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  1. #1
    Hello guys,

    I have a few quesitons:

    I am trying to find some Ecocast equivalent flat aluminium that I will be using for my CNC-router build. I need flat plates for the Z-axis plates, HIWIN bearing mounting plates and gantry side plates. I live in Finland and apparently https://www.aluminiumwarehouse.co.uk...e-cut-to-order does not ship to Finland.

    1. Does this Ebay supplier https://www.ebay.com/itm/Plangefr%C3...r=584699104603 seem to be similar/equally good? Perhaps someone here knows an even better supplier that is close or ships to Finland? The problem with this Ebay supplier is that 200mm width seems to be the widest plates available. I can make that work though with slight changes in my design.
    2. For the X-axis (some here may call it Y-axis) which the Z-axis will be mounted to, I will be using a 90x180 heavy duty profile. Depending on how flat it is when I receive it, do you think it is any idea to mount a flat aluminium plate onto the profile? I would then mount the linear rails to that plate, which in turn also should increase stiffness a little bit.


    Awesome forum by the way. I have already had a lot of my questions answered just by reading build logs!

  2. #2
    you can try www.impactirl.ie
    they have online chat with immediate response so worth a try, and better prices than aluminium warehouse (see screen shot for price reference)
    but I'm sure you can find it locally just email to metals supply companies or make a call...
    Click image for larger version. 

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  3. #3
    Try searching for a Mic1 tooling plate might have more luck finding something closer to home.

    Regards plate on the profile then it would be a waste because if the gantry is bent then bolting to it just bends the plate to the same degree unless you shim it.
    I've built dozens of machines using this size profile and I doubt you'll need to stiffen it up unless it's a very large machine with a very heavy gantry, in which case Profile is the wrong choice.!

  4. #4
    Impactirl offered 20x200x1000mm for 160€ for shipping to Finland. I guess that is a good price given that they cut it to length as well!

    Yeah my gantry will be about 1100mm with approx 900mm working area. I am designing the z-axis so that I can use something like a JGL-100 2.5kW ATC spindle if I want. That spindle alone is almost 8kg. I estimate the Z-axis to be around 40kg in total with the ATC spindle, which is not too bad. Ill just skip the plate and shim the profile if needed.

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  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by NordicCnc View Post
    Impactirl offered 20x200x1000mm for 160€ for shipping to Finland. I guess that is a good price given that they cut it to length as well!
    It's about right for a 5 series plate.

    Quote Originally Posted by NordicCnc View Post
    Yeah my gantry will be about 1100mm with approx 900mm working area. I am designing the z-axis so that I can use something like a JGL-100 2.5kW ATC spindle if I want. That spindle alone is almost 8kg. I estimate the Z-axis to be around 40kg in total with the ATC spindle, which is not too bad. Ill just skip the plate and shim the profile if needed.
    You won't have any issues with profile that size at this short length. I've built several machines around that width and wider using 120 x 80 and it is more than strong enough.

    On my larger machines I use 160 x 80 profile with much wider gantries and in fact, I'm currently building a 10 x 5 with gantry over 2mtr wide with 4.5Kw ATC spindle that is around 15Kg which it doesn't even know is attached.

    By adding plates and using oversized Profile all your doing is adding weight which is making motors etc work harder and costing more money and performance. Overbuilding isn't always a good thing and can be negative to machine performance, esp for routers using steppers that work at high feeds where torque is lower.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by JAZZCNC View Post
    You won't have any issues with profile that size at this short length. I've built several machines around that width and wider using 120 x 80 and it is more than strong enough.

    On my larger machines I use 160 x 80 profile with much wider gantries and in fact, I'm currently building a 10 x 5 with gantry over 2mtr wide with 4.5Kw ATC spindle that is around 15Kg which it doesn't even know is attached.

    By adding plates and using oversized Profile all your doing is adding weight which is making motors etc work harder and costing more money and performance. Overbuilding isn't always a good thing and can be negative to machine performance, esp for routers using steppers that work at high feeds where torque is lower.
    First I should maybe explain what I intend to use the machine for. I want to be able to mill aluminium very efficiently and also mild steel with good results. I have seen quite a lot of people being able to do that!

    I already have the servomotors I intend to use with 1605 ballscrews & 20mm hiwin linear rails. The servomotors are 180W JMC iHSV57-30-18-36, see the link for specs:
    https://www.sorotec.de/shop/JMC-Serv...-min-7908.html

    So you believe I could downsize the gantry to a 80x160 profile and not notice any significant difference in cutting performance? If yes, I will definately downsize.

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  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by NordicCnc View Post
    First I should maybe explain what I intend to use the machine for. I want to be able to mill aluminium very efficiently and also mild steel with good results. I have seen quite a lot of people being able to do that!

