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Smiler
27-12-2009, 04:36 AM
Thanks to Zapp and Kip for the information.

I've machined the ballscrew as per KIps drawing and fitted the BK BF as Zapp's instruction and all is well. In fact all is so well that I went on a building binge last week and especially the weekend and almost finished the mechanicals. X,Y and Z axes are near as dammit complete so look out for some piccies soon. I say almost finished because Marchant-Dice still haven't delivered my Rack and Pinions after three weeks, they now say TNT lost them and they are having the manufacturer send them direct, I thought MD WERE the manufacturer! Only the second time I've dealt with them and never again. I only went with them because Zapp don't do rack (hint, hint).

Anyway.....

I had originally intended to buld the gantry from heavy PVC plate but I think I was heading down a dead end street. I couldn't see how I would get the stiffness I needed given the forces invloved. I therefore decided as I work in the local forge (as they call it here), I should make the base frame and gantry from steel box section. The gantry ends are still PVC as are the Y and Z tables and it has worked out better than I could have imagined. The marriage of the two materials has worked really well. The Z is driven by one of Zapp's ready made 16mm ballscrews and the Y by a 25mm ballscrew (machined by me, first time ever on a lathe YAY!!!). The X is driven by rack and pinion, both sides (if it ever gets here).

Cutting area is 1250mm x 800mm x 120mm in the Z (I intend installing a 4th axis as soon as funds allow).

I'll post some pictures later for your critical gaze....

regards to all

Smiler
27-12-2009, 04:37 AM
Hi everyone,

Ok, here goes. This is what I've achieved in the last week of manic building. Originally it was going to be an all wood design as per the Solsylva plans but it was easy to substitute steel in its place which is handy since that is my area of expertise :)

The base frame is not quite finished yet as I still need to add supports for the work surface. I'm thinking this should be removable so I can add a fourth axis which could then rotate odd shaped items (Queen Anne legs etc.) below the normal bed height.

Any questions, criticisms, free beer, please feel free to send them my way.

Please excuse the mess in my shop ;)
http://www.mycncuk.com/forums/photoplog/images/147/medium/1_DSC02493__50__.JPG http://www.mycncuk.com/forums/photoplog/images/147/medium/1_DSC02501__50__.JPG
http://www.mycncuk.com/forums/photoplog/images/147/medium/1_DSC02494__50__.JPG
By the way, Marchant Dice have let me down AGAIN, promised to email me with an explanation for why it's taken so long for the rack to appear but nothing in my inbox tonight. Looks like I'm going to have to get the CC company to get my money back. :mad:

Smiler
27-12-2009, 04:38 AM
HI Kip,

The box sections are 50 x 50 x 3 steel box section, welded to 6mm thick endplates. The frame is bolted to the rigid PVC endplates. I can't detect any flex at all in that. My only concern is the rails (20mm) and the ballscrew(25mm) are in effect taking the torsional load but whether it will be a problem only time will tell. I've seen larger machines than mine where the rails are also the gantry frame (i.e. no box section )and they don't report problems with them.

On reflection, maybe I should have gone for a supported rail like on my X axis but it was an impulse buy from EBay so I'm stuck. Still there is nothing to stop me adding supports and open bearings later or even flat rails and trucks mounted face on to the box section.

Thanks for the input, any ideas for removing any flex?

Gary
27-12-2009, 04:39 AM
I also see a possible problem with the rails bowing slightly, and this will also put presure on the ball screw.
May be a good idea to either use some profile rail along the top of the 50X50 box section, or upgrade the top rail to 25 or 30mm.
Also how are you driving the gantry along X axis you mention rack, but are you looking at driving it from one side or both? if you are driving from one side, you may encounder some crabbing?
Looks very good overall though.


HI Kip,

The box sections are 50 x 50 x 3 steel box section, welded to 6mm thick endplates. The frame is bolted to the rigid PVC endplates. I can't detect any flex at all in that. My only concern is the rails (20mm) and the ballscrew(25mm) are in effect taking the torsional load but whether it will be a problem only time will tell. I've seen larger machines than mine where the rails are also the gantry frame (i.e. no box section )and they don't report problems with them.

On reflection, maybe I should have gone for a supported rail like on my X axis but it was an impulse buy from EBay so I'm stuck. Still there is nothing to stop me adding supports and open bearings later or even flat rails and trucks mounted face on to the box section.

Thanks for the input, any ideas for removing any flex?

Smiler
27-12-2009, 04:42 AM
hi Zapp,


I also see a possible problem with the rails bowing slightly, and this will also put presure on the ball screw.
May be a good idea to either use some profile rail along the top of the 50X50 box section, or upgrade the top rail to 25 or 30mm.
Also how are you driving the gantry along X axis you mention rack, but are you looking at driving it from one side or both? if you are driving from one side, you may encounder some crabbing?
Looks very good overall though.

