I'm still in the design phase of my first build, but wanted to post my design progress before I even start fab and assembly. Maybe you guys can catch any mistakes before they get beyond the 3d model stage.
It will be a fairly small benchtop unit just because of the amount of space I have available in my little garage. A smaller unit should also help with the cost side of things I hope.
All I have designed so far is the Z-axis. As designed it would have 3 inches of travel. I'm using a THK HRW35 rail that I got from a co-worker. At the time of writing this it is the only physical part I have. I plan on making the structure from aluminum. I work for a company that builds custom automated machinery, so I have a lot of raw materials available at pretty good prices. I will probably use 80/20 as well, though I haven't decided how much. I'm going to get a decent estimate of the cost per pound of aluminum I get from work, then try to compare that to an 80/20-centered design.
Z Axis Assembly Drawing (PDF)
Last edited by avidesk; 07-17-2011 at 10:43 PM.