Progress over the weekend was not great.
I spent what little time I had farting with the table saw trying to get accurate, square cuts in the aluminium profiles. I have come to the conclusion that this is not a precision machine. Fortunately my design doesn't call for anything too accurate, apart from the 2 cross pieces for the gantry. On top of this, wifey found lots of aluminium chips in the sack of potatoes in the garage
The 'L' profiles are actually cut offs from some hefty profile shaped a bit like |_|'''|_|
It was a bit of a buttock clenching experience feeding 4ft x 10in lengths of the half inch thick profile lengthwise down my aforementioned wobbly table saw. Yay Ear Defenders!!!
Another frustrating experience was trying to cut off blocks from a 1" by 0.5" steel bar using a cheap gadget that clamps an angle grinder to make a sort of poor man's chop saw. It works dandy on 2mm box section but took several minutes to hack, burn and wobble it's way through the solid bar.
I've since cut all the blocks using a hand hack saw which went surprisingly well in a hand crampingly sort of a way. Yay Hacksaws!!!
Attached is a picture of some of my raw ingredients.
The grey bits bottom left are the bushings for the Y slides. They are going to be a pain to mount as the bit with the mounting holes is not really flat and the only flat sides don't have enough metal to tap holes into. Learning to make accurate bushings, pillow blocks etc is definitely a priority after phase 1.
Also shown is a stepper I'm going to use initially and a servo I'd like to use eventually. The stepper is connected to PIC16F84 + L298N boards I designed a few years back. (look at the purdy spinning motor go round and round and round and...)
I like the look of the PICStep boards that Alan (Garfield2) has created and I'm hoping that if I keep telling him what an extremely clever, generous and ruggedly handsome individual he is, he may let me try his PIC Servo design