I'm driving both sides of the gantry with rack and pinion from a stepper through a 3:1 reduction using pulleys and belt. The Solsylva plans were very specific about driving both sides and the problems you can encounter if you don't. Can't recommend the 4x2 plans enough, even if all you want is ideas for a machine.

For the rails I'm thinking of using profiles as you suggested on the top at least as this will require the least modification. I'll do a bit of deep thinking on that one :)

Just heard my Rack is on it's way (I have a tracking number!) so hopefully that's an end to that little episode.

Thanks for the comments, they really do help.

Smiler
27-12-2009, 04:43 AM
Hi everyone,

Well, the Holy Rack of Marchant-Dice finally arrived and got fitted today so that is the mechanical side pretty much complete. I'll take pics tomorrow, and get them posted.

Now, a question. I'm using a timing belt (15mm) to drive the X axis on the rack. Most belt systems I've seen use a small idler but I have just tensioned the belt by making the stepper mount adjustable. Should I put an idler in there? The only reason other than tension I can see for one is to wrap the belt around the pulleys more, is that the case?

On to the limit switches next. I'm using some microswitches from DIY-CNC (roller type) but may upgrade to optical switches later on depending how they perform.

Take care all and have a good weekend!

Smiler
27-12-2009, 04:44 AM
If you're running high torque it may be worth the "spreading" of the load.....I haven't bothered :D :beer:
Good enough for me, I'll leave it alone :D


Ok, I have a question......

What cable should I get to drive the steppers? I have bought some 8 core (http://www.slidesandballscrews.com/core-shielded-cable-p-149.html?cPath=56&osCsid=af3f8a6c523bfca7728dfb32641bca29) shielded from Zapp Automation but It is probably too small for driving the motors. Zapp have some 4 core on their site but that looks too big, more like mains cable. Anyone have a link to some 4 core to do the job?

Also, the Stepper drivers are rated 4.2A peak, what size fuses should I use?

As you can tell, electrics are not my strong point ;)

Gary
27-12-2009, 04:45 AM
The 4 core cable we have will be fine, i only supply one type of 4 core, so it can be used on all the motors we sell (All the way up to the FL86)
The 8 core cable is signal cable and should not be used for the motor phases.
If the cable is not man enough and burns and goes open circuit, it will damage the driver, and going larger than needed will not cause any problems.
The fuse rating depends on the current setting of the driver, but if you use a fuse about one amp higher than the rated current that should be fine.
Put this on the DC going to each driver.


Good enough for me, I'll leave it alone :D


Ok, I have a question......

What cable should I get to drive the steppers? I have bought some 8 core (http://www.slidesandballscrews.com/core-shielded-cable-p-149.html?cPath=56&osCsid=af3f8a6c523bfca7728dfb32641bca29) shielded from Zapp Automation but It is probably too small for driving the motors. Zapp have some 4 core on their site but that looks too big, more like mains cable. Anyone have a link to some 4 core to do the job?

Also, the Stepper drivers are rated 4.2A peak, what size fuses should I use?

As you can tell, electrics are not my strong point ;)

Smiler
27-12-2009, 04:46 AM
Hi Gary,

Thanks for that. I'll order some cable later in the week. The fuses I plan on using are car blade type, will they be ok do you think?

Also,

Lubricating the ballnuts, what should I use? I have some Lithium High Melting Point (costs a fortune) grease which I use on the tractor, would that be good enough or is there some specific grease I should use.

Smiler
27-12-2009, 04:47 AM
Hi Everyone,

Well, the mechanical part of the router is almost there. The router is now mounted and I've done a few sneaky test cuts which were very successfull considering I don't have proper mills yet, only router cutters.
http://blairvoyach-farm.co.uk/cnc/photos/router.jpg

I still need to buy and fit my energy chain to keep the pesky cables under control as you can see. The yellow and white colied wires are my touch probe for setting X,Y and Z and for centre finding. Works really well.

http://blairvoyach-farm.co.uk/cnc/photos/router_mounts.jpg

I got lucky with my choice of router. I was going to use one of my Triton routers but they are such an odd shape so I thought about dismantling my Makita 3612 which is in the same HP league as the Tritons (3 1/4). It turns out that the plunge slides are exactly 20mm diameter, the same as the precision rail I bought from Zapp and so all I needed to do was to fit two 20mm mounting blocks to my Z axis plate, fit two offcut 20mm rails into them and drop the router on. Tighten up the plunge locking screw and the router is solid, the whole thing works a treat. One massive bonus is that I can remove the router in ten seconds, and have it back on its plunge base in another ten minutes.

I'll post more photos as and when I get my Energy chain.

irving2008
27-12-2009, 04:49 AM
Jeff,

That looks really impressive. Some questions & thoughts...

The Y-axis looks like ally box section welded to some end plates, is that the case and if so what did you weld them with? and how did you get them square? The y-Axis supports, are they the thick PVC you mentioned earlier? were they milled to the T-shape for the mounting on the X-axis pillow blocks or is that 2 pieces joined?

