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IndustryArena Forum > MetalWorking Machines > Benchtop Machines > 7 Axis Swiss Mill-Turn (DIY)
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  1. #1
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    Lightbulb 7 Axis Swiss Mill-Turn (DIY)

    Hey everyone! I haven't posted here in 4 years, but I have something that I think you'll find interesting. I built a Swiss type CNC mill-turn center. This was a DIY project, 2k budget. What you see here is actually the 2nd prototype. The reason I'm posting this now is because I'm planning a crowdfunding campaign soon, I and need some feedback ahead of time. To summarize, I got into building this because I was manufacturing 3d printer hotends and the machining costs were kind of high. So I designed and machined the machine you see below.

    It's sized for a 6 inch chuck on the main turning spindle, and the swiveling milling head is a 30 taper. I built this thing as rigid as possible. The milling head spindle bearings are larger than on a bridgeport. The other bearings have a 100mm diameter OD. The machine base is a solid 4x4 square bar, just under 4 feet long. All linear axes are large boxways, I know the people around here seem to love linear guides, but I prefer my machines to have that old school stoutness that you can't get with fancy drawer slides. And no ballscrews either. I've extensively tested my linear axis motion; positioning repeatability is a few ten-thousandths, backlash is under 0.0006". Checked with a dial indicator. I wouldn't have been able to make this machine with $2,000 if I had to spend $2,000 on the rails and screws alone!

    The whole thing is controlled by a 3d printer control board. Saves a lot of money, and 3d printer tech has a much larger community that has overcome many of the glitches that still plague cheap CNC machine controls. This machine is compatible with NEMA 23, 24, and 34 steppers and servos, but I plan on using a lot of ODrive servos in the production version. The main turning and milling spindles already have them, they're closed loop systems that allow for rigid tapping and threading and stuff. Plus, they're approximately 10 times more accurate than steppers and ridiculously fast in comparison.



    I pity the foo who can't see these glorious GIFs. It may take a minute to load them if you have bad internet. There should be 6 of them directly below, and they should look just like a 30 FPS video if they're playing normally. The gifs are hosted on the Hackaday forums since they don't have restrictive file size limits over there.








    I don't think this forum allows post editing, so I'll have to fill in the details in subsequent posts. More pictures and videos to come. Ask any questions you can think of. Critique all you want, I'll try to respond to everything.

  2. #2
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    Re: 7 Axis Swiss Mill-Turn (DIY)

    this...is..amazing...

    I'd love to see build pictures.

  3. #3
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    Re: 7 Axis Swiss Mill-Turn (DIY)

    That's awesome! Do you have a build thread?

  4. #4
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    Re: 7 Axis Swiss Mill-Turn (DIY)

    Here's the first bit of progress from last July. Let me know if you'd rather have the build thread pictures as GIFs or still images.


  5. #5
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    Re: 7 Axis Swiss Mill-Turn (DIY)

    GIFS GIFS GIFS :banana:

  6. #6
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    Re: 7 Axis Swiss Mill-Turn (DIY)

    I like ur build , is clean , and working .
    All parts are made from aluminum ?
    Can u process brass , or steel with ur build?
    What do u use for linear movement if u dont use ballscrews ?

  7. #7
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    Re: 7 Axis Swiss Mill-Turn (DIY)

    Wow!
    That thing has more moves that a fat belly dancer! :cheers:
    What software are you using to drive all the axis? I can't imagine trying to keep up with all the available cutting planes!
    Great Machine!
    Very impressive!
    Thanks for posting.
    Bill
    billyjack
    Helicopter def. = Bunch of spare parts flying in close formation! USAF 1974 ;>)

  8. #8
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    Re: 7 Axis Swiss Mill-Turn (DIY)

    GIFs GIFs GIFs:banana:

  9. #9
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    Turning GIFs pls!

  10. #10
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    Re: 7 Axis Swiss Mill-Turn (DIY)

    Also is that <2k for the just the aluminum or for the entire thing? Because if you managed to make all of that for under 2k i want to know where you're shopping lol.

  11. #11
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    Re: 7 Axis Swiss Mill-Turn (DIY)

    Quote Originally Posted by Andreiir View Post
    I like ur build , is clean , and working .
    All parts are made from aluminum ?
    Can u process brass , or steel with ur build?
    What do u use for linear movement if u dont use ballscrews ?
    Ya curious as well if the box ways and the slides are all aluminum. If so I'd think they would gall and wear quite fast. Then also how you're getting such accuracy from regular acme screws if you're not using ball screws.

  12. #12
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    Re: 7 Axis Swiss Mill-Turn (DIY)

    To answer your questions:

    1) All parts are made from aluminum ?
    Nope. The spindles, shafts, and hardware parts are all steel. The big structural parts are solid aluminum.

    2) Can u process brass , or steel with ur build?
    Yes, it cuts anything softer than tungsten carbide. I have a steel and a brass part in the video, as well as aluminum and plastic.

    3) What do u use for linear movement if u dont use ballscrews ?
    Leadscrews with roller thrust bearings and long, zero-clearance, double adjustable, lockable anti-backlash nuts. More on these later.

    4) What software are you using to drive all the axis?
    Repetier host for now. I'll make a custom GUI for the production version of the machine.

    5) Also is that <2k for the just the aluminum or for the entire thing?
    Entire thing. The 6061 I bought was 3 to 4 dollars per lb, and comprised the majority of the build cost. In production this will be $2 -$2.50 per lb for bulk purchases.

    6) Ya curious as well if the box ways and the slides are all aluminum. If so I'd think they would gall and wear quite fast.
    The boxways are aluminum but there are acetal wear pads under each moving assembly. No metal on metal contact to gall. The production version will be hard anodized with PTFE.


    A few more GIFs;



    This last one is to prove my point about the linear repeatability of this machine. You can see from the needle that movement is smooth to the micron, and doesn't have much backlash. It's about as good as industrial machines in this aspect.

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