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  1. #1
    ...and now I seem to have myself a new hobby trying to put together my first ever cnc from scratch! I have no prior experience with cncís, but Iíve been looking at getting one for some while now. Mostly for various wood projects Iíve got going on from time to time, but also hoping to get my kids involved and interested in industrial design (I.e. to better understand what actually goes into making things).

    Now, having spent countless nights looking at different kits online and ploughing through forums Iíve come to realise that all the kits within my budget come with compromises, many of which I wouldnít be prepared to pay the asking price for. Luckily, I stumbled upon mycncuk which, to my mind, seems to offer the most helpful and on point advice of any cnc related forum Iíve visited. Actually, itís the active members here that have (unknowingly) pushed me over the edge and got me worryingly excited about this.

    Which brings me to what Iím doing here. Iíve lurked around the forum and stolen a bunch of great ideas which, in turn, has yielded a concrete plan of what Iíll get myself into. For anyone kind enough to drop me some critique, Iíll be posting my initial iterations in the build log thread (I hope thatís the correct one) and hopefully Iíll get started soon enough!

    Other than that, cheers to all of you who actively and constructively share your views with us less experienced- Iíve already learnt a ton!

  2. #2
    Chaz's Avatar
    Lives in Ickenham, West London, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 2 Days Ago Has been a member for 7-8 years. Has a total post count of 1,481. Received thanks 104 times, giving thanks to others 67 times.
    Welcome and best of luck with your build.

  3. #3
    Cheers! I can't seem to get my design pictures uploaded (they're resized to requirements and I've tried three different OS) but will post my plans as soon as I get it to work.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Juranovich View Post
    Cheers! I can't seem to get my design pictures uploaded (they're resized to requirements and I've tried three different OS) but will post my plans as soon as I get it to work.
    What format are you using? Also you might need to make a couple more posts.

    I am sure Lee (forum owner) will pop up and sort it for you
    ..Clive
    The more you know, The better you know, How little you know

  5. #5
    I think they were png (I'm using the free version of shapr3d for rough sketching and it only allows for stl exports and screenshots).

  6. #6
    Kitwn's Avatar
    Lives in Exmouth, Australia. Last Activity: 18 Hours Ago Has been a member for 2-3 years. Has a total post count of 676. Received thanks 87 times, giving thanks to others 18 times.
    Welcome to the forum. You'll find plenty of help and advice here.
    You have to make a minimum number of posts (10 I think) before you can upload pictures. have a look at the forum rules.

    Kit
    Engineering is the art of doing for ten shillings what any fool can do for a pound.
    Wellington.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Juranovich View Post
    ...
    Other than that, cheers to all of you who actively and constructively share your views with us less experienced- Iíve already learnt a ton!
    Iíve been operating my machine for a couple of years and if there is one thing I would tell anyone who is designing a CNC... think scenarios where things go wrong. How easy will it be to fix or adjust your machine.

    For instance my Ox is great when it works... but when the belts come loose I have to disassemble a lot of the carriage if the Y axis comes loose and donít get me stared on the holes for the tension adjust on the long rails.

    You see you actually have to remove two inner wheel stacks just to get to the bolts that hold the stepper motor in place. Itís just bad design imho. Maintenance tasks like belt tensioning should be simple to do.

    So imaging you crash your machine (donít worry, we all do it). Your carriage is now skewed... how would you realign it to the frame.... I solved that for me by hitting the emergency stop, moving the carriage to one end where I have aligned two end stops... I push the carriage gently against the stops and the release the E-Stop... the motors come online and all I have to do then is run a homing cycle.

    Oh yeah, you will need to install limit switches so you can run homing cycles. Definitely makes life easier.

    Oh and these are just suggestions from CNC noob... Iím still learning every day... but loving every minute.

  8. #8
    Oh yeah, you will need to install limit switches so you can run homing cycles. Definitely makes life easier.
    Just to be clear for the benefit of new users.

    limit switches and homing switches do two different things. Although a homing switch can be setup at one end to act as both. ie it is a homing switch when first run (homed) then the software changes it to a limit switch.

    Limit switches are nearly at the end of travel on each axis to stop the machine from hitting the hard stops
    ..Clive
    The more you know, The better you know, How little you know

  9. #9
    Kitwn's Avatar
    Lives in Exmouth, Australia. Last Activity: 18 Hours Ago Has been a member for 2-3 years. Has a total post count of 676. Received thanks 87 times, giving thanks to others 18 times.
    And soft limits are there to stop you accidentally crashing the machine due to any one of a dozen easy mistakes. But they only work only AFTER you have used the homing switches to tell the machine where it is.
    Engineering is the art of doing for ten shillings what any fool can do for a pound.
    Wellington.

  10. #10
    Welcome to the forum :)

    Yeah... this is quite a time-sink (and potentially money-sink) of a hobby.... ;)

    Based on your post title, I'm guessing you were thinking of grabbing one of those pre-made Chinese jobbies off ebay?

    They get an awful lot of flack (from me too!) but I think they do actually have a place; as long as you're prepared for how pathetic their capabilities are, they're a reasonably inexpensive way of experiencing the CNC process and way of thinking, allowing you to start exploring what you might want out of a machine.

    The Shapeokos of the world give the same lessons, but are more expensive to begin with, although probably allow a greater amount of time before you outgrow it.

    My first CNC was a simple conversion of a 3D plotting tank (think 40x40x40 work area, but about as stiff as jelly). It taught me lots about GCode, CAD CAM and what I needed from a machine.

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