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View Full Version : Chinese 6040 CNC Router Advise Needed



Bob Hepple
21-11-2013, 12:48 PM
Hi There All

I am new to this forum and was pointed to it by John S. I have been watching these cnc routers for over a year now and although I think I know the pitfalls you can never be too prepared for what come through the post. I have seen these Machine in the last few months

LOCAL SHIP!!! UPDATE 4 AXIS CNC 6040 ROUTER ENGRAVER DRILLING & MILLING MACHINE | eBay (http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/LOCAL-SHIP-UPDATE-4-AXIS-CNC-6040-ROUTER-ENGRAVER-DRILLING-MILLING-MACHINE-/290964650024?pt=UK_BOI_Metalworking_Milling_Weldin g_Metalworking_Supplies_ET&hash=item43bed83828)

this I think this is a break from the usual 6040 machines I wanted to know the thoughts I was plumbing for the more usual (see Below)

220V 4-axis CNC 6040 ROUTER ENGRAVER DRILLING AND MILLING MACHINE CNC 6040 4axis | eBay (http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/220V-4-axis-CNC-6040-ROUTER-ENGRAVER-DRILLING-AND-MILLING-MACHINE-CNC-6040-4axis-/221320468861?pt=UK_VG_Replacement_Parts_Tools&hash=item3387ba597d)

this advert states linear bearing and it is a YoCNC controller it was in Portsmouth (LoL) but now in Chine (no surprise there). am I kidding myself or do we think it will be Fair Machine (what do we think import charges will be???)

I have been in touch with Yocnc but the cost of there machines is well over the £2,0000. (excluding any import duties)

I do not want to build one I don't want a project from scratch i'm prepared to sort small problems but just want a decent machine todo Plastics Wood Brass Engraving ext. I have a cnc mill to do the heavy work for my size of jobs.

ON A cynical note - after buying a chines Mill I have seen the quality of some of there equipment and its not good? the trick i think is to minimise the aggravation and buy something half decent to start with..

HELP ADVISE WELCOMED

JAZZCNC
22-11-2013, 04:44 PM
Hi Bob,

Understand why folks are attracted to these machines has the price makes it seem good value but in reality they are not in my experience.
Best way to explain this is to ask you to look at it in another way other than price.? Start with the machine use.!

You state Wood, plastics and engraving. So first look at machine movement and CORRECT feed rates for these materials and you'll find the machine can't actually reach them.!!
Now your probably thinking well I'm in no rush I'll just cut slower.? But it's not all about how long you have to do the Job there's other considerations like Finish quality and cutter life.!
Now it gets worse if you throw Depth of cut into the mix in an attempt to balance cutter life, they are not strong enough to cut deeper and lower the Feed rate. They can't reach feeds to cut shallow and increase feeds either so in most soft materials like Plastics and soft woods you'll be cutting wrong giving lesser finish and cutter life.
Then consider the impact of this on the machine.? To get anywhere near the correct cutting conditions then it will be working at it's maximum capability's pretty much all the time.!! . . . Any machine working at it's Max all the time will feel the strain sooner or later but these machines are very poorly designed and built with cheap components so they feel it very very quickly.

Then we have Engraving and Accuracy.? For V-carving in wood etc then yes they'll probably be fine but finer engraving on material like Brass or Glass etc then they will struggle has the poor components like cheap round Linear rails along with weak Z axis design will greatly restrict in this department. And that's without factoring in wear from constantly working overtime.!!

Now throw the fact the Electronics are mostly Junk and will die well before you have chance to wear the cheap poorly designed and built frame out and you may start to see what I'm meaning.!

So here's my honest feelings from experience of working on these machines.
If your just wanting to learn CNC then buy the cheapest version of these machines you can find and learn on it then sell it on. . . .BUT. . . If your wanting a serious machine that will last and Give repeatable quality finish for years then save your money and either build or add to it and buy a better machine.

Hope this helps.

Bob Hepple
22-11-2013, 06:25 PM
Hi Bob,

Understand why folks are attracted to these machines has the price makes it seem good value but in reality they are not in my experience.
Best way to explain this is to ask you to look at it in another way other than price.? Start with the machine use.!

