has a series called CNC for the absolute beginner or something along those lines, it gets mentioned quite a bit on forums when people are looking for a place to start their journey.

You will also need:
patience
Time
a squishy stress ball
Large bottle of alcohol

If I think of anything else I will add it lol
 
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Ollie78

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Ok, just to recap.

I have purchased the killerBee from Portugal.

I have downloaded the following software to try out, Inkscape, Vcarve Desktop and Carbide Create.

I will purchase the motion controller from Hungary together with software.AXBB-E controller:

The one thing I am still not sure about is the spindle. I may just go for a cheap router while I learn and then update to a better one later.

Do I need anything else?
There is nothing wrong with using a router to get going, I would however avoid a "cheap" one, you want good speed control and bearings.

I don`t know what is included in the kit from Killer bee, motors, what about stepper drivers, power supply, shielded wires ?

I think another very useful purchase is a handheld pendant with a pulse generator wheel, not just buttons. It is worth it for precise control when jogging the machine as you can select the resolution down super precision or up to fast speed. jogging with computer keys is a pain.
I have a cheapo xhc-hbo4 I got from ebay it works very well, I have a usb one. You need to download a macro for it for UCCNC but its easy to do and worth the money all day.
Oh, also get a tool height sensor, preferably one with a button activation rather than just a lump of metal and a crocodile clip.

Personally I never got on with inkscape, I don`t find it intuitive at all.

Ollie
 

Sporky McGuffin

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Definitely agree on the pendant.

I use my spotting laser a lot - goes in the collet and shows the exact centre of the bit. I'll see if I can dig out some details.

Inkscape has a near-vertical learning curve - I needed the tutorials, two books, and a lot of Web guides. It's very powerful but not friendly at all. Personally I love Rhino for CAD but it isn't one of the cheap options unless you're entitled to the educational discount.
 

Dave the woodworker

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Martin said, "Not sure if carbide create will output the right type of file for the AXBB Controller, will need to check that one,"

Does anyone know if it will?
 

the great waldo

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Martin said, "Not sure if carbide create will output the right type of file for the AXBB Controller, will need to check that one,"

Does anyone know if it will?
The right file output is not for the axbb-e controller but for the software you use to drive it which will be UCCNC or one of the mach 3 or 4 versions. The sofware you use to design your project will give you the right output files via its postproccesor as g code (there is quite a list of formats, but they are all basically text files. )I bought a cnc machine about 10 years ago with wierd software that came in French German English (all mixed up if you chose English) I couldn't figure anything out for about 8 years, so I just had an expensive metal shelf. I eventually got a UC100 from cnc drive and the machine came to life and became usable. Cncdrive products are the bees knees in my opinion, (reasonably priced too) support from them is very good and there is an excellent forum http://forum.cncdrive.com/viewforum.php?f=2 (click on board index top left for latest posts) which will give you many answers to your questions. As far as routers go I have used a Kress Wood Router | Kress 1050-FME-1 powerful 1.4 HP / 5.000–25.000 U/min now known as AMB router motor 1050 FME-1 It's a good router with speed control and not too loud and good bearings. I am in the proccess of making a knew cnc machine using the axbb_e and a spindle motor. Good luck it's a bit of a learning curve, the vectric software is pretty good and not too complicated.
Cheers
Andrew
By the way to answer your question Carbide will output correct g code for Uccnc nand I assume for mach
 
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martin.pearson

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The right file output is not for the axbb-e controller but for the software you use to drive it which will be UCCNC or one of the mach 3 or 4 versions. The sofware you use to design your project will give you the right output files via its postproccesor as g code
Yes badly worded post, I could have done better. I only know of carbide create because it gets mentioned quite a bit on forums by people running GRBL based controllers so wasn't sure if it would have suitable post processors for UCCNC & Mach. I am guessing that it comes bundled with a lot of these machines.
 

martin.pearson

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I still don't have a pendant, one of those things that I have been meaning to buy for a long time & don't seem to have got round to it yet, not sure if there was one that worked with UCCNC when I first started using it, sure there was some debate on their forum about it & people asking if the mach3 pendants would work. Of course that might all have been a dream lol
I do have a tool height setter though, it's in a draw somewhere waiting for me to get round to fitting it, maybe do that once the machine has been moved to the new workshop. Not looking forward to that it's flipping heavy.
 

Sporky McGuffin

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I keep thinking about a height setting doodad, but I have a 90% full box of business cards from my last job that are very accurately 0.36mm thick. I lower the tool until the business card doesn't slide easily, then enter G92Z0.36 and know I'm accurate enough.
 

Dave the woodworker

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I keep thinking about a height setting doodad, but I have a 90% full box of business cards from my last job that are very accurately 0.36mm thick. I lower the tool until the business card doesn't slide easily, then enter G92Z0.36 and know I'm accurate enough.
Sometimes the old ways of doing things are the best.
 

Spectric

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OK so first off Ollie78 is trying to lead you down the right path, it is possible to get started with these cheaper motion controllers & software but I am not sure it is the right way to go even if you say you will upgrade at a latter date, most of the problems you see on forums are related to cheaper kit & most people end up upgrading, the old components they have bought aren't really worth reselling so to me its a complete waste of money & although it is a higher price upfront at least you should only have to do it once.
Is this not what has been said many times before, do it right and do it once because a process of itteration towards what you should have bought in the first place may be an interesting learning curve but will be the expensive option, always nice to get the voice of experience.

Out of interest is any of this software open source? In the days making test and reliability rigs we used National instruments "Labview" software to control the systems including linear and angular postioning as well as data collection, may not be the cheapest option but it certainly delivers a flexable solution.
 

martin.pearson

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Is this not what has been said many times before, do it right and do it once because a process of itteration towards what you should have bought in the first place may be an interesting learning curve but will be the expensive option, always nice to get the voice of experience.

Out of interest is any of this software open source? In the days making test and reliability rigs we used National instruments "Labview" software to control the systems including linear and angular postioning as well as data collection, may not be the cheapest option but it certainly delivers a flexable solution.
I actually think this can be a tricky question to answer, if your not sure where you want to go & if CNC is even going to be something you are going to enjoy then it may make sense to take the cheaper route, I have come across a few people who gave up quite early but I am never sure why that was, it may be the case that if they had started by spending a bit more the journey would have been different & their opinion might also be different lol there are also people who buy then to just use for the occasional project, don't really care about the time thinks take & are quite happy to stay at the same level never moving forward.
For me it was pretty easy, I used manual lathes & mills a lot as part of my job years ago & already knew I enjoyed that sort of thing, I also knew that I wanted to use it as part of a business so for me it made sense to spend a bit more to start with. I did know that if my business grew I would have to invest more but that is probably always going to be the case.

To be honest I don't know that much about software, what is open source & what is not, I have heard the term open source mentioned with certain software but wouldn't know if that was true or not. I believe inkscape is open source & free but don't quote me on that, I am pretty sure I have heard the term open source mentioned in relation to some CNC control software but again don't quote me lol
I am OK working with the software I have on my Computer but know nothing about how it operates lol
 
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