View Full Version : Router bed - What's best???

28-05-2009, 10:54 AM
OK, my design is coming along nicely now (will post some drawings later) and finally settled on a bed size of 1000 x 600.

I was intending to use a slab of 20mm aluminium plate for the bed but realised that getting it machined square and then working on it afterwards may be a little tricky so I have gone for frame type design instead.

This means I now have a big hole were my bed needs to be! Like the idea of aluminium extruded bed plate with T slots but can't find anything that will fit as I want it to, or do I just use MDF or a 10 or 15mm aluminium plate instead and drill holes for work holding??

Just can't make my mind up, does anyone know of any other suppliers of aluminium bed plate other than Marchant Dice?

28-05-2009, 11:21 AM
What's wrong with paying his prices?

Try a UK search for Aluminium Extrusion Stockists

Possibility? (http://www.aluminium-profile.co.uk/)

Nothing wrong with his prices, spoke to him a couple of times and seems a really nice bloke, in fact just bought a couple of Kress spindles off of him yesterday.

The problem is the size, wanted to keep it looking nice and neat but the 19mm extrusion that he does is 270mm wide, my bed is 600mm and 2 side by side may look a bit half finished also I want the slots running along the bed not across for when I start using coolant so putting them the other way round is not really an option.

John S
28-05-2009, 02:28 PM
I've spoken to him also....Don't you think he's a tad high on price then?

Now now, that's no way to talk about one of your customers. :yahoo:

John S
28-05-2009, 11:31 PM
What about fabricating a bed up out of tooling plate, This is high strength alloy that has been ground flat.
One large plate of say 12mm with strips of say 6mm 90mm wide with an 8mm strip on top of that 100 mm wide.
Viewed from the end this will make a tee slot when mated up with one at the side.
CSK Allen screw thru the top two into the bed plate will hold it all together.

This way you get the exact bed layout you require and are not held to any extrusion layout.

Try ASC Metals at Lincoln, they stock tooling plate and will cut it to any size on their big bed saw and it a good cut and square, a bit of draw filing is all that's needed, no machining other than drilling and tapping.


29-05-2009, 12:02 AM
OK, as promised a couple of images of my design so far.....

Its still at the design stage so if anyone wants to throw in there two penneth then go-ahead!


Current bed size is 1000 x 600 but unless I go along John's route then I can see it changing.

May have found another supplier for 20mm extruded bed plate, should have quote tomorrow so I will let you know what the price is like. I know it won't be cheap and if I go for it then I may have to increase the bed width to 750 so that i can just slot it in.

All the linear slides are 20mm THK's so not too worried about racking with one screw in the middle but I may be wrong.

Screws are 16mm x 5 ballscrews on all axis

Steppers are 23 size 3.1 Nm

29-05-2009, 01:29 AM
Thanks for the input Kip,

I'm not happy with the Z either so I will take on board what you are saying, do you have or know of any drawings or photo's of a good Z axis for me to steal a few ideas??

Thanks again.

29-05-2009, 07:08 AM
Hi Steve

I'm not saying for one minute that mine is "good", but if you have a look at my build photos I have done what Kip has recommended if you want more photos or the drawings just let me know.

Nice drawings what software are you using?


29-05-2009, 07:21 AM
Thanks Andy I will check out your photo's.

The CAD software that I am using is Solid Edge ST, been using it for a few years now and it will do everything you want and a lot more!

30-05-2009, 05:41 PM
Here's a picture to give an idea of what I mean, It uses the rails to add rigidity to the plate with the ballnut fixed to the stationary plate.


Nice concept Kip, I have seen this setup before with unsupported round shafting (Marchant Dice Machines) And Thanks to Hilton Steve deciding to build a better machine than mine (bloody nice bloke by the way), I'm gonna beef my set up a little.

Steve's machine design is coming on a treat, refreshing to see some one do things this way, I mean he is designing and modeling the thing first! Wish I had done the same with my first build.

Also would like to say a huge thanks to John, S for inviting me over to see his kit and for making a component for a laser engraver i'm hoping to sell!!