Even tho my first MDF build isn't yet complete I'm already planning a ally and/or steel build, poss a 4-axis job that can act as a lathe too...

Instead of energy chain, which is expensive and bulky IMHO, have you considered using a spring pole (think of a bendy fishing rod) and bringing the cables down from above?

Gary
27-12-2009, 04:50 AM
I think you will find that the Y axis is steel painted silver not ally?


Jeff,

That looks really impressive. Some questions & thoughts...

The Y-axis looks like ally box section welded to some end plates, is that the case and if so what did you weld them with? and how did you get them square? The y-Axis supports, are they the thick PVC you mentioned earlier? were they milled to the T-shape for the mounting on the X-axis pillow blocks or is that 2 pieces joined?

Even tho my first MDF build isn't yet complete I'm already planning a ally and/or steel build, poss a 4-axis job that can act as a lathe too...

Instead of energy chain, which is expensive and bulky IMHO, have you considered using a spring pole (think of a bendy fishing rod) and bringing the cables down from above?

Smiler
27-12-2009, 04:52 AM
Jeff,

That looks really impressive. Some questions & thoughts...

The Y-axis looks like ally box section welded to some end plates, is that the case and if so what did you weld them with? and how did you get them square? The y-Axis supports, are they the thick PVC you mentioned earlier? were they milled to the T-shape for the mounting on the X-axis pillow blocks or is that 2 pieces joined?

Even tho my first MDF build isn't yet complete I'm already planning a ally and/or steel build, poss a 4-axis job that can act as a lathe too...

Instead of energy chain, which is expensive and bulky IMHO, have you considered using a spring pole (think of a bendy fishing rod) and bringing the cables down from above?

Hi Irving,

The frame of the router is steel box section welded to plates which are then bolted to the PVC ends. To keep things square I started with a flat surface, in this case an old RSJ I borrowed from work. I clamped a largish vee block to one end and clamped my end plate vertically to it. Next I clamp the box sections down to the RSJ with a space at each end to ensure parallel. The end plate is then tacked to the box section. I leave the box sections clamped down and move the vee block to the other end of the RSJ, clamp the other endplate to it and repeat. Once I have both ends tacked, I weld the plates in position. After that I check the diagonals and adjust if needed to bring it back to square.

I never get hung up on getting a small fabrication like this super square before fully welding. It's pointless as the welding will pull your corners in. Keep all your welding balanced i.e. if you weld one side of the box section, weld the other side too, I only welded the two vertical sides, welding all three would be overkill and introduce warping that is not easy to get out. Do the absolute minimum welding necessary.

If I had decided to do the gantry in Aluminium I would have used our Dual Pulsed MIG at work, faling that TIG would have been my next preference. My frame looks like Aluminium because I sprayed it with AluZinK cold glavanising spray to protect it while the build continues :)

The PVC end plates are in fact two pieces, the bottom piece is bolted into the vertical one (6 X M8 socket heads). I just cut them with my table saw (slowly) and then planed them on my 10" planer. As long as you treat it as very hard wood and take small cuts and slowly, you could be using MDF but of course it is a much superior material (IMO:)). I am very pleased at how it has worked with the steel frame.

Re: your idea of a spring pole, THAT'S A REALLY NEAT IDEA :D. I have two joists above the machine which I could mount it on and the controller could live up there out of the way of the dust too. Thanks for the idea, I'll set it up and post some pics :)

Thanks for the input Irving, much appreciated.

Smiler
27-12-2009, 04:52 AM
I think you will find that the Y axis is steel painted silver not ally?

Spot on.

Gary, it must give you a buzz seeing the bits you supply fitted to actual working machines. Thanks for bringing down the cost to the level that Joe public can get in on such a fascinating hobby!

irving2008
27-12-2009, 04:53 AM
Hi Irving,

The frame of the router is steel box section welded to plates ...
ah.... are RSJ's that flat then? I was wondering about getting something flat to work on... I have my eye on a granite worktop I have seen in a skip nearby (some people have more money then sense), but I have no idea if I could lift it out and get it home.


The PVC end plates are in fact two pieces, the bottom piece is bolted into the vertical one (6 X M8 socket heads). I just cut them with my table saw (slowly) and then planed them on my 10" planer. As long as you treat it as very hard wood and take small cuts and slowly, you could be using MDF but of course it is a much superior material (IMO:)). I am very pleased at how it has worked with the steel frame.... Table saw, planer???... wish I had the space for these, best I can do is a cheap Skil jigsaw and a B&Q circular saw... and a hand planer :D



Re: your idea of a spring pole, THAT'S A REALLY NEAT IDEA :D. I have two joists above the machine which I could mount it on and the controller could live up there out of the way of the dust too. Thanks for the idea, I'll set it up and post some pics :)

Thanks for the input Irving, much appreciated.

You're welcome Jeff, I have used something similar in the past, two sections of 16mm dia tubing joined by a old door return spring. Cables ran inside some square section lidded 16mm trunking screwed to tubes with a spiral wrapped loop at the spring junction. Look forward to the pics

Lee Roberts
27-12-2009, 04:54 AM
I must say the PVC dose look very nice here mate, how much is it and whats your source?

