New CNC machine in the southern Mooselake Manor

New CNC machine in the southern Mooselake Manor

Postby Mooselake » 2019-Jul-Wed-17-Jul

Now that my infected fake knee has improved enough to do more than hang out in the La-Z-Boy I went and bought an amazingly cheap 3018 CNC router (and a smallish wood lathe, but I digress). It took a couple hours to assemble but I wasn't rushing, and so far has worked better than I expected. The spindle is around a hundred watts so it's not a speed demon. It'll cut pine at 20 ipm and 0.10" depth of cut (8mm/sec at 2.5mm) with a 3/32 (call it 2mm) endmill, but it sounded like it was chattering and not happy; I'll need to recreate the feed and speed tests that are in the northerly mooselake manor and put it through it's paces. While the spindle is slower (somewhere around 7 to 10K rpm) than the Zenbot Mini's 20K+ it doesn't do as good a job of throwing chips/sawdust everywhere. Good thing since it's in one corner of the garage sized living room. Before you warn me about Mrs. Moose she was the one that suggested it go there... I keep the "bagless" cheaper vac next to it, seems to work. If I had a reasonable shop here it would quickly have an enclosure, but that's a way off.

If you're interested in an inexpensive start to CNC routing this is a good choice. The deluxe version upgrades the sides from 2020 to 2040 extrusions, and replaces the ends and side supports with pre-drilled phenolic and eliminates the need to fiddle and adjust to get things square and the carriage moving freely. The one I linked to's major advantage is a detailed assembly manual (mostly what order and where to install around 50 socket head cap screws), although this information is freely available on the net. The cheaper model is a lot more finicky and not as stiff, although it has the same integrated controller (kinda sorta like a Printrboard minus a few MOSFETS) and power supply, IMHO well worth the small additional cost. The price of the one I linked to varies wildly, two days after I ordered it it went from $200 to $260, then back to the $220 or so range. There's a number of identical versions on Amazon and the usual sources for less than the SainSmart has gone up to.

It comes with GRBL 1.1f preinstalled and a CD of dated software. I downloaded Candle (there's other gcode senders but that's what they included) and for grins Carbide Create as a simple CAD/CAM program. Free CAD/CAM software has changed for the better since I last dinked around with my ZB Mini, and there are a lot of other choices. The machine doesn't have endstops, but they're not as important as on our Printrbots. The controller and firmware have provisions for them and they're on the to-do list. The shopless situation means I'll likely hot glue some microswitches and CNC routed (well, duh!) brackets in the appropriate places, but for now I just manually touch off where necessary and go from there. GRBL actually understands workspaces, moving zero points, and negative coordinates so other than banging into the hard stops and manually rezeroing (or being more careful) it's good enough for now. I'd recommend it if you want a low budget intro to CNC routing.

Almost picked up an Ender 3 Pro 3D printer too (not a Prusa, but hopefully good enough for here and now) for the left up north Printrbot and Thingybot Delta, but the lathe (a lot heavier and taller than I was expecting after seeing a room full of 10x15 Jets, need a lower workbench) and router fill up enough time for the moment, not to mention the dent in the toy budget

Kirk
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Modified KickStarter Classic Plus 7/2012
KS Thingybot Delta Pro 10/31/16
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Mooselake
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New CNC machine in the southern Mooselake Manor

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Re: New CNC machine in the southern Mooselake Manor

Postby __Vinz__ » 2019-Nov-Thu-16-Nov

Hi there,

Long time not logged in. A very interesting machine indeed as I am looking at starting to learn the CNC basics, thanks much for the pointer and the feedback!
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Printrbot Play Kit from Nov 2015 - Rev F5 printrboard
Y axis with heated bed upgrade - installed Oct 2016
Z lead screw 4-start + blower fan upgrade - installed April 2017
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Re: New CNC machine in the southern Mooselake Manor

Postby Mooselake » 2019-Nov-Fri-13-Nov

I've been happy with the 3018 Pro, even bought a spring loaded diamond drag bit and had some fun with that. Had to do little hot-glue stiffening on the anti-backlash nuts because it was jumping between close together (like a tenth or two of a mm) lines, must have been a little play, but that sorted it out. I'm learning about straight line guilloche machines (pretty esoteric...) and trying to write a simulator to be able to engrave their patterns with the 3018. Won't be making 10K dollar/euro watch faces with it, but it's been fun.

The surgical steel guys intervened again, the (hopefully last of 4) knee surgery was a couple days ago and I'll be suffering with hospital food for a few more days. Might be a few weeks until I get enough bend back that I can comfortably sit in a chair in front of the router again.

I read the 82 page install manual and decided it wasn't a DIY (pass me that chain saw please) project. This is a revision joint (Biomet Vanguard 360 if I understood the pre-surgery comments correctly), a replacement for a 6 year old artificial joint that became infected. You'd think that moose would benefit from having enough redundancy to get around knee problems, but it didn't work that way this time. Quite sore but at least all these electronic gadgets make it possible to ignore it most of the time.

Glad to see returning members!

Kirk
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Modified KickStarter Classic Plus 7/2012
KS Thingybot Delta Pro 10/31/16
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Mooselake
My next printer is...
 
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Re: New CNC machine in the southern Mooselake Manor

Postby __Vinz__ » 2019-Nov-Fri-16-Nov

Thanks for your reply Kirk, and thanks for always keeping up the good spirits (surgery is definitely not fun :( !

I am getting back to my Play, whose Printrboard had died so I had replaced it with a G2. It appears to work fine but I need to do more testing here. Will scour the forum for more information on such an upgrade too: things appear to work fine but X axis hits the chassis when homing, at the same time it triggers the endstop, did not happen with the original Printrboard ...
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Printrbot Play Kit from Nov 2015 - Rev F5 printrboard
Y axis with heated bed upgrade - installed Oct 2016
Z lead screw 4-start + blower fan upgrade - installed April 2017
__Vinz__
Levelling print bed...
 
Posts: 39
Joined: 2016-May-Tue-23-May
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