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  1. #41
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    Sep 2012
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    15

    Re: How is it so far?

    Having problems with scale and losing steps on my gantry axis. What stepper driver are you using again? I have done everything short of getting new drivers or putting encoders on, but I don't know of anybody that uses encoders, and their machines run. Mine can't even cut a circle. Nothing is repeatable. It's so frustrating.

  2. #42
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    Dec 2012
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    78

    Re: How is it so far?

    I went with the cncrouterparts nema23 plug and play package. Everything comes in a small package. I really don't know anything about electronics. The learning curve, just connecting everything together and making sure it works was more trouble than I wanted. This way I could just concentrate on the software portion which in it self will take awhile.

  3. #43
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    Sep 2012
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    Re: How is it so far?

    I understand. Problem is, more and more computers don't have parallel ports, and I wound up with a USB Smooth Stepper for my break out board. I have gone through four BOBs and the only thing I haven't changed yet are the cheap stepper controllers themselves. Gecko drives seemed expensive, but the added cost of encoders, now makes a Gecko drive look much more appealing. I am still looking, and plan on buying a new drive in the next day or two to test on the gantry and then evaluate for the other two axes. I just need to get this machine up and running. Any luck making chips with yours yet?

  4. #44
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    Dec 2012
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    78

    Re: How is it so far?

    Well I really haven't cut anything because I still need a spindle. Once I'm able to save enough, I'll be getting the water cooled spindle. I will be getting my spindle from an American company which will cost a little more then the Chinese knock off.

  5. #45
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    Apr 2007
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    Re: How is it so far?

    Quote Originally Posted by rusty13jr View Post
    I understand. Problem is, more and more computers don't have parallel ports, and I wound up with a USB Smooth Stepper for my break out board. I have gone through four BOBs and the only thing I haven't changed yet are the cheap stepper controllers themselves. Gecko drives seemed expensive, but the added cost of encoders, now makes a Gecko drive look much more appealing. I am still looking, and plan on buying a new drive in the next day or two to test on the gantry and then evaluate for the other two axes. I just need to get this machine up and running. Any luck making chips with yours yet?
    I built my first controller/breakout board. More of a learning experience than I bargained for. Learned lots, one of which is to buy them. Bought "cheap" [not inexpensive] first time; second one I bought Gecko 540. In the end was way less expensive. Did own wiring; tinned all ends of the wiring..days of time..but happy with it. Bought factory made male and female connectors, again to save time. Yes seemly more expensive, but it got done and did not bog me down and cause frustration.

    As for a computer. Buy an older computer with parallel port. I run both my CNC 3-axis router on an older computer, both of which run Windows 2000, which I have stripped down to bare essential as not connected to internet. They run fine and don't know the difference.

    As Jerseydog indicated, software side is a lot of learning. I strongly suggest this as the focus of most of time as that is where any user is going to spend most of their time.

    If you give it some thought, ultimately making stuff is what a CNC is about, and a user spends their time interaction with CAD and CAM. And feeds and speeds of course.

    Once controller software [Mach3 for instance], hardware controller, steppers, wiring, limit switches, auto zero, and calibration are done, the machine and those parts just runs.

    FWIW.

  6. #46
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    Dec 2012
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    Re: How is it so far?

    Well I'm done with the over all build of my machine and will like to move into the decision of what spindle to get. I know I want to get a water cooled spindle but the prices fluctuate from one extreme to another. I found this spindle on amazon. Being that I don't know to much of the different manufactures of spindle I will like to get peoples opinion on this one. All I know is I want to buy my spindle from an American company for warranty and overall support. This spindle is my actual first choice but will like to weigh my options. I really don't care to pay double the price for a better spindle. The reason for water cooled is for it's lowered noise. All advice will be really appreciated.

  7. #47
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    Dec 2012
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    Re: How is it so far?

    It's been a long time since my last update. Well I was able to finally get a water cooled spindle for my machine. I thought that the spindle will be plug and play but I was mistaken. It has to be hard wired so being that I rent that option is not available to me. I will start to work on a water cooling enclosure for the spindle, which I will like to place on the rack under the cutting table. I will be using some 20 series 80/20 that I had bought by mistake and now I will finally be able to use it for some thing. Most other people usually place radiator and pump on or next to the spindle. I don't want the added weight on the gantry plus I don't really like the way it looks on there. I have a rough idea on the way I want the box for the cooling enclosure to look. Now that I have everything needed to run the machine, I will like to start working on it more often and posting progress on here. I'm so excited that I have got this far already:banana:. Once I finally finish my machine all I will need will be to get an electrician, to figure out how to get power to the machine without having to hard wire to electrical panel. Until then I will be working on other parts in the mean time. If anyone have any questions or comments I will like to hear from you.

  8. #48
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    Nov 2010
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    Re: How is it so far?