Gary
27-12-2009, 04:55 AM
It sure does.
I hope you dont mind, but i have pointed a few customers here to look at your post so they can get some ideas.


Spot on.

Gary, it must give you a buzz seeing the bits you supply fitted to actual working machines. Thanks for bringing down the cost to the level that Joe public can get in on such a fascinating hobby!

Lee Roberts
27-12-2009, 04:55 AM
I must say the PVC dose look very nice here mate, how much is it and whats your source?

Smiler ?????????

Smiler
27-12-2009, 04:56 AM
Hi everyone,

Irving, Old RSJ's were that flat, back when it was British Steel and they took a pride in their product and maintained the rollers. A granite surface would do perfectly but don't let the arc stray too near or you'll crack it for sure:). Circular saw would eat PVC, just run it against a guide and the planer was only so I could guarantee 90 degree edges and to get rid of saw marks :)

Gary, yes please point anybody you like to the thread. If I can help them by answering any questions they have, I'd be more than pleased to.

Lee, I got the PVC from work as offcuts. We use it for fixtures for a candle molding production line at a factory here. It was much cheaper than Aluminium both to buy and machine plus it is impervious to moisture and the acids they use.

We buy it from the Pipeline Centre in Glasgow (plastics dept) but we have bought it from Direct Plastics (http://www.directplasticsonline.co.uk/home.php?cat=3674) . I think I worked it out at around 80 ish for the amount I used. Luckily i got mine for nothing as they were offcuts as I said but I would regard the price as more than worth it considering I was going to the trouble of building a steel framed router. I wouldn't like anyone to think PVC is a replacement for Aluminium but it allows you to have much of the rigidity of metal with the ease of working wood. If you go to the direct plastics site and read the data on PVC, you will see why I chose to make the parts I did from it.

Once I have the wiring sorted out (going to try Irving's suggestion this weekend), I'm onto the base frame. Again this will be steel and extremely rigid. At the moment I have the Router top frame just sat on my worktop bench which mimics how the real working surface would be. This way I can try the router and make any mods before I have it permanently mounted on its real base. One good thing has emerged from doing it this way. My workbench is very solidly built (I know 'cause I built it :)) and you cannot move it by pushing it. The router gantry weighs a good 100 pounds and you would not believe how much inertia is passed from the gantry down into the bench, I could literally shake it to bits by moving the Y axis back and forth with too much acceleration so I have adjusted the acceleration to such a rate that the bench almost doesnt react to the movement of any axis, not a very scientific approach but it should ensure a long life for the machine.

I'll post more photos as I continue.

I don't know if this would be of any advantage to anyone but once I've finished building my machine I will have a full CAD drawing done in Solidworks which I would be willing to upload. I could upload it as an E-Drawing (Solidworks own viewer) which would allow other forum members to view it as a model to get ideas or even generate a drawing for making their own.

Take care all,

Lee Roberts
27-12-2009, 04:57 AM
Thanks Jeff ill add that link to the links database now.

Yea i may just give the pvc a go for the little mini mill i wanted to build, ali costing more money ! maybe once i get my rockcliff up and running maybe then ill use ali and get the rockcliff to machine it.

Nice machine Jeff congrats !

irving2008
27-12-2009, 04:58 AM
Thanks Jeff ill add that link to the links database now.

Yea i may just give the pvc a go for the little mini mill i wanted to build, ali costing more money ! maybe once i get my rockcliff up and running maybe then ill use ali and get the rockcliff to machine it.

Nice machine Jeff congrats !

I would do a little more research on PVC v Ally or MDF...

Here's some data (MDF/PVC/Alu):

Tensile strength: 0.3/58/300 MPa
Youngs Modulus: 3.6/3/69 GPa
Density: .73/1.44/2.7 kg/m3

The MDF is half the weight and slightly more rigid against bending than PVC but will delaminate far quicker. MDF is also far cheaper than PVC (about 1/25).

Solid aluminium is 20 times more rigid than either MDF or PVC but weighs more (2 x PVC, 5 x MDF) but then it could be 1/5 the thickness of MDF but still 4 times more rigid.

So PVC's main advantage is in areas where the MDF is likely to delaminate under stress... eg where it has to be end-fixed or there is a strong perpendicular force retained purely by the MDF (not bolted through). Its not an obvious replacement in all areas.

The other main advantage of PVC compared to MDF is that it is available in a range of thicknesses up to 50mm.

