Thread: TEP CNC Machines
I work in a Seconday school, we've just had some surplus equipment donated from a local college. The machines in question aren't much to speak of but could still have a use if some time was spent on them.
We've aquired three TEP CNC Machines Mk1, the machines are controlled via a controller which programs the tool path line by line via and LCD display and then saves onto a small memory card. They would need an upgrade, possibly TEP's own PC interface and TechCAD software. Toolpaths could be drawn and then imported into TecCAD and output to the machine via RS232 Serial cable.
The machines only have X,Y axis steppers, the Z axis is a simple solenoid which drops the spindle down by 3mm. An end mill would need to be used to cut out the profile and holes would need to be drilled to allow the machine to cut out any inside parts.
The following is the description from the TEP website:
The low-cost CNC machine tool is a robustly engineered machine offering X Y movement of the cutting tool over a 150mm x 240mm area. It takes standard mini-mill cutters - typically 2mm diameter. The tool moves up and down in a single movement (maximum plunge 3mm) but will cut up to 5mm plastic in a single pass without plunging. (Note the tool will plunge into polystryrene but not metals - although it will cut 1mm aluminium etc. in a single pass. Please allow six weeks (approx.) for delivery.
Excellent nice little project for you. have you started work on this yet or?.Me
We've purchased the TEP PC interface for the machine, unfortunately it only works through the bundled software TechCAD. This software has severe limitations and also encounters problems importing dxf files from other CAD packages. I've tried some test cuts in 1mm styrene and all appears well until suddenly the machine loses comunication with the PC and it tracks off in a straight line in either the X or Y axis!
Seems a shame as otherwise the machines could be a useful addition to our workshops. Probably it would benefit from a complete new controller and new steppers but then there won't be much of the original machine left!
Yea that is a shame, the drivers from routoutcnc.com would sound like a good choice for that machine. Price £30 + £4.25 P&P to the UK Only EACH. If you goto his ebay shop i think they are a little cheaper, let me know ill send you the link if need be.
2.5 A 30V Output Drive Capabilities.
3V to 5V logic inputs.
Synchronous Rectification for low power / heat dissipation
Internal UVLO and Thermal shutdown circuitry.
Small PCB foot print only 66mm x 77mm
Internal 5V logic driver onboard (no need for 5v Supply)
Enable – Turns the motor off when not being driven.
For a complete PDF Spec sheet Click on the link below. You will need Adobe Reader to read it.
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