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CNC Router Build

September 27 2007  I have begun the construction of a CNC router.  Something I have wanted to do for several years now.  This page will contain links to different parts of the build.  You will need to follow those links to see each part.  The plan is to break things down to manageable pieces so it is easier to explain and duplicate should you choose to do so.  Please note this is an extensive project and will require considerable time and effort to complete.  I am in no way an expert in this. 

My design - Concept, theory, background   :)  
 X Axis construction  Lead Screws machining and mounts
 Y Axis construction  Anti backlash nuts
 Z axis construction  Motor and Mounts
   
 CNC controller - Breakout board  Software
 CNC controller - Motor controllers  Tooling
 CNC controller - Power supply  
   
   
   
 Parts List - build materials and tools  

This project I have put off for years.  Mostly because of the cost.  I have spent a LOT of time looking at every home made router / mill design I could find. Most of the inexpensive builds center around using gas / water pipes for the axis slides.  I have been around plenty of plumbing in my life and one thing I know for sure is that pipe is NOT straight nor is it round.  :)  I figured attempting to use any of the usual methods to align this pipe would drive me nuts.  I admit I am a little anal about some things, tools being one.  If its not quite right I know it and I wont leave it alone till it is or its replaced.

The use of linear slides would be great if I could afford them, but that's just not in the budget for an experimental machine.  I had finally decided to use aluminum extrusions something like 80/20.  These things are great, an erector set for big boys.  :)  The only catch is the bearing slides.  Again we run into a LOT of money.  I could make my own but that would be a lot of time since I don't have a CNC machine.  ;)  hint

While not sleeping one night I ran across this site.  Build Your Own CNC Router Machine  The use of aluminum angle and cheap bearings for slides seems to solve the expensive linear bearings as well as the pipe alignment issues.  Before we go any further I want to explain my design will use some of the concepts of Patrick's machine.  It will incorporate changes I feel will be needed for long term use of the machine.  It will also incorporate "upgrades"  that some might save for a second generation machine or consider not needed.  This is in no way to take away from Patrick's design.  Also keep in mind I have access to a complete wood working shop and metal working equipment. 

December 1 2007  NO  I have not forgotten about this project.  Some things came up as they do.  Then the fall honey do list before the holidays.  There has been progress motors and most of the control components have been ordered collected.  The cabinet I planned to use turned out to be a dud.  An empty VCR case that had too much plastic in the base leaving only the top metal piece to salvage.  Also had some problems with  my Lathe while machining some parts.

 

October 6 2007  Pic showing progress so far  Check links above for details.

 Resources for this project

http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/geckodrive/  
http://www.cnczone.com/  
http://www.cs.uiowa.edu/~jones/step/  
   
   
   
   
   

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