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IndustryArena Forum > GENERAL MANUFACTURING PROCESSES > MILLING > Looking for a desktop CNC milling machine for brass, copper, and aluminum
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  1. #1
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    Looking for a desktop CNC milling machine for brass, copper, and aluminum

    Hi all,
    I'm interested in getting an entry-level CNC milling machine to use on brass, copper, and aluminum. Ideally it would be a machine that I could purchase on Amazon, but I don't know if they have good options. I would be using it while learning Fusion 360 CAM.
    Thanks!

  2. #2

    Re: Looking for a desktop CNC milling machine for brass, copper, and aluminum

    What's your budget? Nothing on Amazon is going to be be very good for any type of metals, wood and plastics sure.

  3. #3
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    Re: Looking for a desktop CNC milling machine for brass, copper, and aluminum

    The Tormach 440 is probably the biggest machine that fits that description, but it's $7000. It'd hold its value well, though, and you'll be able to keep your tooling if you go up to a 770M or 1100M.
    https://tormach.com/machines/mills/pcnc-440.html

    Tormach has the xsTECH router that they say can cut aluminum. It's $3000. I don't know much about it, it's new. This would probably be the best "I want to learn CAM and run on a real machine tool controller" scenario as far as cost/benefit goes.
    https://tormach.com/machines/routers/xstech-router.html

    Haas has what they call a "desktop mill". It's $7000 and is otherwise Haas' answer to the same question Tormach answered with the xsTECH router. It is a Haas controller, so even more of an industrial controller than PathPilot.
    https://www.haascnc.com/machines/ver...ktop-mill.html

  4. #4
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    Re: Looking for a desktop CNC milling machine for brass, copper, and aluminum

    Taig mills are well capable of working with those materials and are a lot cheaper than a tormach.

    https://taigtools.com/product-catego...c-micro-mills/

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by CS900 View Post
    Taig mills are well capable of working with those materials and are a lot cheaper than a tormach.

    https://taigtools.com/product-catego...c-micro-mills/

    The Tormach xsTECH router is in the same price range as the Taig machines and at a quick glance looks to have similar specs.

  6. #6
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    Re: Looking for a desktop CNC milling machine for brass, copper, and aluminum

    Quote Originally Posted by burdickjp View Post
    The Tormach xsTECH router is in the same price range as the Taig machines and at a quick glance looks to have similar specs.
    I looked at the Tormach router when if first came out. A little digging and you'll find that a) it's belt driven and b) only has 2.4" of z travel c) has an ER11 collet spindle compared to the ER16 on the taig. For my personal needs those would be deal breakers, but I can't argue that the tormach software (pathpilot) is better than mach3 which comes with the taig.

    I should also note I am a little biased, my first mill was a taig 2019CNC, and it was a little monster of a machine for it's size. MUUUCH more rigid than a sherline.

  7. #7
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    Re: Looking for a desktop CNC milling machine for brass, copper, and aluminum

    Do you know the size of the parts you want to make?
    Do you have an idea if they are made from mostly flat raw material or do they have features and holes on all faces?
    what type of accuracy do you need?
    what is your machining experience?

  8. #8
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    Re: Looking for a desktop CNC milling machine for brass, copper, and aluminum

    Haas has what they call a "desktop mill". It's $7000
    Most of the cost is in the control by the looks of it.
    Anyone who says "It only goes together one way" has no imagination.

  9. #9
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    Re: Looking for a desktop CNC milling machine for brass, copper, and aluminum

    I took a look at the xsTech on youtube, cutting metal on that router would be pushing the envelope. It seems targeted to the educational market.
    Sieg had a small cnc mill a while back but recently I've only spotted it on Aliexpress.
    Anyone who says "It only goes together one way" has no imagination.

  10. #10
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    Re: Looking for a desktop CNC milling machine for brass, copper, and aluminum

    for the money, if youre considering the xsTech and the price, might as well look into an OMIO X6 and provide your own PC with mach3/4. just dont get the orange -EPL versions with a cheap all in one controller.

    https://www.omiocnc.com/x6-2200l-usb...-engraver.html
    its marketed as an engraver, but it definitely can handle aluminum.

    on the positive for the xsTech is i have a favorable opinion of Tormach after working with a 770. I like the pathpilot software.

    the issue is work holding. the xstech doesnt seem like it has enough travel for even a tool vise. as this video points out https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ef8vJg88mo

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