I would potentially use PVC for:

The table, where you want to machine the surface flat and avoid flaking.
The gantry sides where I could use 40mm thick PVC and get twice the rigidity of MDF (then again I could use 2 pieces MDF bolted/glued together to get the same result at 1/2 the weight and 1/10 the cost)

irving2008
27-12-2009, 04:58 AM
Additional info... looking at the data on the Direct Plastics site, if its rigidity you are looking for then Tufnol 1p13 is about 3 times more rigid than PVC or MDF but 25% more expensive than PVC (155/m2 again 124/m2) but about the same weight (twice that of MDF). There may be other reasons not to use it tho...

audioandy
27-12-2009, 04:59 AM
Jeff

Great looking machine and signs, I have two CNC4PC BOB's and both have been very easy to set up and operated flawlessly so far, as you know I am still in the early stages of getting my machine up and running so they have not been used in anger yet, also Arturo is very helpful and very quick to answer any questions.

Andy

Lee Roberts
27-12-2009, 05:00 AM
Supa! all round Jeff, really nice to see your machine go from start to finish and also the products its been making. Keep us updated with the pics when you make somthing new using the cnc machine its always nice to see, one question...

Why did you go with the supported rail for the Y Axis but guideway rail on the X ?

Smiler
27-12-2009, 05:01 AM
Supa! all round Jeff, really nice to see your machine go from start to finish and also the products its been making. Keep us updated with the pics when you make somthing new using the cnc machine its always nice to see, one question...

Why did you go with the supported rail for the Y Axis but guideway rail on the X ?

I will certainly keep posting pics, I have a sign to do for a shop in Cumbria and that will be approx 2ft x 3ft sandwich board and it will have to be very special. It will also be the one I thnk I'll vdeo, I'm only sorr I didn't vdeo the"Tara" sign as it was a really nice job to work on.

I went with the guided rail for two reasons, first, the rails came up on the bay at the exact same time I decided to change from unsupported rail plus it was 25mm and new. The price (103 quid for two rails plus four trucks)was too good to miss. The second reason was I figured that the supported round rail is designed to take a load vertically and my Z axis weighs in at 60+ pounds with router and guided rail would be much more rigid. It also has the advantage of bringing the Z axis closer to the centre of rotation of the X axis taking a little load off the tool.


Red Mega machine!!. . . Vnice:clap:

Nar then are you up for Q&A. .? Cos that is very much the same machine I have in mind to build, just different....Ere.!!. .that dunt sound reet does it!! just trust me I know what a mean.:confused:

Size wise it will be about the same, supports for X rails and the gantry will be made from a very stiff but light Ali beam that I knicked from mi grannys stanner stair lift:naughty:. . kinder like a H beam but looks like this |=| and the rest will be a mix of 50mm box and Ali plate to stiffen everything up.
Jurys still out on wether to run all axis on ball screws or mix belt n screws?
Either way I will drive X from both sides.

So my Q,s (not meny)
Q1: What size steppers u using? and do u like them?
Q2: how do find the belt/rack system?
Q3: Now you've fettel'd it with Y rails how would you feel bout cutting Ali? IE: Precision wise how good do feel it is?
Q4: Errrrrr cant think of 1:confused:

Any help would be appreciated.
cheers
Dean.:beer_smile:
Argh. . just thought another!!. . Q4.1: IF you started from scratch what would you change or do different?

Answer 1, 3Nm wired in Parallel. I took the easy way out and bought the Driver Kit 1 from Zapp and I've been delighted with it.

Answer 2, Rack drive was the one recommended by the Solsylva plans and when you look at his plan book, the guy really has done his homework. He gives options for several types of drive, double ball / ACME screws, belt, chain and lists their pros and cons. The rack drive has the best accuracy/resolution/speed/cost envelope for my machine. A rack system is also easily extendable.

Answer 3, I can only report that the little bit of ally machining I did went very well in that it was very smooth and the finish was very nice. The guided rails have added so much rigidity. I didn't bother with measurements, it was just a manual cut and experimental. I'll do a proper job at the weekend and report back once I've designed and cut an ally webcam mount to replace the PVC one.

Answer 4, What would I do different.....
1 Do loads more research
2 Do loads more research
3 Do even more research.
4 ASK LOTS OF QUESTIONS OF PEOPLE WHO HAVE MADE THE MISTAKES
5 Know from day 1 what I wanted to make and how big the machine would need to be. I wasted loads of money buying bits and finding the machine had outgrown them before they got delivered.
6 No unsupported anything

As far as the machine stands now, I would not change anything. It far exceeds the hopes I had at the start.


Oh and any chance of some more pics mainly of the belt/rack and back side of gantry motor mount bits. . . Oh and whats the white box thingys on top n sides? . . . Oh and any chance of closeer pic of router mount cos i got same router kicking around? . . . Oh and I wont ask for owt else promise:joker:
Will do Dean, You'll like the router mounts. The slides on the 3612C plunge base are 20mm so all I used were two 20mm round rail mounting blocks and two 125mm long offcuts of 20mm round rail. Space them the same distance apart on your Z as they are on the plunge base, unscrew the fine adjuster on the router, pop the router off the plunge base and slip it onto the Z axis then tighten the locking lever, job done. I will also be adding a bracket to give a little more support to the router at the t

And to everyone else, thank you for the kind comments. This build is not over by a long way and then of course comes the plasma and the lathe and the......