You state Wood, plastics and engraving. So first look at machine movement and CORRECT feed rates for these materials and you'll find the machine can't actually reach them.!!
Now your probably thinking well I'm in no rush I'll just cut slower.? But it's not all about how long you have to do the Job there's other considerations like Finish quality and cutter life.!
Now it gets worse if you throw Depth of cut into the mix in an attempt to balance cutter life, they are not strong enough to cut deeper and lower the Feed rate. They can't reach feeds to cut shallow and increase feeds either so in most soft materials like Plastics and soft woods you'll be cutting wrong giving lesser finish and cutter life.
Then consider the impact of this on the machine.? To get anywhere near the correct cutting conditions then it will be working at it's maximum capability's pretty much all the time.!! . . . Any machine working at it's Max all the time will feel the strain sooner or later but these machines are very poorly designed and built with cheap components so they feel it very very quickly.

Then we have Engraving and Accuracy.? For V-carving in wood etc then yes they'll probably be fine but finer engraving on material like Brass or Glass etc then they will struggle has the poor components like cheap round Linear rails along with weak Z axis design will greatly restrict in this department. And that's without factoring in wear from constantly working overtime.!!

Now throw the fact the Electronics are mostly Junk and will die well before you have chance to wear the cheap poorly designed and built frame out and you may start to see what I'm meaning.!

So here's my honest feelings from experience of working on these machines.
If your just wanting to learn CNC then buy the cheapest version of these machines you can find and learn on it then sell it on. . . .BUT. . . If your wanting a serious machine that will last and Give repeatable quality finish for years then save your money and either build or add to it and buy a better machine.

Hope this helps.

Jazz Thanks for the reply and your honest opinion, I can see the logic of what your saying and indeed if I could find a machine would prefer to buy British, I found a company Marchant Dice Ltd, Linear Bearings items in worldofcnc store on eBay! (http://stores.ebay.co.uk/Marchant-Dice-Ltd?_trksid=p2047675.l2563)

I had contacted them. But the machines look!! well shall we say light..

Bob

EddyCurrent
22-11-2013, 07:04 PM
Jazz - don't go there ! :joker:

EddyCurrent
22-11-2013, 07:13 PM
Bob,

If it's any use these are some machines I came across when first looking

UK manufacturer of CNC routers and accessories | EXEL CNC Automation (http://www.exelcnc.com/)
Prototools Prototype in House - Home (http://www.prototools.co.uk/shop/customer/home.php)
:: BZT Onlineshop :: CNC Fräsmaschinen und Graviermaschinen (http://www.bzt-cnc.de/en)
Maxicam - Professional CNC Routers (http://www.maxicamuk.com/index.html)
CNC Router Machine | Computer Numerical Control Retrofit Systems (http://stoneycnc.co.uk/)

JAZZCNC
22-11-2013, 07:56 PM
Jazz - don't go there ! :joker:

Can't think what you mean Eddy.?? . . . Hope your not insinuating I would Call the Merchant dice machine the Biggest Pile of over priced Crap since some other well known Rout-out-er machine.!! . . . . Nar surely not, Would I ever do such a thing. :devilish:

EddyCurrent
22-11-2013, 08:20 PM
Release the Kraken :very_drunk:

John S
22-11-2013, 10:05 PM
Looks like I'll have to throw this Techno - Isel router away then as it's on unsupported rails :very_drunk:

JAZZCNC
22-11-2013, 10:59 PM
Looks like I'll have to throw this Techno - Isel router away then as it's on unsupported rails :very_drunk:

Yes and that's probably why they went bust.!! . . . But more likely because they where Stupidly Over priced.:dejection:

HankMcSpank
23-11-2013, 01:21 AM
fwiw I have a Chinese derived 3020 machine ...it's superb for my needs (acrylic, pcb work) - it's made by Redsail who seem to be churning out far better stuff than the typical chinese fayre (for example the electronics are proper m542 derived drivers vs. yoocnc all in one board), comes fitted with ballscrews/nuts, limit switches, the motors are very good ...the frame is very solid (moving table design)...it has unsupported rails, the mere hint of this round these parts, sees folks projectile vomiting while spinning their head 360 degrees :-) , but for my needs (& the size of my machine) I don't need supported rails.

