Author Topic: Anyone have their own CNC?  (Read 11905 times)

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Offline Cheese

  • Posts: 9782
Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #30 on: August 06, 2015, 12:54 AM »
@taylor_mann
Interesting post...we all know about 220/240 volt but what are the mystical properties with 277 volt?
I always assumed if 240 didn't work then you'd be bounced up to 480 or ??? 3 phase. Just trying to learn. 

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Offline Tayler_mann

  • Posts: 416
Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #31 on: August 06, 2015, 08:16 AM »
@taylor_mann
Interesting post...we all know about 220/240 volt but what are the mystical properties with 277 volt?
I always assumed if 240 didn't work then you'd be bounced up to 480 or ??? 3 phase. Just trying to learn.

Basically a 277 volt 120 amp circuit is a way to wire without having to go to three phase. You need a special transformer for it and unlike the three phase transformers they do not burn out your motors after 3 years of service. I had to have my machine custom built to except this electrical input. We didn't have three phase and to get it services to our shop was going to cost over $100,000. So this upgrade to the machine cost under $10,000.

Offline Tayler_mann

  • Posts: 416
Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #32 on: August 06, 2015, 08:33 AM »
The first question to ask yourself is what do you want to do with it. If all you want to do is make small trim and design pieces out of wood than a smaller machine will be best. If you want to make yourself 4'x8' Mft tops machine aluminum pieces and even do the smallest intrict work engravers do you obviously need a larger machine.

After thinking about that you have to decide what you have ample power and rigging in your shop for. Take for example my CNC runs 277 single phase but also has a pneumatic relay in it so a very large air compressor is needed so that's abother 220 circuit. For a large CNC to hold your material down you need vacuum clamp. That's either three phase or 220-277 depending what you get. I have a 7.5 hp three phase that cost more than the machine and was totally worth it. It puts the test to the saying "suck a golf ball through a garden hose."

In my opinion as a someone who has  played with every type of machine out there except a high end 3d printer. The smaller CNC machines are not versatile enough. I have one and the only thing I ever do with it is Braille. Doing anything else on the darn thing takes WAY to long to make money with.  Although, a larger machine costs far more than most want to spend. You can get into a 4x8 machine for around $15,000 - $20,000. You could even try your luck with used machinery as well and make our pretty good with those as well. If you are interested at all I sm more than willing to answer any questions just pm me if you have any at all Weather it be a large or small machine.

Also something I forgot to mention was the first shop o was in I hada 3 hp blower motor. With that it was terrible. If you were trying to machine precision you would always have the issue of things moving a thousand of an inch from the pressure of the spindle. When we moved to our new shop we also upgraded our motor. Do not skimp on a bower motor or you will be upset.

Offline Richard/RMW

  • Posts: 2282
Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #33 on: August 06, 2015, 09:35 AM »
I have been looking at the X-Carve from Inventables.  If you watch the New Brit Workshop you will see Peter go through the setup and initial commissioning of the larger system.  The company has a good website and forum with support and comments.  I am considering this setup after looking at Peter's videos and the information online.  The Easel software that Inventables gives away is a pretty good CAD/CAM package for the beginner.  If you are a power user then there are other CAD/CAM packages that are recommended. Anyway, it is a worth a look, the videos are free and so is the forum.   

I looked at that system before I got mine. That belt system drive looks sketchy and unreliable. It's going to stretch (and probably stick too).

The X-Carve is targeted towards "Makers" who want to cut small/light stuff, IMHO it's not really up to cutting 3/4" ply with any speed. This is not to downplay the machine, but it is not in the same league as the one @fritter63 is working on.

I just picked up this kit myself, primarily to mill aluminum plates and small blocks of plastic for my various gadgets. Already assembled it and tested with a grbl based controller, only too 5-6 hours to get from unboxing to motors moving. It is more in league with the X-Carve also but has what I believe an upgrade in that it uses acme screws rather than the GT3 timing belt for the linear motion. Its small form factor & design is also a bit more rigid which should provide better precision when milling AL.

My choice was (once again [sad]) determined by the lack of shop space I can dedicate to the machine. Considering all the small CNC stuff I have already invested in I could have easily paid for a quality 4' by 4' machine by now, but then the shop would be nothing but CNC. Sigh.

