Looking for a quick-n-easy way to build a small CNC, I was wondering
using the rails and slide from tile cutters.
The better ones have chromed/stainless steel rails and linear ball bearings.
What say you? Just a few examples -
Why would these be any worse than, black pipe and skate bearings?
the bigges issue with them , for long spans there" unsupported rail",
add stepper "motor torque", " spindle force" and "cutting forces" excelerations ramps up and down speeds... you may find they work.... but they "will flex" ... so you must decide if you can live with that?
The linear bearing slides are generally much better than black iron pipe and skate bearings. These tile cutter shafts are supported at each end only, therefore they will flex, and the amount of flex may or may not be of concern to you depending on what you want to use them for. The linear bearings on these shafts do not allow for fully supporting the shafts to prevent the flexing issues.
Though people use unsupported shafts for many successful builds in these and other forums, it is not the best mechanical method to use. This is the only issue that I saw with these shafts.
Didn't mean to cause trouble, just wondered why no one seems to question the pipe and skate bearings.
The underside of gas/ cold rolled pipes can be supported via the skate bearing design, the bearing on most tile cutter use 360 degree linear bearing, any support under the pipe would limit the travel with this type of linear bearing. Thus your limited .... with unsupported rail system with flex.
I actually thought about the tile cutter while looking for a easy, ready-made Y-axis,
for a small CNC with a small span for PCB and other small engraving.
If you want to build a small 3 axis engraving machine with the tile cutter rails you will need two tile cutters to get enough rails. Otherwise, the tile cutter rails should work fine.
quadtech's idea of using the tile cutter rails for a Z axis sounds like a good use for them.