I got the machine for just over 500 quid secondhand on Ebay....at this price level, frankly nothing can touch it that I've seen (unless you want to waste a few months of your life learning how to spec/build one....even then I doubt you'd get it under that budget ...and what price your time? When I first figured I'd need a CNC machine I made my own - it was terrible, wasted so much of my time & frankly I still carry the mental scars at the end result - great if you've got the knowledge, a workshop & the time, but for me ....never again!).

My theory is this...Ebay isn't a place to buy stuff...it's simply a long/short term rental shop - i.e. buy something, use it ...if it suits you great, if not flog it on ...cost of rental = price paid - price sold minus Ebay/Paypal fees, divided by length of time owned!

There's a roaring market on Ebay for used CNC machines so losses (even for lemons) is typically minimal.

EddyCurrent
23-11-2013, 10:37 AM
fwiw I have a Chinese derived 3020 machine ...it's superb for my needs (acrylic, pcb work) - it's made by Redsail who seem to be churning out far better stuff than the typical chinese fayre

Yes I forgot about adding Redsail to my list above, also like your theory about ebay.

Edit: Just had a quick search and Redsail don't look too healthy now or maybe I didn't look in the right place ?

John S
23-11-2013, 10:35 PM
There is a lot of crap written about unsupported rails.
Yes I know supported is better than unsupported but lets look at what were are faced with.
On the 6040 machine as an example the 60 which means 600mm travel is supported, it;s the Y at 400mm and the Z that are on unsupported rails.

The one I saw has 16mm rails fitted with 16mm ball screws. So taking the max length of the Y to be about 500mm can golden bollocks work out the MAX deflection of two of these rails ?
I would imaging it's very small.

These machines do have some drawbacks after seeing a few examples. So far what I have seen is often the motor mountings / bearings are kludged up. Seems to be on a haphazard basis as to where it was assembled as opposed to who's selling them.

Biggest drawback is the controller box with is absolute rubbish and an accident waiting to happen, however if you factor in a new BoB and three 542 drivers you still have a machine worth more than the sum of it's parts given that most of the mid priced ones have a high speed spindle and VFD included.

OK a custom build would be better, not necessary cheaper but many people can't or don't have the skills to do this but want a machine so that they can get working straight away. For them the end product is the goal, not machine building.

As regards cutting at high speed, they can't because they are not big enough to get up to speed before it's run out of room. Will they cut alloy ? yes but slowly but if you want to cut alloy you have chosen the wrong machine.

There is far too much emphasis on this forum about cutting speeds and cutting alloy to the extent that it's probably driving beginners away.

I have a little Roland 2200 engraver here, year dot, works by dragging the carriage on bowden cable on a plastic capstan. I have removed the spindle motor and replaced it with a diamond drag.
It's powered by a 24v Yoohoo board which was spare.

The whole thing is crap, it's slow, max speed is 3.2 furlongs per fortnight but it works and if I engrave some small letters in stainless [ Yes will do stainless ] then run the same program it doesn't double cut at all so accuracy and repeatability is spot on.

Thing is it does the job which is engraving gauges. If i posted this as a build on this forum I'd get shot down in flames but this is an example of the work.

10856

That circle is 50mm diameter and the small script name is less than 1/2mm high.

Jonathan
23-11-2013, 11:51 PM
Can only work out the deflection if you know the force, which obviously depends on what you're cutting and how you're cutting it. It's more meaningful to calculate the stiffness. You can do either with the spreadsheets that have been posted on this forum years ago...


The whole thing is crap, it's slow, max speed is 3.2 furlongs per fortnight

So 32mm/min .. that's about what my mill did when I first converted it using an old unipolar stepper driver!


Thing is it does the job which is engraving gauges. If i posted this as a build on this forum I'd get shot down in flames but this is an example of the work.

I certainly wouldn't do any shooting there, as an engraving machine is the right application for unsupported rails. The obvious reason is the cutting forces are low, so the appropriate size unsupported rail isn't too large. As soon as you require a bit better material removal rate, the required unsupported rails size is so large that it's much more economical to use supported rails. The problem is all too often people post a design with unsupported rails and expect it to work well at much more demanding tasks.

