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IndustryArena Forum > MetalWorking Machines > Tormach Personal CNC Mill > Material to build a enclosure for my 440
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  1. #1
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    Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    Hi ! So i want to make an enclosure to my 440, i bought a bunch of 2020 aluminum extrusion with hardware, butyl tape, Permatex "The right stuff", i gonna buy some plexiglass for the door and the front of the machine but i would like to put some cheaper stuff on the side and top to cut down the price (i dont know for you in the USA but here in Canada, quebec, plexiglas and polycarbonate are expensive now because of the covid), i gonna run coolant so it need to be water/coolant resistant, im wondering if this type of plastic sheet will work:
    https://www.homedepot.com/p/Coroplas...896S/205351385

    Thanks!

  2. #2

    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    that corrugated plastic lasts a while but it breaks down from the coolant . Aluminum or steel sheet is your best bet

  3. #3
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    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    Quote Originally Posted by metalmayhem View Post
    that corrugated plastic lasts a while but it breaks down from the coolant . Aluminum or steel sheet is your best bet

    Oh i didn't think about thin aluminum sheet. Thanks!

  4. #4
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    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    It may cost more but I would use Lexan (polycarbonate) for the door rather than plexiglas. It will stop any errant piece of stock rather than shattering.

  5. #5
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    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    I'll second the advice above about using Lexan. It stands up to impact well.

    I wanted an enclosure for the mill but it was quite expensive to get one from the manufacturer. You can design your own and have it cut and bent at a local sheet metal shop. I riveted on U shaped channel on to flat panels that hook on to the lower splash pan. I never put a top on it and need to install some doors also on the back side of the mill. The price was not too bad I'm also in Canada. Mine is made out of galvanized steel and will last as long as the mill. The back and front are bolted to each other. Find a local sheet metal shop. For them it will be an easy job.

    The back part in the middle will eventually get sliding doors. For now I am using plastic sheets. Held in place with magnets. The stuff they use for vapour barriers. It works fine. If you need a top and want to save money you can use a sheet of plastic.

  6. #6
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    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    Mine (on a 770 rather than a 440) is made of 30x30 imitation 80/20 aluminum made by Bosch. All panels are Lexan and it is still going strong after at least 5 years. On the other hand I use mist rather than flood coolant. As an aside, much of the North American Lexan is processed by Sabic a few miles from my shop.

  7. #7

    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    a good point is the possibility of a launched part , This was from a chunk 1/2x2x6 that was tossed at 10k when my 440's coolant line clogged without me knowing it , It's 22 gage steel and judging by the impact I'd have been seriously hurt if I got hit with it

  8. #8

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    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    It is both amazing and terrifying the damage a small, lightweight piece of material can do once it's accelerated to a high speed. Hell, I've had to pick chips out of myself after getting careless with an air gun. You wouldn't think something with a cross section measured in thousandths of an inch would have enough inertia to do any damage but it definitely hurt.

  9. #9
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    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    I'm glad that I am not the only one scared of high speed aluminum bullets. I feel much safer hiding behind my 1/4-inch thick Lexan enclosure doors.

  10. #10

    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    lexan is surprisingly tough . A number of yrs ago I was day dreaming and lightly leaning up against the door of a production mill . A part got launched at a high rate of speed and smacked the door where my arm was , the part penetrated the lexan a bit but fortunately it didn't come through , I had some pretty good bruising on my arm but it was better than needing the part removed from my body .
    I've found that under heavy coolant conditions lexan has about a 5 yr life for it to be 100% good . It'll stay fairly well but it will get brittle over time .

    Protection is good for many reasons , even a broken drill can explode with pieces flying in every direction

  11. #11

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    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    Also, if you're an idiot that doesn't know how to seat a JT taper chuck, a drill can suck itself and the chuck off an arbor and whip around in the partially completed hole before flying off into space. Uhh, I mean, that's what I've heard from someone else...

  12. #12
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    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    Can confirm.

  13. #13
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    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    Quote Originally Posted by metalmayhem View Post
    a good point is the possibility of a launched part , This was from a chunk 1/2x2x6 that was tossed at 10k when my 440's coolant line clogged without me knowing it , It's 22 gage steel and judging by the impact I'd have been seriously hurt if I got hit with it
    ...yes-I wonder what the fps is of a 1/2" HSS tool breaking off is in realtime ?

    faster than a speeding .223?

  14. #14
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    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    Quote Originally Posted by machinehop5 View Post
    ...yes-I wonder what the fps is of a 1/2" HSS tool breaking off is in realtime ?

    faster than a speeding .223?
    Probably not or we'd have to line mills with Kevlar. Divide SFM by 60 to get feet per second of the outer diameter of the tool..

  15. #15
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    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    Yes but a chunk of aluminum has considerably more mass than a speeding .223

  16. #16

    Re: Material to build a enclosure for my 440

    The walls of my enclosure are Fiberglass reinforced plastic. It works well and easy to clean and wash down. Chips tend to dry and stick to it, but with a brush it just falls off, and it hasn'
    t stained or discolored in any way. It's also very reflective so light inside the mill is quite good.

    I use plexiglass for my windows, but it is indeed rather brittle. I had an 1/8" drill go through the front window and disappear into the shop once. I was pretty glad I wasn't standing in front of the glass when it happened. The windows was ruined as a result. Lexan would indeed be better, but I haver taken to replacing the windows every year or so just because they get so scratched up and hard to see through after a while. So the cheaper material is the one i have stuck with.

    https://www.homedepot.com/p/Glasline...041/202085623?

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