Regards to all, Jeff.

Smiler
27-12-2009, 05:01 AM
Jeff

Great looking machine and signs, I have two CNC4PC BOB's and both have been very easy to set up and operated flawlessly so far, as you know I am still in the early stages of getting my machine up and running so they have not been used in anger yet, also Arturo is very helpful and very quick to answer any questions.

Andy
Thanks Andy, I'd looked at the CNC4PC stuff and it looks like I'll be going that way too.

Lee Roberts
27-12-2009, 05:02 AM
I will certainly keep posting pics.

Thanks look forward to seeing the new sign, "Tara" I thout it said "Cara".


It also has the advantage of bringing the Z axis closer to the centre of rotation of the X axis taking a little load off the tool.

Thanks for the tip, in the design stages for my X & Z at the momment so was a good point made at the right time for me thanks mate. :beer:

Smiler
27-12-2009, 05:03 AM
Thanks look forward to seeing the new sign, "Tara" I thout it said "Cara".


Got to remember where I live Lee :biggrin:

It is Gaelic script. When I gave it to my mate I said "that is actually a T not a C", he replied " I know, why would you think I thought it would be a C?" When these shapes are a part of your culture, you don't need to be told what they are :biggrin:

Regards, Jeff.

lateAtNight
27-12-2009, 05:06 AM
Hey Smiler,
I just put in my order for one of DIY Cnc's BOBs, and I'm a little concerned that you're going with a different make. Was it a user error, or did it give up the ghost on its own? :D. Should I be thinking about canceling my order, and going with someone else?

I really like what you've done...

Dave.

Smiler
27-12-2009, 05:07 AM
Hey Smiler,
I just put in my order for one of DIY Cnc's BOBs, and I'm a little concerned that you're going with a different make. Was it a user error, or did it give up the ghost on its own? :D. Should I be thinking about canceling my order, and going with someone else?

I really like what you've done...

Dave.

User error Dave. My main BOB is a DIYCNC Uniport and I'm very pleased with it indeed. Buffered outputs for 4 drivers and three relays onboard that don't need external power. The original one was an Optoport which I shorted out trying to wire in a relay in my hamfisted way. Roy repaired it FOC and I put it back in as Port2 so I could have some extra inputs to Mach. Well, I managed to do the same trick and shorted out the board AGAIN and I just can't face asking Roy to fix it again. It was my own stupid fault "tinkering" when I should have just said "right, that's the controller finished". What I was thinking of doing was just getting an opto-isolated BOB which can use pins 2-9 as inputs as that would be what I really wanted and DIYCNC don't do them or I would be buying one from Roy ASAP.

If you've seen my other post this morning about the U-HID interface, well that would mean I don't actually need another BOB at all and that might be the way I go now.

Don't think you will go wrong with DIYCNC, they are very well made boards.

Regards, Jeff.

Smiler
27-12-2009, 05:08 AM
Module 1.0 (3.141 pitch) from World of CNC (http://www.worldofcnc.com/products.asp?recnumber=181) (Yeah right!)

Driven through a 3:1 belt drive reduction.

Don't think I'd do anything different at all. The motor doesn't need to turn quickly to get a decent rapid which also means lots of torque left in the motor but the 3:1 reduction gives a good level of accuracy.

To be honest with you, I took the advice of David Steele at Solsylva. He's done the research and I just followed it.

Regards, Jeff

Lee Roberts
27-12-2009, 05:08 AM
I hear ya....It's grim up north :D

Iii it is nothing but rain and more rain all week and all weekend !

(Wigan) :thumbdown:

Smiler
27-12-2009, 05:09 AM
Try Halifax rack and screw...Rumour has it they make R&P :D

I tried them and at the time they were too busy for my piddling little order. Rhino would only export so it was back to good ol' MDL :rolleyes:

Bet your not busy now Mr Halifax rack n screw! Bet you'd kill for my piddling order for 10 ft of Mod 1.0, well tough titty!

There, that feels better.

Smiler
27-12-2009, 05:09 AM
Been busy doing a few more "upgrades" i.e. a total rewire of the router. Replaced the "Spring pole" method of carrying the cables (Sorry Irving, tried it but it was soooo cumbersome" with Igus cablechain courtesy of BungalowDog. Just about managed to cram all the wires in and it looks very neat too. Speaking of wires, I also managed to grab 40 metres of screened 4 core mains cable for 25 quid to replace the unscreened stuff I'd blagged from work, now maybe the island won't lose radio 1&2 every time I turn the machine on :biggrin:. To finish off, I've covered the cables coming off the machine to the controller with the Polyester sleeving from Lee's eBay recommendation, super stuff and it don't half hold those fat cables close together.

Post pics as soon as I have all the plugs soldered back on.

Got another sign to do very soon and I think I'll be videoing this one for t'tube.

Take care all, watch those fingers!

regards, Jeff.

Smiler
27-12-2009, 05:10 AM
While your clicking take a pic of back side for me so i can see how you mounted motors, shafts etc. . . :beer:
Will do.