RMW
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Offline fritter63

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Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #34 on: August 06, 2015, 11:15 AM »


I just picked up this kit myself, primarily to mill aluminum plates and small blocks of plastic for my various gadgets. Already assembled it and tested with a grbl based controller, only too 5-6 hours to get from unboxing to motors moving. It is more in league with the X-Carve also but has what I believe an upgrade in that it uses acme screws rather than the GT3 timing belt for the linear motion. Its small form factor & design is also a bit more rigid which should provide better precision when milling AL.


That looks like a decent machine Richard. What always kills me on the small ones is that for guitar parts (neck carving especially) I just need a bigger cutting area. Over 24" in once direction fit a neck on it's long axis.

I was tempted to piece together a small one with an elongated axis, but was afraid that once I got going, I'd find other uses for it (which I have just thinking about it). So I ended up with that 4x2 which meets the needs for guitars and than can be (relatively) easily expanded to 4 or 8 feet later if I decide to do that.

For reference, here are the justification use cases I came up with for my shop (that and an $1100 bill on my last trip to the CNC service, which made me realize pretty soon I'd have paid for my own machine).

Lutherie
     Brace profiling
          CNC jigs for holding braces and cutting on both sides
          can make “bridge trusses”, cut outs to reduce weight
     Bridges
     headblocks
          machining for carbon fiber axial brace
     tailblocks
     bending forms
     body molds
     neck building
          neck holding vacuum jig
          carbon fiber inlay
          neck profiling
     Templates
          headstock
          Body shapes
          drilling template for heel bock (or CNC machine the holes prior to heel attachment)
     fretboard Inlays
     headstock inlays
     back and top cutouts
     rosette inlay
     cutaway blocking
     beveled armrest blocking
     heel hardware? Aluminum?
     back tapering jig
          15’ convex form with body shape cutout for precise marking

Boatbuilding:
     ribs
     canoe forms

Jigs
     jig parts

Offline Dovetail65

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Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #35 on: August 06, 2015, 01:38 PM »
You dont need a big machine, you don't need vacuum hold down, you dont need 380 or 440 voltage and you dont need 15,000.00. I dont have any of that and support my family using cnc everyday. My experience with DIY CNC is fairly extensive. I been involved in over 30 DIY builds from the ground up and built 10 of my own personal machines to date from 8"x8" micro screw machines to 6'x13' machine with a 4"x4" tube steel base. I build my own controllers from scratch, but also have purchased and used systems from all the major guys out there.

My advice is go to the joescnc.com, purchase the plans then start reading. After 3 months of reading you will be ready to build a cnc that can do whatever you want. I would choose and build the R&P EVO machine version. 3500.00 will work, 5000.00 is better 7500.00 will get you a fantastic machine that would cost 15,000 to even 30,000.00 from some companies.

I will be willing to help you along the way and so will all the the Joe members. Joes is a private forum and it's worth every penny of the 120.00 or whatever the plans cost just to get on the forum.  Some might say go to CNCZONE, but that forum is just way too big and overwhelming. Some might say get a kit, others just buy a 15,000 to 50,000 machine. That's all well and good, but if you want the information to make those decisions getting in a group like joescnc is the best way to do it. I am dovetail65 there as well. Just pay, sign in, ask questions and Ill be there to answer. The FOG is not the place for good CNC discussion or extensive advice, Festool talk yes. We could double up the size this forum pretty fast with CNC Info. 

« Last Edit: August 06, 2015, 01:57 PM by Dovetail65 »
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Offline Richard/RMW

  • Posts: 2282
Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #36 on: August 06, 2015, 03:21 PM »


I just picked up this kit myself, primarily to mill aluminum plates and small blocks of plastic for my various gadgets. Already assembled it and tested with a grbl based controller, only too 5-6 hours to get from unboxing to motors moving. It is more in league with the X-Carve also but has what I believe an upgrade in that it uses acme screws rather than the GT3 timing belt for the linear motion. Its small form factor & design is also a bit more rigid which should provide better precision when milling AL.


That looks like a decent machine Richard. What always kills me on the small ones is that for guitar parts (neck carving especially) I just need a bigger cutting area. Over 24" in once direction fit a neck on it's long axis.

I was tempted to piece together a small one with an elongated axis, but was afraid that once I got going, I'd find other uses for it (which I have just thinking about it). So I ended up with that 4x2 which meets the needs for guitars and than can be (relatively) easily expanded to 4 or 8 feet later if I decide to do that.