When someone (who will remain nameless) posts a machine with unsupported rails and calls it 'something more rigid that also has good performance' or says it 'will cut through a range of materials with ease and no chatter or wobble to be found', then then they really are asking for it.

JAZZCNC
24-11-2013, 12:43 PM
John has we all know I'm not a fan of Chinese unsupported round rail or that matter supported but not because of strength. ? It's the quality that let's them down badly.
Push the machine remotely hard for any length and they soon become sloppy.
Same goes for rest of machine has well, the build quality is piss poor and has you know the devil is in the detail and these machines are thrown together in the cheapest possibly way.
It's the small details like ball screw end fixing just using cheap nasty deep Grove bearings, totally defeats the point having ball screws if they are going to float like a turd.
It's these small details that soon raise there ugly head when machines pushed.
Now to me the whole point to CNC machine is accuracy and repeatability and why woud you want to buy machine where you throw half of it away, has in the electronics, only to be chasing the slop out of the other half and scared to push machine for fear of turning it back to slop. ?
IMO even the mid priced machines are not worth the trouble.!

John S
24-11-2013, 01:14 PM
So I need to get you to build me a 6040 for about £1500 then without all the faults ?

Hypothetical question really seeing as I have recently bough a high quality MDF router off Geoffrey :thumsup:

Next question is will it do alloy at 27528 metres / min ?

Jonathan
24-11-2013, 01:27 PM
Next question is will it do alloy at 27528 metres / min ?

Put it in the bloodhound car (http://www.bloodhoundssc.com/project/car) and it should just about do it.

JAZZCNC
24-11-2013, 05:59 PM
So I need to get you to build me a 6040 for about £1500 then without all the faults ?

Ok john well lets work on the same principles has the Chinese machines and throw another £500 in the mix which you would end up having to spend just to make it work anything like it should then has a one off deal just to shut you up I will build a machine with profiled linear rails, ball screws etc that will knock the Chinese rubbish into outer space.?

Jonathan
24-11-2013, 06:42 PM
Ok john well lets work on the same principles has the Chinese machines and throw another £500 in the mix which you would end up having to spend just to make it work anything like it should then has a one off deal just to shut you up I will build a machine with profiled linear rails, ball screws etc that will knock the Chinese rubbish into outer space.?

Instead of proving something that should be obvious (and is more easily proven by posting a list of component cost), I'd put my efforts into making a machine that pushes the boundaries. Coincidentally, the material cost of my recent (http://www.mycncuk.com/forums/router-build-logs/6484-sufficiently-strong-machine.html) machine including all the electrics apart from the spindle was £2k. About half of that was spent on aluminium!

JAZZCNC
24-11-2013, 08:15 PM
Instead of proving something that should be obvious (and is more easily proven by posting a list of component cost), I'd put my efforts into making a machine that pushes the boundaries. Coincidentally, the material cost of my recent (http://www.mycncuk.com/forums/router-build-logs/6484-sufficiently-strong-machine.html) machine including all the electrics apart from the spindle was £2k. About half of that was spent on aluminium!

It was a Serious offer Numb nuts I wasn't trying to prove anything. Also what's the point of "pushing the boundaries" just to cut wood and plastics.? I already have a proven machine design that does this Job standing on it's head and that's what I'd make for John.

The machine you built While being a nice strong thing built with care and thought and a credit to you, I wouldn't exactly say it pushes boundaries either.? It just does the Job it was designed for and doesn't do anything special or better than any other machine correctly built and designed to do a job.!! Also you say 2K material costs which I don't disbelieve for minute but what your not saying is the hours of work that's needed to machine and Assemble it. Add this to the Mix and you'd probably need another 2K to make it worth your while.?

Jonathan
24-11-2013, 08:54 PM
It was a Serious offer

I know. I expect you've made a similar offer to the Bob who started this thread.


I wasn't trying to prove anything.

So you weren't offering to make it to prove that it can be done for that price?


The machine you built While being a nice strong thing built with care and thought and a credit to you, I wouldn't exactly say it pushes boundaries either.?

