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IndustryArena Forum > Hobby Projects > Gunsmithing > CNC for rifle stock recommendations
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  1. #1
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    CNC for rifle stock recommendations

    Retiring from the Corps in a few years & I'm set on creating carbon fiber stocks.

    I'm interested in a tooling list that includes:
    1. CNC machine model to make aluminum molds.
    2. Best (or ideal) CAD software to use for design.
    3. Aluminum block type and sources to purchase from.
    4. Carbon fiber mold tooling list. Possible suppliers.
    5. Other items such as furnace etc.

    Accurate lightweight mountain rifles is my goal.


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  2. #2
    Community Moderator ger21's Avatar
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    Re: CNC for rifle stock recommendations

    The only person that could accurately answer all of your questions, would be someone that is doing exactly what you want to do. If you find that person, chances are they aren't going to tell you how they do it.

    1) Any high quality CNC Router can make your molds, but it won't be the fastest. A good mill would be better, but the cost would likely be higher.
    2) the best CAD software is the one you like best. You might want to start with Fusion 360, which is free.
    Gerry

    UCCNC 2017 Screenset
    http://www.thecncwoodworker.com/2017.html

    Mach3 2010 Screenset
    http://www.thecncwoodworker.com/2010.html

    JointCAM - CNC Dovetails & Box Joints
    http://www.g-forcecnc.com/jointcam.html

    (Note: The opinions expressed in this post are my own and are not necessarily those of CNCzone and its management)

  3. #3
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    Re: CNC for rifle stock recommendations

    @ger21 Thanks for the reply. I understand but I figured I'd give it a shot and ask anyway. Maybe I can piece together the information from different forums. =)

    What would be a "high quality" CNC router which you refer to? I'm not worried about speed, just being able to complete up to 10-20 molds with no problems.

    Bed length would be a concern and would want to make sure it can cut inside a 20" block of aluminum.

  4. #4
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    CNC for rifle stock recommendations

    What did you do in the corps?

    As far as the machine I think you'd be best off with something like a fadal 4020 that I see cheap used or something like that. I think mild making is a lot of 3D profiling and a sturdy machine is going to help you in making some decent finishes. You can look for used vmcs and find good deals on Craigslist and such.

    Good luck in your retirement and I'm just waiting to get out as I write this as I'm on post on Halloween.

    Maybe you'll be big one day I just purchased a manners stock and maybe one day I'll buy one of yours.

  5. #5
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    Re: CNC for rifle stock recommendations

    Thanks for the input. The Fadal 4020 seems to be the general consensus.

    I started enlisted as an 01 (not by choice), commissioned after E-6, now an 02 with 03 background.

  6. #6
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    Re: CNC for rifle stock recommendations

    I've built many master molds for carbon layup through the years. We had an Aerospace Engineer on staff who would do the design work for us.
    In our application we would build a master mold from Ren Board urathane tooling board. The actual tooling mold would be pulled from this master to protect the investment.
    I highly recommend finding a company local to you that works with carbon fiber products. Preferably aerospace based. Call the GM and share your background and goals and I am certain he will arrange to have someone walk you through the rough steps. You might just find a sympthethic engineer there who loves guns and would like to help you through the design phase.
    I also recommend subcontracting the mold making. It sounds like your business model is to make gun stocks. I would never recommend tackling a new skill set that will detract from your actual goal.

    Much luck....
    And thank you for your service to our country.

    Rob

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G900A using Tapatalk

  7. #7
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    Re: CNC for rifle stock recommendations

    Quote Originally Posted by tinmancarving View Post
    I've built many master molds for carbon layup through the years. We had an Aerospace Engineer on staff who would do the design work for us.
    In our application we would build a master mold from Ren Board urathane tooling board. The actual tooling mold would be pulled from this master to protect the investment.
    I highly recommend finding a company local to you that works with carbon fiber products. Preferably aerospace based. Call the GM and share your background and goals and I am certain he will arrange to have someone walk you through the rough steps. You might just find a sympthethic engineer there who loves guns and would like to help you through the design phase.
    I also recommend subcontracting the mold making. It sounds like your business model is to make gun stocks. I would never recommend tackling a new skill set that will detract from your actual goal.

    Much luck....
    And thank you for your service to our country.

    Rob

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G900A using Tapatalk
    Tinmancarving, thank you and thanks for the advice. I'll look around once I return to the states.

    My primary goal is to build the lightest and most accurate mountain rifle.

    I anticipate there will be some trial and error. I'd like to eat the cost of setup up front as I think it'll repay for itself in the long run. Plus I won't have to worry about overhead in renting a shop, which in SoCal can be expensive.

    Once I have perfected the art and finalized a build, I'd give it a name then put it out on the market... If I even want to do that. Right now it'd just be a hobby doing something I love.

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