    I already have the servomotors I intend to use with 1605 ballscrews & 20mm hiwin linear rails. The servomotors are 180W JMC iHSV57-30-18-36, see the link for specs:
    https://www.sorotec.de/shop/JMC-Serv...-min-7908.html
    Ok do you intend to run a ratio on those screws/motors.? 3000Rpm is too fast for a 16mm diameter screw. Also 180w isn't a lot of power if your planning on a heavy gantry/spindle and wanting to cut steel.!

    To be honest, if your wanting to mostly cut Aluminium and steel then I'd consider a different style of machine or build it from different materials. Because to cut steel correctly with a good finish and not have the machine fall apart in a short amount of time then it needs to be built very strong.
    Aluminum Profile is great for a gantry on a general-purpose wood router which will occasionally cut aluminum to half-decent finish, but for a machine that's going to mostly cut aluminum and steel and too a Med/high level then you'll need a much stronger gantry built from Thick walled steel tube or plate weldment design.!! . . . You then open up other factors like now your motors really will not have enough power.

    Cutting steel correctly to give a good finish with sensible tool life is very different from aluminum or wood and in my experience, it's recipe for disaster on a moving gantry router design unless it's built to handle it from the start and massively over-engineered like Boyan's machine. It must also have the correct spindle. Profile and the spindle you show are both not ideal for cutting steel.!

    I've not seen your design for the router but given the spec of materials and parts, I would consider a Fixed gantry design if Cutting steels or aluminum.

    Also, don't be fooled by videos you see on Youtube showing router machines cutting steel, yes they may do it for a video or two, but for how long and at what cost in terms of tool life and stress on the machine.? . . They never show or tell you this.!

    Quote Originally Posted by NordicCnc View Post
    So you believe I could downsize the gantry to a 80x160 profile and not notice any significant difference in cutting performance? If yes, I will definately downsize.
    Given the above then for a Wood/Aluminium machine then yes easily.! . . . Steel, forget Aluminium profile of any size.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by JAZZCNC View Post
    Ok do you intend to run a ratio on those screws/motors.? 3000Rpm is too fast for a 16mm diameter screw. Also 180w isn't a lot of power if your planning on a heavy gantry/spindle and wanting to cut steel.!
    Good point. I think 1610 with a 2:1 ratio would be better. That would give me 15000mm/min feedrate and keep the RPM of the ballscrew at 1500. 2010 is probably overkill.

    Quote Originally Posted by JAZZCNC View Post
    I've not seen your design for the router but given the spec of materials and parts, I would consider a Fixed gantry design if Cutting steels or aluminum.

    Also, don't be fooled by videos you see on Youtube showing router machines cutting steel, yes they may do it for a video or two, but for how long and at what cost in terms of tool life and stress on the machine.? . . They never show or tell you this.!
    The machine will have to be made with moving gantry because I require a work area of minimun 1000x800mm for woodworking. The steel machining I am talking about would be machining parts for a new machine in steel in the far future, that would be designed for cutting steel only. This one would then be with fixed Z-axis. Also for the video, here is some german guy running 1605 with those same servomotor, cutting aluminium: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=xyVr35pgx7s
    [/QUOTE]

    Quote Originally Posted by JAZZCNC View Post
    Given the above then for a Wood/Aluminium machine then yes easily.! . . . Steel, forget Aluminium profile of any size.
    I will consider 80x160 since the steel machining would be limited to a minimum (see my comment above). Thanks for your detailed answer!



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  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by NordicCnc View Post
    Good point. I think 1610 with a 2:1 ratio would be better. That would give me 15000mm/min feedrate and keep the RPM of the ballscrew at 1500. 2010 is probably overkill.
    Yes 2010 would be over kill and would actually lower performance or should say stress the motors more because your having to deal with the extra inertia of larger screw and ballnut.



    Quote Originally Posted by NordicCnc View Post
    The machine will have to be made with moving gantry because I require a work area of minimun 1000x800mm for woodworking. The steel machining I am talking about would be machining parts for a new machine in steel in the far future, that would be designed for cutting steel only. This one would then be with fixed Z-axis. Also for the video, here is some german guy running 1605 with those same servomotor, cutting aluminium:
    Cutting aluminium isn't a problem with 1605 or 180W servos, esp using adaptive tool paths like they are using as the feed rates are much lower and forces are not too high. However Steel is a different mattter and the forces are much higher.
    My comment about the motor power being on the low side and the speed is mainly aimed at higher feed rates when cutting soft materials which require high feed rates, also at rapid speeds when bringing a heavy gantry to a stop or fast directional changes. This is where low power motors struggle, with steppers you'd lose steps but with a servo you'll get high following errors and potential fault trips.

    Quote Originally Posted by NordicCnc View Post
    I will consider 80x160 since the steel machining would be limited to a minimum (see my comment above). Thanks for your detailed answer!
    Experience as shown me that building a moving Gantry machine that can cut everything including steels and cut them correctly without destroying itself is very difficult to do and profile section isn't strong enough for a machine like this. You need much stronger materials like steel or Epoxy granite and ideally a fixed gantry.
    In your case it will serve your needs for very occasional steel work but don't expect to take heavy cuts or have great finish.

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