I have neither claimed that it pushes any boundaries, or intend to make that claim.


Also you say 2K material costs which I don't disbelieve for minute but what your not saying is the hours of work that's needed to machine and Assemble it.

Obviously. The point I was making is that for someone who has got sufficient free time, they can make a machine worth owning within a £2k budget.


Add this to the Mix and you'd probably need another 2K to make it worth your while.?

I didn't charge anywhere near that, but those were special circumstances so your point is valid.

JAZZCNC
24-11-2013, 10:04 PM
So you weren't offering to make it to prove that it can be done for that price?

Nope not at all I was offering has a gesture to someone I consider a friend and would probably do the same for me if reversed.?? . . . .Actually knowing that Old bastard he probably wouldn't but hey oh it's what I do and offer that counts to me.!



I have neither claimed that it pushes any boundaries, or intend to make that claim.

That's ok then.!! . . Has we have been playing nice lately and I wouldn't want to break the peace beating your pride and Joy up .. Lol




Obviously. The point I was making is that for someone who has got sufficient free time, they can make a machine worth owning within a £2k budget.

It's more than Free time Thou isn't it.? There's the machinery and the experience to factor into the equation and not every one as these to fall upon.
But I agree it's very do-able and should seriously considered if they have the skills and tools, every thing they need to know is here.!!




I didn't charge anywhere near that, but those were special circumstances so your point is valid.

Yep I know you didn't and wasn't for one minute suggesting you did. I also know and appreciate just how much time and thought went into that machine and putting a price on that would be hard and expensive.!

Fivetide
25-11-2013, 09:10 AM
I guess its all to do will managing expectations, like I keep telling my Dad .. you get what you pay for, however .. I did strike lucky with my Blackcat as it was cheap and does everything I have ever asked of it, downside is the controller software which is shit.. besides that I'm still happy :)

HankMcSpank
27-11-2013, 08:42 AM
I guess its all to do will managing expectations, like I keep telling my Dad .. you get what you pay for, however .. I did strike lucky with my Blackcat as it was cheap and does everything I have ever asked of it, downside is the controller software which is shit.. besides that I'm still happy :)

I think Blackcat CNC machines are sourced from Redsail in China (rebadged?)...so your thoughts/experience augment what I was saying about Redsail turning out machines that are somewhat better than the typical Chinese stuff that abound.

EddyCurrent
27-11-2013, 09:55 AM
Searching for Redsail, it looks like their website seems to have gone backwards unless I'm looking in the wrong place ?

HankMcSpank
27-11-2013, 11:00 AM
Searching for Redsail, it looks like their website seems to have gone backwards unless I'm looking in the wrong place ?

not sure what you mean by backwards, but this is their website...

Cheap Desktop CNC routers milling machine manufacturers from Redsail (http://www.hflaser.com/desktop-cnc-router.html)

they don't do themselves a lot of favours on product information/photos etc (they clearly haven't sussed what 'specification junkies' most CNC buyers are!), but i can say they are very responsive to emails, provide good support...and that their RS-3020 moving table product is exceptionally well made....
http://hostmypicture.com/images/rs3020sms.jpg

(the above is rs-3020 version that I have, which seems to have much longer stepper motors than their model showing on alibaba....

2013 new design desktop cnc router machine RS-3020 for aluminum, View desktop cnc router machine, Redsail Product Details from Jinan Redsail Tech Co., Ltd. on Alibaba.com (http://cnredsail.en.alibaba.com/product/1032170084-219112106/2013_new_design_desktop_cnc_router_machine_RS_3020 _for_aluminum.html)


Since the thread title is about a 6040 machine, here's their associated product...

http://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/967606208/Redsail_mini_desktop_cnc_router_milling.html

They don't show it in their literature, but the control box innards are a step apart from the usual Chinese control boxes...

http://hostmypicture.com/images/01sps.jpg

well loomed, 3 x m542 type stepper drivers (moons sr4's I think - http://www.moonsindustries.com/Products/Drives/2P_DCinput_E/SR4_drive/ ) *not* a nasty yoocnc all in one driver board etc.