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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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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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__
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Re: New CNC machine in the southern Mooselake Manor

Postby Mooselake » 2019-Dec-Sun-21-Dec

__Vinz__ wrote:X axis hits the chassis when homing, at the same time it triggers the endstop, did not happen with the original Printrboard ...

Little slow on the response, sorry. Does that mean you need to readjust the adjuster screw? Does the Play have those? Maybe move the switch somehow, or as a last resort add a shim?

Fell victim to Black Friday, ordered an Ender 3 Pro for the southern Mooseshop that shipped today. Had I known we'd be here so long I'd have found a way to shoehorn the Thingybot Delta into the trailer, along with the big box of 1.75mm filament. In case somebody's still here maybe I'll try a review of it vs what I remember of the Plywood Plus, see how the export (import to us) megafactory cheap (a hair over $200US on sale, like $70US off the never used "list" price) 3D printer compares to a well tweaked PB. Could be interesting. Still has a 2012 class controller board (replacement sells around $40US, not the 129 iirc of the original printrboard) and newer marlin, no alien probing device, and only a single screw Z drive. Prusa i2 themed frame, made from aluminum extrusion, MK10 (whatever the heck that is) bowden extruder; plan to replace it with a dual drive gear version that's cheaper than the beta gears in my plus, but will wait and see how it works first. One roll of Hatchbox black (i.e. leftovers and floor sweepings) PLA just so there's something to print with. The filament market has changed since last I looked. HH3DP seems to be permanently out of stock of what they used to make, don't know what all these "silk" and other filaments that have popped up are, and we all know that Amazon reviews are suspect. Hope the knee will let me sit in a desk chair (yes, gasp, oldish moose need a chair these days) so I can do the supposedly minimal "20 screw" assembly, level it (need another RJ dial gauge holder, not to mention the gauge), and see what happens. Should have bought an i3 MK3 (or whatever it's up to) and MMU, but, well, two hundred bucks.

Kirk
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Re: New CNC machine in the southern Mooselake Manor

Postby Mooselake » 2019-Dec-Wed-11-Dec

The Ender 3 is assembled, an hour and a half including time to dink with a not quite tapped right hole (put the screw in from the other side to clean up the threads), Plugged it in, powered it up, nothing. Out of time so walked away. Tried another power strip from another outlet (the first one worked fine for a lamp) a couple hours later. Lights! Camera! (well, not really) Action!. Using the control panel all axes moved, the extruder and bed heated up, and looks like things work. Alas, the mini (not micro...) USB cable didn't make into the box, rather than screw around with having another shipped from China just spent 6 bux (minor amount of obscure US currency) on the Bezotian money sucker and it'll be here in a couple days. Until then it has a included SD card (looks like it even came with an USB card burner) that will suffice.

Plan to dredge up the original Printrbot axis exercising burn in tests, the extruder volumetric test of AMU days (lets see how this sucker compares to the Ubis HF, not expecting much), and maybe a Celtic Coaster test print. Only bought a single spool of Hatchbox Black (and we all know that means floor sweepings and leftovers but it was ON SALE!) for now, with the enormous filament stash (nicely packed in gasketed boxes with crystal kitty litter) at the Mooseshop no point in getting carried away.

Initial impressions are good, 8 years of development has resulted in a better than Plywood Printrbot product for a quarter the price. The design is a Prusa i2 (or maybe 3) knockoff made out of decent sized aluminum extrusion (looks like v-slot knockoff) where all moving parts are rollers on extrusion groves (other than the TR8-8 Z screw), the controller board is essentially (afaik) a AT90USB1286 Printrboard clone with a separate display), the plastic extruder (soon to be replaced with a dual-gear aluminum version that costs less than PB's beta dual gears) isn't impressive but reportedly functional, and we'll see how the hot end squirts plastic. The Pro comes with a not all that impressive on examination magnetic flex bed, seems to be a sign magnet sheet with some type of print surface glued to it with a bed temp limited by demagnetization. The print bed is an aluminum pcb sandwich (think they call that a MK3) with no additional support, and reportedly sags a bit although I haven't tried to "level" this one yet. It has a Meanwell (good name Chinese) 24V switching power supply with a switched power inlet and all the sparky bits enclosed, no repurposed demontek PC supply. Reportedly no bootloader on the controller board and it's Marlin 1.1.6 without easy flashing (one could say that's an advantage...). For under $40US I can get a 32 bit arm-based with TMC driver replacement board that runs 32 bit Marlin 2.x, and while I'm not in a hurry to start modding (actual experience may alter that) that may be better than trying to go through the seems to be rather difficult and take an Arduino Uno reflashing. After all I'm a 32 bit proponent who should follow through.

Shoulda remembered to bring a 3D printer down here, didn't really plan on an infected knee and skipping summer in Mooselake, but that's reality. It does look kinda cute with the 3018 on the left, the laptop in the center, and the Ender 3 on the right. Maybe some photos after a bit of cleanup, just in case there's anybody left here

Sad Brook didn't take this approach instead of trying for the high end where PB didn't have any reputation and didn't seem to live up. They could have made a better version of this worth at least a small price premium, rather than cloudy software, DIY board stuffing, and expensive in-house bent metal.

KIrk
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Re: New CNC machine in the southern Mooselake Manor

Postby novice » 2019-Dec-Tue-09-Dec

Good to hear you're still tinkering Moose in spite of all. I too fell for that pre-Christmas "rush" with an Ender 5 purchase that likely won't see assembly until after the New Year. Been watching "Teaching Tech" on Youtube and he has provided a good deal of insight regarding Marlin 1.1.9 / Creality 1.1.5. In the meanwhile have been spending a couple moments each day attempting to learn navigation and shortcut commands for Fusion, just to keep from feeling like a dummy. This laser cut Sub-frame on the current project is a result of that. Now it's your turn, show us some pictures.

138ae7c0.jpg


14185640.jpg
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Re: New CNC machine in the southern Mooselake Manor

Postby Mooselake » 2019-Dec-Tue-10-Dec

We all know that great bots start with laser cut plywood :)

Haven't done a whole lot of printing with it, nor any serious pic taking, but here's the spare bedroom CNC/3DP table. Pretty happy, about all I did was install the 24 screws, a sheet of paper leveling,(actually used a small siip, but a full sheet would have made it easier), the old PB+ sized burnin tests, and fired it up with the usual celtic coaster (always need more coasters). First one warped when removing from the near-worthless sign magnet print surface (which sticks really really well). Second one had a bottom defect, think the prime plastic string got caught (the hot end has the nanny state complete metal cover, so you can't see the nozzle printing) but is now holding my water jug (hey, it's Florida). Did 8 cable clips to dress up a couple wires, no problem despite being tall and low surface area. It's further along than my Plus after it's first couple days.

Here's the only picture so far...

Kirk
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