1. #1
    Hi.

    I am a newbie in to the world of CNC, but have been dealing with self-build 3D printers for some time, so some concepts are similar.

    I am trying to pick a milling machine as a base for future conversion to CNC. I am stuck between 3 machines, Sieg SX2.7, Warco WM16B, and WM18, but would like to discuss 2 of them here.
    WM18 is only a little bit pricier than WM16B (1450 vs 1250) but is a bigger machine substantially. Weight alone is 220kg vs 125 kg and much wider ways. Just from specs WM18 looks like a much better machine, however, there is one downside - spindle speed. WM18 spins 2250rpm vs 3000rpm in WM16B. I know that this is important factor for CNC. How much? Can you guys give me your thoughts about it? I will be machining mainly in aluminum but would like to try some harder materials as well. This is for hobby use, rather small parts for now.

    P.S. I would also consider GH18 but this gets only max 1450rpm... Is it worth concidering?
    Last edited by hedeon; 1 Week Ago at 09:09 AM.

  2. #2
    Hi and welcome to the forum.

    I have had a WM18 that I converted to CNC and was very pleased with it. I am also helping another guy convert his to CNC. I used Linuxcnc as the controller with Mesa 5i25/7i76 cards. But to start you could just the a parallel port to keep the cost down. Linuxcnc is quite a steep learning curve. (its actually quite easy for a simple 3 axis machine with PP)

    Good luck whatever direction you go.
    ..Clive
    The more you know, The better you know, How little you know

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Clive S View Post
    Linuxcnc is quite a steep learning curve...
    Do you mean it because of the underlying operating system? If so should not be a problem as Linux is my bread and butter.

    So Spindle speed was not a problem for you?
    Last edited by hedeon; 1 Week Ago at 10:01 AM.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by hedeon View Post
    however, there is one downside - spindle speed. WM18 spins 2250rpm vs 3000rpm in WM16B. I know that this is important factor for CNC. How much? Can you guys give me your thoughts about it? I will be machining mainly in aluminum but would like to try some harder materials as well.
    I had the same issue with a Conect CNC Benchtop Mill, I sold the existing motor and controller and replaced it with the highest power 2 Pole 3 Phase motor it would take and a good quality VFD.
    As the motor had to be 1Hp I stuck with the 1:1 belt drive, had I been able to shoehorn in a 3Hp I'd have gone for an "overdrive" ratio with the spindle running faster than the motor, as it is I get a comfortable 7000rpm without using a Speed Increaser.
    You think that's too expensive? You're not a Model Engineer are you? :D

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by hedeon View Post
    Do you mean it because of the underlying operating system? If so should not be a problem as Linux is my bread and butter.

    So Spindle speed was not a problem for you?
    Linuxcnc is free and you can download the iso and have it up and running in about half an hour. The mesa cards do the step generation on the card. its the HAL file thats take a bit of getting used to. I have set mine up with 3 mpg's and spindle encoder for ridged tapping.

    Re the spindle speed I used 3 flute cutters and mainly cut use ally. If I remember the WM18 has metal gears.
    ..Clive
    The more you know, The better you know, How little you know

  6. #6
    Now, considering that I have never even stood next to CNC machine, how accurate is the statement that, no matter what mill I will choose, I will be replacing motor and driver anyway?

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by hedeon View Post
    Now, considering that I have never even stood next to CNC machine, how accurate is the statement that, no matter what mill I will choose, I will be replacing motor and driver anyway?
    You can just run everything slower and for longer :D
    You think that's too expensive? You're not a Model Engineer are you? :D

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