View Full Version : cutting and engraving sheet alu and copper with cnc router

20-02-2014, 02:31 PM
I am new to cnc and have just about got the basics of using my 3 axis cnc router to mill 3d reliefs in timber. I now need to learn how to 2d cut sheet metal with the same machine if possible.
I want to cut 2d shapes in sheet alu and copper, 1mm to 2mm thick, using my cnc router without coolant (if possible). Could someone please advise on the sort of cutter I will need and where to buy one. What sort of spindle speed and feedrates would I need for this operation?
I also want to engrave lettering onto the sheet metals with the same machine if possible. Again, can you advise on cutters please.

This is my machine, although mine is controlled by dsp pendant instead of Mach 3 (for now, I plan to convert it). EXEL CNC SL6090 Pro (http://www.exelcnc.com/index.php/cnc-machines/exel-cnc-sl6090-pro)

Thanks in advance. Chris

21-02-2014, 09:49 AM
Try HSM Advisor, (Advanced CNC Speed And Feed Calculator - HSMAdvisor (http://hsmadvisor.com/) ) it's aimed at modern high speed machining and takes into account machine speed and horsepower and also tool type, size, material and deflection so you can achieve cuts that will work and not snap your tool or stall your spindle.
Clear chips with air to keep the tool path clean, and add an occasional squirt of WD or a 25/75 oil/paraffin mix on the tool path.
Leave tabs/bridges to keep all parts in place (you can leave a fraction of the material thickness rather than full depth), you'll need to go slightly deeper than your material as the work will deform downwards as it gets thin under pressure from the cutter and cutting over-depth will largely clean up the edges, you may have little bits of foil left on some edges but it's easy to tidy up

- Nick

21-02-2014, 09:55 AM
Thanks for the guidance Nick. What sort of cutter would you recommend for sheet alu and copper, 1-2mm?