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View Full Version : cheapest sheet materials for 3d milling



mark84
15-11-2017, 02:23 PM
Hi,
I am wanting to make a silicon mould of a piece I will be milling (so that i can reproduce it)therefore the aesthetics of the original aren't important- when i've done this before with pieces that are 2d (or comprised mainly of 2d parts) i've used plywood with a little beech for any small 3d bits. As i'm sure everyone here knows, solid timber can be quite costly, just wondering if anyone has any alternative, cheaper suggestions that can hold 3d designs to a depth of about 14mm.
Thanks in advance,
Mark

Chaz
15-11-2017, 02:35 PM
Some form of hard foam? Would this work?

EddyCurrent
15-11-2017, 02:53 PM
Machine wax, here's one supplier, there are others, http://trycut.co.uk/
It's quite expensive but there's no waste as it just remelts back to a block.
So after the initial cost each part made is essentially free

Chaz
15-11-2017, 02:56 PM
Machine wax, here's one supplier, there are others, http://trycut.co.uk/
It's quite expensive but there's no waste as it just remelts back to a block.

Nice find. Might look at this too for 'stuff'.

magicniner
15-11-2017, 05:55 PM
There are some recipes on line for home-brewed machinable wax, one involves Paraffin Wax, old carrier bags and an old deep fat fryer, must try it some time :D

Chaz
15-11-2017, 06:30 PM
Was snooping around looking at the waxes and came across this.

http://www.collegeengineering.co.uk/product-category/cnc-materials/testfoam/

Edward
15-11-2017, 07:33 PM
I think these waxes and foams are a great idea to test out tool paths on a complex piece before risking it on the real thing. They are not cheap though...

mark84
16-11-2017, 10:02 AM
Machine wax, here's one supplier, there are others, http://trycut.co.uk/
It's quite expensive but there's no waste as it just remelts back to a block.
So after the initial cost each part made is essentially free

That's very interesting, any thoughts on the spindle speed and feed, I have visions of melted wax everywhere!

Chaz
16-11-2017, 10:18 AM
That's very interesting, any thoughts on the spindle speed and feed, I have visions of melted wax everywhere!

Id guess its similar to alu but its only a guess. Perhaps ask the vendor and let us know your finding please. Also interested in this.

EddyCurrent
16-11-2017, 10:29 AM
Whatever it takes to keep friction down and without deformation of the wax, a relatively slow spindle speed but a relatively high feed rate. ("relatively" meaning, I don't know an exact number for certain )

Chaz
16-11-2017, 10:31 AM
Whatever it takes to keep friction down, a relatively slow spindle speed but a relatively high feed rate. ("relatively" meaning, I don't know an exact number for certain )

Thing is, the wax talks about being self lubricating. Probably the paraffin component of it. In which case it probably allows to cut at high rpm and fairly high feed rates. I looked at some vids last night, 'feels like' what Id do for Alu, easily.