I promised to say how my machine handled ally.....

Well it wasn't disastrous as you might expect, in fact it went really really well up to a point. I decided to mill out a new holder bracket for my cross hair laser (if you have a router you NEEED one!) so I did the model at work on Solidworks, passed it to Mastercam and got out me G-code, luvly.

Borrowed a milling vice, top. Mounted it to the router base, excellent. plonked in the 25mm thick ally block , squared it all up, leveled it etc, etc. and pressed the big green button. First the surface was milled, lovely finish, then the hole for the laser got pocketed, went perfectly. Then the dificult bit, cutting the profile 3mm per stepdown (didn't want to get too ambitious), it was going amazingly well, really smooth and chips flying everywhere when ....silence, router stopped almost instantly, control box shut down, Mach went into Emergency mode like I'd pressed E-stop.

First I thought an RCD had tripped but that was all ok but after an hour of fruitless searching I found the cause. The extension I would normally use until I get the machine wired in was being used on the pressure washer so I'd grabbed another....5 AMP Fuse in the plug!!!!!!!!! ARRRGGGHHH

Part is scrapped of course, milling cutter is choked with ally and will need TLC but other than that a good start, can only think it will be better when I get a real spindle and VFD. Going to have another go anyway.

Hate to do this for a job but as a hobby it is the dogs dangly bits (well not my dog as she is a girl).

Jeff.

dickieto
28-12-2009, 12:49 AM
:wave:hello smiler just thought i would introduce myself,i've been reading your thread with great intrest as i am planning to build router for alloy.
i dont see any photos in thread, is it just me,i'm new to all this forum stuff:redface:
would it be possible to send me photos?failing that could just swim cross from ardrossan to see your machine!!:heehee:
:beer:Tom

Smiler
28-12-2009, 04:46 PM
Hi Tom and everyone,

There was a problem with my build log and a spammer (damn him to Hell) and the links to my photos have somehow been deleted in the restoration (damn you to Hell Lee). :wink:

I'll upload them into Lee's filesystem where they will be safe:heehee: and the build can continue.

Jeff

Smiler
28-12-2009, 06:03 PM
I've looked over this thread and there are some crucial posts missing from when Mr Kip was around which if I inserted photos into the messages I need to would make it look even sillier than it does so I'll post the remaining ones here. They are in the gallery now so should be safe:heehee::heehee:

If anyone is building a machine and wants photos of how I did someting just ask and I'll get them uploaded.

http://www.mycncuk.com/forums/photoplog/images/147/medium/1_DSC02675__800x600_.JPG

http://www.mycncuk.com/forums/photoplog/images/147/medium/1_DSC02676__800x600_.JPG

And some signs I made with the machine.

http://www.mycncuk.com/forums/photoplog/images/147/medium/1_may_5_2009_035__800x600_.jpg

http://www.mycncuk.com/forums/photoplog/images/147/medium/1_DSC02671__800x600_.JPG

http://www.mycncuk.com/forums/photoplog/images/147/medium/1_2009_074__800x600_.JPG

I'll upload a load more soon. The machine has moved on since these were taken and I've lots to add (4th axis started, all cables now in energy chain, laser zero finder, touchscreen etc. etc.....). Like I say, if you need photos of any particular part, just shout.

Jeff

99brownd
29-12-2009, 10:42 PM
Hello Jeff,

Great Build and an interesting read.

I too have built my own router but I am currently using a standard breakout port, however I have had many problems with it. Therefore I have been looking for a buffered and isolated breakout board and have been recomended the optoport by Roy from DIYCNC. Before I was looking at the bidrectional from CNC4PC but went to DIYCNC.

Basically all I want to know is how well do Roy's cards work? Were you pleased with the optoport before you blew it? Do they work fine with Mach 3. Also what homing switches are you using, still the microswitches? I am wanting to go onto proximity switches but would like to know how well they work with the optoport card. Do you use your switches NC and Active HIgh or NO?

Is it possible to send an image of your electronics?

Thanks,

Dan.

Smiler
30-12-2009, 01:13 AM
Hello Jeff,

Great Build and an interesting read.

I too have built my own router but I am currently using a standard breakout port, however I have had many problems with it. Therefore I have been looking for a buffered and isolated breakout board and have been recomended the optoport by Roy from DIYCNC. Before I was looking at the bidrectional from CNC4PC but went to DIYCNC.

Good choice, John S. will vouch for Roy's boards too. A buffered, opto isolated card is a big plus IMO if there is an electrical problem it will keep it within the card and not send it on to your PC. I also use a Smoothstepper because at the time I had to use a laptop, The Optoport worked fine with that too, in fact it was the opto isolation that stopped my Smoothstepper getting fried.


Basically all I want to know is how well do Roy's cards work? Were you pleased with the optoport before you blew it? Do they work fine with Mach 3.

They work as well as any other BOB, I never had a single problem that could be put down to the Optoport.


