Just a quick note to say Hi to everyone on the site.
I'm looking to build by own 3 axis mill/router to general model engineering work, and parts for my other hobby - model rocktry..and therein lies my 1st simple question...
I have seen on the various web sites that cnc mills generally have a fixed milling head and a moving table, whereas routers have a moving milling head.
Do I have this right ? and if so whats the advantage/disadvantage?
Originally Posted by mudscience
Yes thats right. Generally routers have a wider working area but a lower accuracy. For high accuracy you need rigidity and thats hard to acheive in a moving head machine. For precision work a mill will, generally, outperform a router. If you're into making foam aircraft wings, guitar bodies, signs and the like then a router will be the way to go... if you want to cut precision parts out of aluminium/brass or harder metals eg steel, then a mill is the way to go. As always there is a grey area in the middle, some of our members routers with high-speed spindles are capable of some good work in aluminium. Similarly, if you are looking to make printed circuit boards using isolation routing a small working area router arrangement is quite common because rigidity is less of an issue when milling 0.3mm thick copper sheet!
irving2008, thanks for the reply, extactly what I was looking for.
I should have explained that pcb creation was on my list, well anticipated :)
Generally I'll be working with balsa, light woods, plastics, might like to do a bit on aluminium, but nothing heavier.
So I think I'll plan for a router style, maybe 12" x 18"
Thanks again for the great advice