For reference, here are the justification use cases I came up with for my shop (that and an $1100 bill on my last trip to the CNC service, which made me realize pretty soon I'd have paid for my own machine).

Lutherie
     Brace profiling
          CNC jigs for holding braces and cutting on both sides
          can make “bridge trusses”, cut outs to reduce weight
     Bridges
     headblocks
          machining for carbon fiber axial brace
     tailblocks
     bending forms
     body molds
     neck building
          neck holding vacuum jig
          carbon fiber inlay
          neck profiling
     Templates
          headstock
          Body shapes
          drilling template for heel bock (or CNC machine the holes prior to heel attachment)
     fretboard Inlays
     headstock inlays
     back and top cutouts
     rosette inlay
     cutaway blocking
     beveled armrest blocking
     heel hardware? Aluminum?
     back tapering jig
          15’ convex form with body shape cutout for precise marking

Boatbuilding:
     ribs
     canoe forms

Jigs
     jig parts

Totally agree @fritter63 - if I had the room I would have at least a 4' by 4'. With my first little machine I discovered how much you can do once (a) you have the machine & (b) you get over the hump on design/CAM software. If you don't already, I predict you will end up with a laptop living in the shop so you can punch out a quickie impromptu design in the middle of a project.

Really, the cncrouterparts components are industrial quality but designed for a home user, they are a step above the belt or acme drives I have seen used in home CNC.

RMW
As of 10/17 I am out of the Dog business and pursuing other distractions. Thanks for a fun ride!

Offline fritter63

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Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #37 on: August 06, 2015, 04:19 PM »

My advice is go to the joescnc.com, purchase the plans then start reading. After 3 months of reading you will be ready to build a cnc that can do whatever you want. I would choose and build the R&P EVO machine version. 3500.00 will work, 5000.00 is better 7500.00 will get you a fantastic machine that would cost 15,000 to even 30,000.00 from some companies.


I'll "ditto" what Dovetail said. JoesCNC is a good machine and is pretty much the same as the CNCRouterParts kit. You just have to assemble the parts yourself. Also, CNCRP uses steel for their gantry risers etc, while Joe will cut you Aluminum plates on request.

I was *that* close to building one until I saw the V-con rails at CNCRP and decided I liked the accuracy better. I tried to see if I could fit those onto Joe's plates but decided his v-bearing mounting holes weren't spaced right.

And you can't beat the information on the private forum there. A great place to get educated.

Offline joinercp

  • Posts: 19
Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #38 on: August 06, 2015, 05:07 PM »
We operate a large 4 axis Homag Bof CNC router for the production of fire doors, frames and prehung doorsets. It would take 6 men and an extra 4000ft workshop space to accomplish the output of this machine.   
« Last Edit: August 06, 2015, 05:28 PM by joinercp »
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Offline fritter63

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Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #39 on: August 06, 2015, 05:22 PM »
Always thought this was a cool use of CNC:

https://www.glen-l.com/picboards/picboard8/pic477a.html

Offline tomsharres

  • Posts: 9
received one a couple of weeks ago
« Reply #40 on: August 08, 2015, 05:39 PM »
I worked with an importer in Portland, OR and had a 4 axis router built to spec.

5 x 10 foot travel, 5 x 7 1/2 vacuum table, cut out well for 4 axis on one end of the table, and support for vertical work from the surface to the shop floor. The vacuum pump is a dry vane style, and all the drives any Yaskawa servo's.

I wanted to be able to use a 5 x 5 baltic birch panel, and also to carve a full height exterior door.

I've attached a couple of photos. It's not hooked up yet.

That other gizmo is a 20 inch Felder jointer, also not hooked up yet.

UPDATE:

Since I posted, I've ordered a Felder RL 200 dust extractor, and conveniently, my neighbor is moving out so I'm going to add another 1500 sq foot unit adjacent (a demising wall separates them) to my existing shop. This will alleviate an issue with power in the current shop, and also is big enough so that I can keep all of may current and future woodworking equipment is a single environment for ease of dust control. I'll update in November once the RL 200 arrives and everything is operational. The router will no longer have such limited access as it does now.
« Last Edit: October 10, 2015, 01:15 PM by tomsharres »

Offline jmbfestool

  • Posts: 6637
Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #41 on: August 09, 2015, 03:22 AM »
Nice!

One thing why do I feel you have the spindle and gantry the wrong way round?

