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  1. #1
    This is my game. It is being made in China, they do not use cnc.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    It is 246mm square. The green fabric is sandwiched between 2 x 4mm ply grids.

    A year on and Quality control is still an issue so I'm looking into the possibilty of making the games myself.
    Would a CNC machine like the 3040T from do the job?

    By the way, I'm know nothing about CNC machining.


  2. #2
    alot more info and good pictures for you cubikoman
    there is no such thing as a stupid question, just stupid answers !!!!

  3. Okay,

    Possibly but let's look at a few items of cost $890 = approx' 555 + Shipping of $460 which = approx' 287 + Customs ???? (I promise there will be customs on this) + 20% VAT which will be a minimum of 169. That makes the minimum cost for the item to be 1011 and that is not including customs and the VAT on any tariff that you are charged which could add another 10 to 20 % to the cost before VAT is added on.

    Next this is being sold in the US by the Chinese in a hope to capitalize on the growth of the hobby and small shop CNC boom that is happening in the US as well as here (even more so in the US according to family over there). Which means that getting any type of support means you PAY to SHIP it to CHINA and hope they will either fix it or send you a new one. Sorry but been burned a few to many times with products from that part of the world and warranties.

    My best suggestion is ask around the board and you might be able to build a basic unit for what you want and need for around that much and in the process get to know what it is you are doing and want done. Also another option is have one of the folks here sit down with you and go over what you need it to do and how often. From there design and build a machine that will do the job and do it well.

    These are just some points and ideas, I don't mean to be a jerk hope it does not come across that way. I just don't like seeing people get burned (happened enough to me already in life).

    Welcome to the board and ask more specific questions about what you want and what you need the machine to do. You can get a lot of help here but you are going to learn a lot as well. CNC requires a good bit of knowledge to be done safely and to get the most out of it. I have been working at it for a few years now and making good progress. Though i wish I knew a good bit than that I know now. Most of us will gladly share knowledge.

    take care and good luck,


  4. #4
    Thankyou for the replies so far.

    Yes H4ppy Chris I've looked at e-bay, it's where I first saw the 3040T. I've even contacted a few of the recent buyers of the 3040T, so far everyone has been satisfied.
    One guy in Finland even blogged about it but there are loads of technical terms which go way over my head.

    Michael, I hadn't really given to much thought past the headline price. I didn't figure on tariffs + VAT. The price is likely to be nearer 1300... quite a bit more. The support and warranty are even more worrying especially as a novice in the field.
    I've seen some videos on YouTube on building a machine but I really can't see myself being that hardcore. I imagine it takes loads of time and patience. I've got loads of patience but I reckon I would never get finished.

    Okay, I've thought of a second way. It came to me whilst gardening after reading your replies. Please feel free to shoot this down if you think it is a non-starter..

    I have built up a very good relationship with my manufacturers, they are very trustworthy. I pay my manufacturers in China $890 + shipping cost, they purchase the machine on my behalf. Support and warranty will be easier to manage from their end. shipping will be much lower. VAT and tariffs may be eliminated. I get my games made more accurately.


  5. Quote Originally Posted by h4ppy-chris View Post
    alot more info and good pictures for you cubikoman
    Just wonder how much it would cost to build machine this spec there in UK buying parts from UK suppliers (parts only) ?? Maybe somebody built one of this kind??

  6. #6
    m.marino hinted that the build cost in the U.K. would be roughly equivalent to the overall costs of importing the machine. How many hours does it take to build a machine though?

  7. Quote Originally Posted by chip View Post
    personaly if i could go back id have saved my money and shopped around for one rather than build but thats me,
    theres some great deals on the bay on occasion if your patient, save yourself a few quid and pick something up with a bigger cutting area.
    two i found today that would have suited me and saved me a small fortune.
    these in the links are nothing to do with me but just an example.
    Of the two above the Z90LSP is a much better bet for what you are wanting to do. you will want the 84mm Z axis travel with the work you are doing. The other advantage of going this rout is that you have control of production, which helps cut down costs on your end from drop shipping. You can also do small test runs of changes without incurring as large a cost as out sourcing.

    I something like that was on the market when I was first looking for a machine I would have bought it that is for sure. On the other hand the knowledge one learns from building will serve anyone well understanding the mechanics behind the tool.

    As to set up and running time from getting it in house? Depends, but should not be more than a week. Less if the area is prepared for the machine and you get a copy of the software you are looking to use and start seeing how it functions.

    There is gcode software for Inkscape and also Image2code, both which work. Also from the looks of your game, you are not looking for tolerances in the .1mm which some of the more advanced software is capable of.

    Just my two pence worth.


  8. #8
    I never considered buying a CNC router ready made. For me the interesting bit is to make it and improve it.

    Remember when working out the customs charges that they charge the 20% VAT on the value quoted on the customs form, which may well be a lot less than what you actually paid! This happened to me with the X axis rails and ballscrew that I bought together, but the actual amount charge was only a couple of percent of what it cost me.

    I'm pretty sure it would end up cheaper to make a similarly capable machine yourself, especially if you're careful with the choice of materials. For instance if you can get away without using aluminium profile that will save a LOT of money. You should certainly buy some of the bits from china/hong kong - spindle and linear bearingse.

    You could use the router to cut much nicer joints on the sides of the box. Fingerjoints, or even dovetails are quite easy if you can fix the wood on to the end of the bed 'vertically' and machine the joints with the corresponding cutter. You don't need much travel to do this. You don't actually even need cnc for that...

  9. Quote Originally Posted by chip View Post
    your spot on there,
    100% agree. before I started to build/design my own CNC mill I knew nothing about it.

  10. #10
    The Z90SLP on e-bay eventually went for 1200 + shipping. So, eventually, the U.K. second hand market on e-bay may be the way forward.

    However, in amoungst all this chat and research, I found Timbmet and now await their quote for supply and cnc for my requirements. I know the price will not complete with the Chinese but I hope it may fit my within my pricing structure.

    I will, of course, post any progress here.

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