    I've never dealt with vfd's or spindles, but I would bet you could put a plug on the end and just plug it into an appropriate receptacle. I mean how would the vfd know that it was just plugged in vs hard wired? I'm guessing that the vtd needs 230v single phase and probably a 20 amp circuit. It would be a pretty easy job to wire, assuming the span between where you want the plug and the electrical service doesn't have any barriers.
    Good luck.

  9. #49
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    Apr 2004
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    417

    Re: How is it so far?

    Yep, a plug works fine, been there done that.

    Sent from my ASUS_Z00TD using Tapatalk

  10. #50
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    Jun 2014
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerseydog View Post
    It's been a long time since my last update. Well I was able to finally get a water cooled spindle for my machine. I thought that the spindle will be plug and play but I was mistaken. It has to be hard wired so being that I rent that option is not available to me. I will start to work on a water cooling enclosure for the spindle, which I will like to place on the rack under the cutting table. I will be using some 20 series 80/20 that I had bought by mistake and now I will finally be able to use it for some thing. Most other people usually place radiator and pump on or next to the spindle. I don't want the added weight on the gantry plus I don't really like the way it looks on there. I have a rough idea on the way I want the box for the cooling enclosure to look. Now that I have everything needed to run the machine, I will like to start working on it more often and posting progress on here. I'm so excited that I have got this far already:banana:. Once I finally finish my machine all I will need will be to get an electrician, to figure out how to get power to the machine without having to hard wire to electrical panel. Until then I will be working on other parts in the mean time. If anyone have any questions or comments I will like to hear from you.
    Fridges work great, just drill some holes for your pipes and a wire for pump, put a watertight container in it with pump in it and bingo you have 40-100w of cooling and cool water at spindle without fail. Stick your sandwiches in it too!

  11. #51
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    Dec 2012
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    Re: How is it so far?

    Yeah its not to hard to get a wire with a plug to a receptacle. I really don't want to get an electrician to make the wiring for me until I have finished everything else. I started working on a cooling box for the spindle but ran into a problem. I couldn't figure out how to support the radiator in between fans. So went on google and was able to find mounting brackets to attach to box. The brackets are on the way and some angle brackets i bought to finish box. Here are some photos of my progress on the cooling box so far. Just remember is work in progress and I make up things as I go. I'm still thinking of changing pump with a smaller profile one. Will post more as progress continue. Tell me what you think?

  12. #52
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    Dec 2012
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    Re: How is it so far?

    Well I was able to get a pair of brackets for the radiator. So today I decided to fit everything together to see how it looks. I keep changing everything as I go, so now I have decided to get another piece of extrusion. Here are 2 pics on how it looks all together with the brackets. This is not the final look but will be pretty close. All opinions are greatly appreciated.

  13. #53
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    Dec 2012
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    Re: How is it so far?

    Well I was placing a hold down table on my machine but the clearance from the bearings didn't clear. So I went a head an order a new y axis a 1545 Which should give me another 1.5 inches higher. The old one is a 1530 and it's to low. So now I have to take the machine apart and install the new y axis.

    Sent from my SM-N900T using Tapatalk

  14. #54
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    Jan 2008
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    Re: How is it so far?

    That sounds like fun.
    Wood neophyte.

  15. #55
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    Dec 2012
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    Re: How is it so far?

    Hey arbo it's tons of fun expecially when a couple of the screws stripped and I had to drill them out. I bought extraction bits to remove the stripped screws but those didn't work because they stripped also lol😂

    Sent from my SM-N900T using Tapatalk

  16. #56
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    Re: How is it so far?

    Sadly, I know that feeling.
    Wood neophyte.

  17. #57
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    Dec 2012
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    Re: How is it so far?

    Well I think I hold the record for the longest build in history. I was able to finally raise the X axis to keep the rails from hitting the table. I also added a bed to be able to clamp down material. After installing everything back I ran into a little problem. I was able to square the gantry at the back having both raisers touch the bumpers together. I wanted to see how it is when I move the gantry to the front bumpers. The left side is off by 3mm when the right side touches the right side. I have included pictures to illustrate my problem. Where did I go wrong? What can I do to fix this problem? It’s strange because with the gantry all the way to the back both sides touch the bumpers evenly but as I move the gantry to the front bumpers their off by 3mm. All help is greatly appreciated.

  18. #58
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    Jan 2008
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    Re: How is it so far?

    Hmm... is it possible the rail is just slightly longer on one side? I am sure there are wiz bang technical things people will say to square it all... but does it move smoothly? Does it do lines that are straight and parallel to each other at both ends of the table? (meaning if you cut a line across at one end, then the other, are they the same distance on the left and right)
    Wood neophyte.

  19. #59
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    Dec 2012
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    Re: How is it so far?

    Well I did take measurements and everything is all the same. Both rails are the same length. The gantry is moving smoothly. I haven't even got to the cutting stage yet 😢.

    Sent from my SM-N900T using Tapatalk

  20. #60
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    Jan 2008
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    Re: How is it so far?

    rack and pinion on both sides? do you have a y going across you could hook a pen to or something to 'draw' a line?
    Wood neophyte.

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