This is my first post so appologies if it is in the wrong area.
I have been looking around for a while trying to get hold of a cnc router capable of cutting materials a minimum of A4 size and would be such materials as 500 micron to 2 mm plastics. I only have a small budget and looking to get one as cheap as possible.
I have seen some DIY frames for around £295 which require 3 steppers, drivers, router, cuplers and power supply for completion but knowing my luck I will only end up blowing the thing up (or myself).
I am therefore wondering if anyone in the UK has one for sale or if someone could build one for me on a budget and if so how much.
I would of really like to have had a go myself hence the reason I registered with this website but this sort of project really looks like too much of a job for me.
Many thanks for taking the time to read this post.
Well so far I have only £640 which i know is lo at the moment which is why I was looking at the frame kit available for £295 plus £17 p&p.
The information of the diy machine is as follows, I have coloured the text green to seperate my comments from that of the guy selling the frame:
Specs: Cutting area 610mm x 350mm. Z travel 110mm Max clearance for material 50mm Lead screws are trapezoidal 10mm diameter x 4mm pitch, 2 start (more efficient than standard screws) on the X and Y axis and 10mm diameter x 2mm pitch single start on the Z axis. Uses Delrin nuts which can be adjusted for zero backlash. Limit and Home switches provided. Main component part are made from high quality multi ply and are ready to paint. Uses bearings on all axes. Recommended stepper motors of 100 oz in to 250 oz in (this will depend on what you intend to cut). Will connects to your computers printer port. The bed could be easily converted to a vacuum clamp bed.
What you will need to complete the frame.
No 6 x 12mm counter sunk screws x 24 of No 6 x 16mm counter sunk screws x 16 of No 6 x 19mm counter sunk screws x 14 of No 8 x 50mm counter sunk screws x 12 of No 8 x 16mm counter sunk screws x 46 of 8 of machine screws 5mm x 0.8 x length to suit packers for mounting X and Y stepper motors.
Other parts you will need for a competed machine ready to run. Three couplers for connection of stepper motors to screw shaft. Three stepper motors (some good bargains to be had on ebay). Cable to wire stepper motors to drives, wire limit and home switches and connect drivers to your PC. Drivers for stepper motors (again some good bargains to be had on ebay). A power supply.
An enclosure for the electronics. A switch and fuse holder. Software to run your cnc router.
So I was confused as to what stepper motors are needed, what power supply, how I go about linking it all together.
Thus the reason I was wondering if anyone on this board in the UK has made a cheapish one ready to use that they are willing to part with or if I was to buy this frame, how much do you reccon roughly it would cost me in parts to complete this machine. The machine is going to be used to cut plastics from 500 micron to 2mm in thickness and maybe used to do a bit of light engraving on thin steels (maybe)
I am not too good with electronics which is the reason I would rather buy someones working project or if someone could build one for me for within my budget (which I know is quite low) that would be great also.
Thank you for the information, I really appreciate it.
I have taken the nerve racking jump and bought the DIY frame kit so I will just need to get a hold of the finishing components to complete it.
I looked at the items you posted, many thanks. Looks like I will be getting them.
Just one question with regards to the linear power supply. I always thought they were powered from modified pc power supplies lol so sorry for my ignorance. I have been searching the net for these supplies and keep stumbling accross open framed linear power supplies, are these the power supplies you are talking about or am I looking in the wrong areas as some of them are a bit steep in price.
Not a lot of time to give much more info yet; just one thing please donít buy anything yet. Give all the information you can were the cnc kit is concerned and also your requirements as in what you will be cutting.
Ahh, I have already purchased the frame kit but none of the components yet.
The specs of the frame are in one of the previous posts (in green text).
The machine should look like below when complete (i hope):
The kit I purchased contains the following (copied from the sellers email):
All parts needed that need to be especially cut or drilled (plywood parts ready for your chosen paint finish) Trapezoidal shaft for 3 axes, machined and ready for assembly. Delrin nuts which will allow adjustment for anti backlash. Switches for limit and home positioning. Z axis fully assembled (because of its complex nature). All bearings needed.
I intend to use it to cut polycarbonate between 500 micron in size to 2mm and sheet sizes of A4.
The 500 micron sheet may be stacked in piles of 10 or more to cut 10 sheets at once. I have used a cnc router before and realise that cutting multiple sheets does require a perspex jig placed on top of the substrates and possibly bolted down to stop movement. I also may require to use it / modify it to use for some light engraving on stainless steel or plastics.
I am sure if you were in the US many here would suggest the hobbycnc kit or the like.
I am in the UK and have sourced a lot of parts. If you give me a little time I will put a list together (UK sources) and post them here. Obviously if others would like to chime in all the better as we all could do with more UK sources for these types of machines and god know there arenít many here.
I am hoping to use it for small business use. There will be no heavy usage of the machine to be honest, it may be switched on 1 day for about half hour then off for the rest of the day.
The reason I had a budget for this machine is I have never had a business loan or any other sort of loan, I try to do everything without going down that road.
I have been trying to run my business for about a year and have been hand cutting 500 micron polycarbonate but the finish result never looks professional enough to take things further and have only been selling my products through that well known auction site.
I have the oppertunity to put some of my items in stores so I thought I would try the cnc method. The money I use is what I get back out of my products (after the cost of rent and materials and not much of a wage) Also, I would like to progress further by upgrading the plastics I use to 1mm or 2mm and there is no way I can cut them without mechanical assistance. So fingers crossed, if all works well, I can progress things much further.
I really do appreciate your help and you are correct about suppliers in the uk for these sort of things. They are all over the US when you do a search but nothing much over here.
Hi I recently bought one of the drivers from "Motion control" on ebay. I can highly recommend their drivers. I got one to replace my Z axis driver which exploded in flames.
The motors mentioned earlier in this thread should be okay, and the price is good.
For a power supply I would build you own, it's really not that hard, and you can build to what you need rather than make do with something that's not quite right.
Something like this one from RS ought to do:
Toroidal transformer,225VA 2x18V o/p. RS Stock no. 223-8162
Although double check the voltage output you require. Even though the above transformer says 2*18V outputs, giving either 18V or 36V, once you've rectified the AC and added a capacitor the voltage will be higher than that. So you must choose carefully.
I built the power supply for my machine. See picture below.
I hope you get sorted out with all the bits you need.
Having built a machine, drivers, interface and power supply from scratch, I may be able to help out with some of your questions.
Now I've found this thread I'll be watching with interest.. :-)
I use drivers from Motion control products on all 3 axis. I had one develop a fault and returned it for a new one took 3 weeks and only came back after I emailed for an update. Having said that I would recommend their drives. The others on ebay and the one I suggested would work for a hobby machine but these will be more reliable IMHO and would have been on my list of recommended parts.
One other thing for now the picture shows more than just the PSU so donít get panicked it is all quite simple once you understand how it all works.