Also what homing switches are you using, still the microswitches? I am wanting to go onto proximity switches but would like to know how well they work with the optoport card. Do you use your switches NC and Active HIgh or NO?

Is it possible to send an image of your electronics?

Thanks,

Dan.

I use the simple microswitches with the little roller on an arm. Simple, reliable, repeatable. I use them NC connected in series Active High, that way, should a limit/homing wire be cut or a switch fail (happened once), the machine will stop.

I know people use proximity switches and have success with them (Techserv) and if you are using separate limits and homing switches, I'd use them on the limits, after all, if you hit your limits, you aren't going to worry about their accuracy or repeatability as long as they switch and stop the machine. For homing, I'm not too sure about them. I've never found affordable (by DIY'ers) prox switches that had the repeatable accuracy that would be a match for simple microswitches in the vital homing situation where Mach automatically homes the machine. Important when you are using jigs and offsets.

Also, my limit switches double as my homing switches which apart from the cost savings, removes a whole level of wiring complexity and faultfinding when something goes wrong. I just don't think you can beat the microswitch, it's tried tested, reliable, accurate, repeatable, simple and just plain works in all sorts of conditions.

Just my opinion of course, others will disagree and there may be new types on the market I haven't tried. Is there a reason you are leaning toward proximity switches?

I'll get a photo of the electricals posted ASAP for you.

dickieto
30-12-2009, 01:19 AM
hello again smiler
could you answer a few questions,hope i'm not boring you with these:confused::redface:
in pictures is the shaft under gantry driving pinions under main frame,if so how did you eliminate backlash etc.
i have s/h racks would they be accurate working with alloy? or are ball screws better?
what speed can gantry move on main frame?
i was going to run roller bearings mounted on angle iron on my alloy frame from stair lift(i think)instead of linear rail as i have low budget.what do you think:question:
P.S more pics please as one of the best builds i've seen then i'll stop anoying you:naughty:
:beer: Tom

99brownd
30-12-2009, 12:24 PM
Good choice, John S. will vouch for Roy's boards too. A buffered, opto isolated card is a big plus IMO if there is an electrical problem it will keep it within the card and not send it on to your PC. I also use a Smoothstepper because at the time I had to use a laptop, The Optoport worked fine with that too, in fact it was the opto isolation that stopped my Smoothstepper getting fried.



They work as well as any other BOB, I never had a single problem that could be put down to the Optoport.


That certainly give me a boost of confidence and enough to persuade me to stay in the UK for buying a board, the optoport it is. I wasnt to keen on buying one from America anyway, everytime I have bought something abroad recently I have been caught out by the import taxes.



I use the simple microswitches with the little roller on an arm. Simple, reliable, repeatable. I use them NC connected in series Active High, that way, should a limit/homing wire be cut or a switch fail (happened once), the machine will stop.

I know people use proximity switches and have success with them (Techserv) and if you are using separate limits and homing switches, I'd use them on the limits, after all, if you hit your limits, you aren't going to worry about their accuracy or repeatability as long as they switch and stop the machine. For homing, I'm not too sure about them. I've never found affordable (by DIY'ers) prox switches that had the repeatable accuracy that would be a match for simple microswitches in the vital homing situation where Mach automatically homes the machine. Important when you are using jigs and offsets.

Also, my limit switches double as my homing switches which apart from the cost savings, removes a whole level of wiring complexity and faultfinding when something goes wrong. I just don't think you can beat the microswitch, it's tried tested, reliable, accurate, repeatable, simple and just plain works in all sorts of conditions.

Just my opinion of course, others will disagree and there may be new types on the market I haven't tried. Is there a reason you are leaning toward proximity switches?

Thanks for this advice, I was just told that you cannot beat the reliability of the proximity switches, but I had also heard from a few others, including you now, that they may not be as accurate as I want them to be.

Them main reason I wanted to use them was for their reliability and supposed accuracy. I will stick with my microswitches for the time being. I may look into magnetic, vane type switches (http://media.digikey.com/photos/Hamlin%20Photos/59085-010.jpg). Our 5axis router at Uni uses these magnetic switches which appear to be very accurate and have certainly been reliable.


I'll get a photo of the electricals posted ASAP for you.

Thanks, just out of interest more than anything else.

Wobblybootie
30-12-2009, 07:18 PM
I have found the photos in your gallery, do you have any more (of the build)? ... I am just starting to collect some bits for the same machine you have built, but like you I am not going to use timber.

What material did you use to mount the racks on? also I assume you used Aluminium for the Y axis side plates, did you stick with David Steeles' bearing choices?

Oh and did you ?... Ummm ... did you also? ... I'll shut up now.

compfranon
21-03-2010, 10:53 PM
I like your build and want to use some of your ideas, particularly like the way you have mounted the spindle. I took my router apart this morning and designed a support plate etc, looks like I didn't need to, a couple of rail clamps will do perfectly well.

Don't want to sound like a divvy, where do I find your gallery pics.