View Full Version : Someone to help me build a machine

28-01-2014, 10:52 AM
Hi All,
I am a newbie to all this CNC stuff and hope I have come to the right place. I also hope I am ok to post this request here.
In my mind I have a picture and design of a machine I want to build, but would need someone to convert my thoughts to paper / physical build. The machine would be used in the picture framing business.
It is a high speed spindle cutting machine that produces the end tenon / mortice corners so that they slot together neatly and consistently. the corner style can be seen at Stretcher bars, Stretchers, Stretcher Bar profile (http://www.stretcherbar-uk.com/) I see a gantry type machine with a spindle motor carrying a cutter and a blade (possibly on two machines ?). Travelling from left to right, the cutter cuts out the mitre at the corner (wood profile would be presented at 45 degrees to allow a straight cut).
The machine would be built from aluminium profiles.
There are large comercial machines out there that do this job, but prices are ridiculous for what is required.
A machine process or result I am looking to replicate can be seen at 010820130842 - YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ieBnAKRc0LM) . Dont be put off by all the mechanics and auto feed of this machine, or the double action. This process can be done single sided with a manual feed.
Please give me a shout if you think you are up for it. We are based in Grantham Lincolnshire

george uk
28-01-2014, 06:11 PM

will it be a production machine or just used sparingly.

would you require the surfaces ( profile ) to be shaped as well as the corners.

If its just doing the tenon / mortice, it would probably be easier to build a shaper for each, rather than a gantry cnc

28-01-2014, 06:26 PM

will it be a production machine or just used sparingly.

would you require the surfaces ( profile ) to be shaped as well as the corners.

If its just doing the tenon / mortice, it would probably be easier to build a shaper for each, rather than a gantry cnc

Hi George,
Thanks for the reply. It will be a production machine. Only the ends would be cut i.e the tenon / mortice part. the other shaping we do ourselves.
At the moment, we cut up long lengths of shaped profile into various smaller lengths - anything from 150mm upwards and increasing in increments of 1mm (or 1" depending on customer requirements) However, we have popular sizes 10", 12" up to about 40" . These are the sizes we would present to the machine.

I invisage presenting about 4 or 6 lengths to the machine at 45 degrees. the end stop would keep them all at the same datum. Pneumatic clamps come down and hold them in place until the spindle motor with cutter travels the length and creates the mitre cut. If possible another spindle with a blade would insert the mortice cut or this can be done in another operation.

It is more of designing the machine with the electronics working, than it is about "can it do it". I know it is possible, its just the mechanics behind it :-)


george uk
28-01-2014, 07:24 PM
It depends on how many you want to produce per day, If its very high production +500 per day, set sizes, a machine like you pointed to make sense. and am sure there is quite a few people on here that could easly build that for you

whereas, if the stuff is more bespoke ( varying sizes or angles ), there may be an easer, cheaper design.

Mount all required blades,shapers, sanders, buffers on a spinning axle near the end of the table, with spacers in-between make the axle rig move past the end of the wood at the angle you require, adjustable at the side of the machine.

do you understand my description. ?

Set up channels on your table and simply feed them in. Done this way, you could easly achive even complex shapes by passing it down one channel then the next, like when your shaping into corners with complex profile material.

That machine you link to, looks spectacular but i would imagine it takes quite a while to retool ( change size of material or angle of cuts ). whereas, big flailing dangerous axle on the end of your table ( obviously box it in ) , could be retooled or adjusted in mins, and have many tool heads on the axle

If you think about it, you could use a plot on your feed in table to achieve even the most complex join angles.

and, it would be a good idea to build ( copy ) one of the designs on here for a standard XZY table or mill, so you can make your own spacers, cutters and shapers. I CNC machine is a great idea for any manufacturing business.

28-01-2014, 08:04 PM
I see a spindle moulder with the right tooling

29-01-2014, 10:30 AM
Hi George,
I think I can see your description, however, although the bars may be different depths, they are all the same at the corners. All have a 45degree mitred corner producing a mortice tenon end - no changing of angles are required. A quick replace tool at the end of a spindle motor is what is required. As previously mentioned it is only the machining at the end of the bar that is required. The shape of the timber has already been done.

29-01-2014, 10:33 AM
Hi Eddy,
When we started the bisiness, we used a spindle moulder and it is far too slow. We progressed to converted single end tenoners and now run over a dozen of them. We are now looking to go to the next level with cnc "automation".

george uk
29-01-2014, 12:24 PM

Can i tease a few more questions. I get you now, you only need high production of tennon and mortace cutting, Idealy feeding a number to the machine at the same time ( example 10 lenghts or more ). The cut has to always be 45deg,

Some assumption first

The lengths of the material does not need to be understood by the machine because your only cutting one end at a time.

Depth and width.

Width ( examples. 80mm ,120mm 200mm 250mm ). Again depending on your machine design, you could possibly ignore width, if you design you machine so the cutter is always comming down at 45d to the material. It will not matter to the machine how wide your material is.

depth. ( example 20mm 30mm 40mm ). The depth, is important, so you get the correct spacings for you tenon and mortice. and either the tooling or the movement of the machine needs to be able to deal with the accurately.


1. Is one pass usually enough or do you have any final finishing
2. Will you have an operator at the machine when the cuts are being done.
3. on a very busy day, how many individual tenons. ( highest level of production you need )

Them three questions should give everyone a clearer idea

29-01-2014, 01:07 PM
Hi George,
I think you are on the money.
1) High production, one side presented at a time, multiple bars and all at 45 degrees - all spot on.
2) length of material irrelevant, this will be controlled on the saw prior to presentation to machine. It would need an end stop to control the "bite" at the 45 degree mitre. Too shallow and we would get a "flat" end or a short 45 degree. Too deep and we would get the tenon sitting proud of mitre. We need a perfect clean corner. If we presented a 4 x 12" bars to the machine and the cuts are perfect, then we would obtain a perfect 12" square frame.
3) We do different profile sizes. the first number identifies the depth of the profile and the second number the width of the profile. 18*44, 38*35, 47*35, 50*35. Depending on how you present the profile to the machine, the base of the first number would be the datum. This would allow centre of bar to be established and the width would always be cut at 45 degrees. In order to get the spacings for the tenon / mortice to fit in at the corners, the machine would need to be adjustable (up or down) for the opposite side to be machined, therefore allowing a perfect corner (i think you are with me on this so will leave itr there)
4) One pass is sufficient as there is not a lot of meat to be taken off the mitre at any one time.
5) I would think the operator would be there. He would be loading and unloading the machine. If we can find a way of hopper feeding machine and securing the presented bar, all the better, but this may be the next step.
6) From a single machine I would need to get a minimum of 8 - 12 finished bars (double this for individual end) per minute. I have no maximum :-) . This should be easily attained if 4 or 6 ends are presented to the machine at one time. (I am not adverse to going for more than one machine as long as we get the first one working to spec.). The machine on the video link does 8 per minute, but it is only presenting 2 bars at a time and doing both ends at the same time. I could accept this if we were looking at doing both ends at the same time, but think a different presentation and doing one side at a time would increase speed considerably.

now you have finished teasing me, how far have we got with the prototype :-)

If you need more info, just shout.