Would you not prefer to be able to see the spindle head?
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Offline tomsharres

  • Posts: 9
Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #42 on: August 09, 2015, 10:28 AM »
A fair question and in retrospect, I might have placed it the opposite way, but I felt that there's enough room to work, and as with my Haas machining centers, you can't keep an eye on them all the time anyway. The main reason for the positioning, is that the CNC table is lower than the Felder bandsaw (it isn't visible in the picture) and Felder Jointer so that I can shoot material across the table, saving some shop space, and the 4th axis end will be less likely to have any work running on it.

If it doesn't work out, I'll get the riggers to lift it and rotate it in a different orientation. I may have to do that anyway if I add a sliding table saw and a bigger planer in the future.

Offline caseman

  • Posts: 48
Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #43 on: August 09, 2015, 11:01 AM »
The first question to ask yourself is what do you want to do with it. If all you want to do is make small trim and design pieces out of wood than a smaller machine will be best. If you want to make yourself 4'x8' Mft tops machine aluminum pieces and even do the smallest intrict work engravers do you obviously need a larger machine.

After thinking about that you have to decide what you have ample power and rigging in your shop for. Take for example my CNC runs 277 single phase but also has a pneumatic relay in it so a very large air compressor is needed so that's abother 220 circuit. For a large CNC to hold your material down you need vacuum clamp. That's either three phase or 220-277 depending what you get. I have a 7.5 hp three phase that cost more than the machine and was totally worth it. It puts the test to the saying "suck a golf ball through a garden hose."

In my opinion as a someone who has  played with every type of machine out there except a high end 3d printer. The smaller CNC machines are not versatile enough. I have one and the only thing I ever do with it is Braille. Doing anything else on the darn thing takes WAY to long to make money with.  Although, a larger machine costs far more than most want to spend. You can get into a 4x8 machine for around $15,000 - $20,000. You could even try your luck with used machinery as well and make our pretty good with those as well. If you are interested at all I am more than willing to answer any questions just pm me if you have any at all Weather it be a large or small machine.

Tayler's response is dead on.  Unless you are going for a CNC as something to play with you need a purpose and hopefully a business that will support the capital outlay.

I have a Techno Isel LC4896 that I purchased new about eight years ago to support my ATA case business.  ATA cases, Airline Transportation Association, roadie cases, etc. 

www.scopeguard.com

The last 10 cases I cut out on a table saw, made handle, latch holes/receptacles on the standard router table took 6 hours.  The CNC will cut out a case in 6 minutes.  So for me a big time savings and in business it's all about efficiency.  You will also need decent software, meaning fairly expensive, as the free programs on the web will give so-so results.

The case carcass CNC work is all 2D but adding a laser scanner I've moved into 3D reproductions. 

www.proscan3d.com

An earlier poster mentioned the efficiency or inefficiency of a CNC router building quality furniture.  There are numerous amatuer, furniture makers and large companies using CNC routers for quality furniture making.  I have seen CNC tool marks on one of the premier furniture makers products.  I just completed a Maloof style rocker, see the thread under member projects''.  I've hand built the Maloof style and believe me the CNC breathes the sawdust now not me.  BTW I did not have Festool sanders or rotary tools on the hand builds as I do now.

Don



 

Offline Lbob131

  • Posts: 568
Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #44 on: August 09, 2015, 11:31 AM »
I'd quite like a small cnc to play around  with. But  the  smaller ones  seem  to have  minimal dust  collection provision.

Know a chap  who has one of the larger ones  which he uses for his  signage  business. The machine  is located   remote  from his main workshop.
You just see  layers  of  dust  when you walk through the door. I think he just vacates  the  cnc vicinity  when  it fires up.

Offline caseman

  • Posts: 48
Re: Anyone have their own CNC?
« Reply #45 on: August 09, 2015, 11:38 AM »
I'd quite like a small cnc to play around  with. But  the  smaller ones  seem  to have  minimal dust  collection provision.

Know a chap  who has one of the larger ones  which he uses for his  signage  business. The machine  is located   remote  from his main workshop.
You just see  layers  of  dust  when you walk through the door. I think he just vacates  the  cnc vicinity  when  it fires up.

A good dust collection is a must with a CNC.  There are too many moving and expensive parts to not use a dust shoe.  There are times though when the dust shoe interferes with the cutting and impossible to use.