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Contrariwise -- A C-Beam Router

Discussion in 'CNC Mills/Routers' started by Jonathon Duerig, Jun 7, 2016.

  1. Jonathon Duerig

    Jonathon Duerig Veteran
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    Jonathon Duerig published a new build:

    Read more about this build...
     
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  2. GrayUK

    GrayUK Master
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    Keep us up to date with the progress please. I shall watch your build with interest.
    Good Luck. :thumbsup:
     
  3. Jonathon Duerig

    Jonathon Duerig Veteran
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    @GrayUK Thanks. I just updated with todays progress. The table/shelf base structure is complete. I'm at last starting to put together the actual pieces of the router.

    -D
     
  4. Moag

    Moag Master
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  5. Jonathon Duerig

    Jonathon Duerig Veteran
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    More progress today. A first look at the X-axis and the electronics base board. No custom plates for the X-Axis gantries. Instead, I use a vertical piece of extrusion which will attach to the standard double wide C-Beam gantry plates at the bottom and the C-Beam of the X-Axis at the top.

    -D
     
  6. Jonathon Duerig

    Jonathon Duerig Veteran
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    The mechanical and wiring parts are now complete. Now just to test things out. Also it is time to start thinking about dust collection and workholding. I have some ideas to try out there.

    -D
     
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  7. Jonathon Duerig

    Jonathon Duerig Veteran
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    I managed to make my first cut today. The hybrid pressure foot and dust shoe seems to work pretty well. The vacuum doesn't collect all of the debris, but it does seem to do a great job at keeping it contained. The main problem is that I need to increase the clamping force of the pressure foot to make sure that even small pieces stay where they are as I cut them out. One of my main goals of this is to avoid the annoying and time consuming task of breaking the tabs off of pieces.

    -D
     
  8. Kyo

    Kyo Master
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    Your build is looking awesome, I really like the built in table / Stand. :thumbsup:
     
  9. Jonathon Duerig

    Jonathon Duerig Veteran
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    And this build is complete. I'm actually producing parts. The main pieces seem pretty standard. But here are the things I think work best and the lessons I feel I've learned:

    - For a large cnc router, build it into a sturdy table. The best place for the electronics is underneath the spoilboard since that will be the place that gets the least swarf/dust even if it isn't enclosed.
    - Build with all the 'upgrades' you plan in mind. Homing switches are essential for production work. Drag chain is not optional at this size. Dust collection is essential, but it is a win if it contains the mess for later cleanup even if not all the dust is vacuumed up.
    - The router is only as useful as your workholding system. The difference between an ad-hoc workholding system and a well thought out one is the difference between a hobby machine and one that can be used professionally. Speed and other 'professional' features don't matter as much because that is cheap table time while workholding and cutting out tabs is precious human time.
    - For cutting small parts out of thin (1/8") material, a pressure foot is worth its weight in gold. On larger parts, other clamping mechanisms work better. But avoiding tabs means avoiding a lot of human effort.

    -D
     
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  10. LukasK

    LukasK Well-Known
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    Hi Jonathon, your build looks very nice! I plan build (already started to source parts) similar to yours, c-beam used for all axes also utilizing double wide gantry plates. Could you please post some detailed photos of the connection between 80x20 and c-beam used for x axes? Is it stiff enough? And more question, what clearance height have you chosen between y and x c-beam profiles?

    L
     
  11. Jonathon Duerig

    Jonathon Duerig Veteran
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    @LukasK I can take a few more photos of the connection. I went a bit overboard on it. I had a double L-Bracket on either side, an L-plate where the two are flush, and a single L-Bracket screwed to a three-hole strip plate opposite. There has been no flex on it as far as I can see. The flexing of the machine is entirely in the wheels in the X-axis gantry.

    The clearance height between Y and X profiles is driven entirely by the presences of the L-Bracket. So it needs to be at least 40mm. You could have as little as 20mm clearance if you were willing to turn the L-Bracket into a strip plate. Since the connection between them is so secure, that might be reasonable.

    The biggest point of flex in this machine is the wheels on the X gantry plate. So if I had it to do over again (and I might switch to this in the future), I would try using a pair of X-Large gantry plates instead of the double-wide plate there and end up with something like this:

    http://cdn1.bigcommerce.com/server2...uploaded_images/untitled.191.jpg?t=1461787092

    The doubled up wheels running along the outside of the C-Beam with larger distance between them would reduce the amount of flex significantly. And it would let me turn the C-Beam around so that the interior section with the lead screw would be less likely to get dust or grit from the cutter.

    I look forward to seeing your build. And feel free to ask me about anything else that I've done or my experience with it.

    -D
     
  12. LukasK

    LukasK Well-Known
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    @Jonathon Duerig thanks for ideas!

    I assumed that from the "inside" of the connection you have double L bracket similary to the outside, no need for more photos, thanks!

    Really interesting idea with the double xlarge gantry plate. I was fixed to solution with double wide plate with inner wheels, and didn't realize the flex at this point. Thinking about going the suggested way!

    By the way what you think about the using two double wide plates next to each other on y axes as shown on the picture you reffered to? Would it provide some extra strenght? Is needed at this point?

    L.
     
  13. Jonathon Duerig

    Jonathon Duerig Veteran
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    @LukasK I don't see a lot of advantages in X-Large plates on the Y-axis. If I wanted to have a very broad base of support, I would use two normal gantries or two double-wide gantries instead. For cutting wood or plastic, that seems like overkill anyhow.

    Since the X-Large plates have wheels that run on the outside, they would interfere with support crossbeams connected underneath. I think having several support crossbeams is essential to making a solid base.

    And since the Y-Axis supports the X-Axis on both sides, there is not nearly as much twist, so that benefit doesn't seem as great.

    -D
     
  14. LukasK

    LukasK Well-Known
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    @Jonathon Duerig I have messed two thing together, I have meant two double-wide gantries in the same layout as on the photo where xlarge were used.

    Anyway you have answeed that as well, thx:)
     

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