Sounds similar to a table I just built. Please keep us posted!
im starting a new system build and wanted to post info about my build and get help with what ever speed bumps i encounter along the way, if this is not the proper forum to post about my system in please point me in the correct direction.
- Dragon-Cut 620-5
---DRAGON CUT w/Rotary Wizard and TubeSlicer
---DTHC II Module
- Hiwin track
- not yet decided
-3x3 steel 3/16 wall
- autocad 2011
- sheet cam TNG
- ink scape
as i start building the system ill ad more info. at this time i have steel, electronics, linear motion already to go.
now to read all the manuals -
Last edited by tig-racer; 04-20-2011 at 08:58 PM.
I got gear racks from Moore Gear, 20 deg. pressure angle and pinions from McMaster (sold me Boston Gear). The motors, if you've not noticed already, have 3/8" shafts, not 1/4" which a lot of NEMA 23 motors seem to have...which bit me in the butt since I ordered pulleys for 1/4" shafts prior to getting the CandCNC kit and finding I needed 3/8" bore on the pulleys...had to drill mine out.
I think you'll be happy with the CandCNC stuff, I think it works very well and the screens customized for Mach3 are good, I think.
Tips (must haves): floating torch head (I didn't know how important that was and didn't have it originally), right post processor selected in SheetCAM for the floating torch head (MP3000-THC-Zref, which I had to manually copy from one of the CD's to the posts directory for SheetCAM). And most importantly, hook up an E stop button...I put mine on a cord so I can have it in my hand when the table is running...no diving for a button on the table or trying to click a button on screen when the #$#$ hits the fan. A water table is highly recommended...that helps a bunch on dust/debris/smoke.
thanks for the tips. i was a bit shocked to see how much larger the shaft on these stepper motors were than my previous system.
HC B what type of "E" switch did you use? i need to get some limit switches and a "E" switch on order.
most likely i will get my track/gear from McMaster as im able to pick my order up making it easy to get larger than average parts easily.
im not sure yet if i want to run a pulley system on my stepper motors or some kind of gear reduction system. i like the PLANETARY GEARBOX setups i have seen but they are a bit costly.
this is going to be my 2nd CNC plasma system. my last CNC system used another brand controller and worked great but was limited by the manufacture a bit. i have sold my previous system and i look forward to having a more end user friendly controller on this new system.
i plan to have the new table be roughly 8'-6" wide by 12'-6" long with 9-12" of Z-axis below the gantry.
ill also be running a water table probably 3-4" deep.
i plan to run 2" slats supported at each end and down the center of the table.
im looking forward to having an automated torch height controller. not sure yet what ill build for the "floating head" but i have a few ideas rolling around.
i hope once the system is up and running to get an router attached to the gantry and a pneumatic scribe. i have yet to figure out if the sheet cam software can handle properly making g-code for offset tools.
im currently working on picking out an rotary of some kind for the 5th axis motor to control.
this system will be used to do mild product of specialty automotive parts and custom doors/gates for entry to homes/property. if all gos well id like to get the system to do some aluminum work but that's down the road quiet a bit.
i see the sheet cam and mach3 as my biggest hurdles to over come as i have never used either of these before. i have 15 yrs of drafting/design experience with AutoCad and hope the new software play nice with the files i create in autocad.
i hope to see how others have set up there CandCnC products.
are there many CandCnC owners on this site?
once i brake ground (fire up the grinder) on this project ill post some pics. at this time its just a shop corner full of things i try to keep others from staking car parts on.
Just as an option for your floating Z, since you mentioned it: I went with this one.
CNC Routers, Routers for Wood, Routers for Plastic and CNC Plasma Cutter
I can't say too much about it yet since my table isn't complete, but it's a pretty nice looking piece anyway. If you want more travel they offer larger ones too.
They sell it cheaper on Ebay than on their website. When I was ready to order I called and asked them about that, and they sold it to me for an even better price.
stopped by the office of K2CNC today, they were great to meet with in person and were even nice enough to give my wife and i a quick tour of their shop. i decided to go with an 6" Z-axis for my new CandCnC build. i should be picking up the new Z-axis in a few days.
i look forward to buying more products from K2 as time gos on with my CNC projects. id def suggest anyone looking for an product of any kind to give K2cnc a call. the K2 crew were very professional and had great things to say about the CandCnC products ill be using with the K2 Z-axis.
One thing I noticed with mine, is that I had to trim about 1/4" off the length of the motor shaft for the Z-axis. I'm using the same 620 oz. motors you are, so you'll probably need to do the same. Just so you aren't surprised like I was.
i picked up the Z-axis today and its quality is 2nd to none. the guys at K2 were great to deal with during this purchase. K2 was nice enough to fit my motor and adjust the shaft to help ensure perfect fitment.
the Z-axis is so nice im going to have to get someone to make an mounting plate of equal quality for it. i don't have the ability to do any extensive machining work with aluminum at this time, once i have an part drawn up in CAD ill have to find a shop to make it for me.
lots more parts to collect.....
I used a regular rocker style switch that stays in either of two positions (open or closed). It's designed for panel mounting through a rectangular hole but I put blade connectors on each end of a wire pair and then used some cut-short zip ties as stiffeners and taped it all up...looks like a cylinder of tape with a rocker switch at the top...the cable it's on is about three feet...right next to the table...long enough I can step away from the workstation and see what's going on with it in my hand. The switch is nothing fancy, just something I had lying around. I find it more convenient for what I'm doing to just use it instead of having a sprinkling of switches around the table. Whatever you do, make sure some easy-to-operate-by-touch cutoff is at hand when you first start cutting...unless you're way more lucky than I am, you'll need it a few times before you get things right. YYMV.
The pulley/belts I have, once the belt is tight, do not seem to have any appreciable backlash and are cheap compared to gear boxes I've seen.
Tom at CandCNC.com has been great, responded quickly and expertly to the few problems I've had. *NOT ONE* problem I've had was because of CandCNC or their products...*all* my problems have turned out to be mistakes soley of my own creation or shortcomings.
I like the 12' 6" because you can, I seem to recall, buy sheet metal 12' long...but why the 8' + The largest sheet metal (or plate, depending on what you like to call it) I can get and have seen is 6'. If the Y axis runs the short length and the X axis runs the long length (which is how mine is setup), going to 8+ feet instead of, say, 6', will add weight to your gantry and give more chance for tail-whip, IMHO.
And not trying to give you static at all...just asking...why the long Z travel?
Water's good...I think I said this in my last post...but if I didn't, buy the right stuff...sodium nitrite (used for curing meats, I found stuff for curing salmon eggs that claims it's 99% pure) and get the physan 20...I found mine online at some head shop selling 'ponics stuff. :-/
My 2" slats are supported at the edges and with 2 runs down the middle equally spaced. They are offset so that the 2" metal is curved like an S for rigidity...a really good idea because I beat the bottom of the tank down in two locations for draining so the slats are about 1/2" from the bottom of the tank.
I got some linear slide stuff from McMaster...darned expensive...about 80 bucks for a 12" guide and one slide block...but it works. I would love to know what you come up with as the setup I have has some play in it...but it's way better than no floating torch...saves me a TON of time and aggravation.
I'd also like to know how you make out with offset tooling...I set my Z carriage up for two tools...plasma/oxy-acetylene and a plate marker...just haven't put in the plate marker yet.
Don't cut aluminum over water...if you believe what I've heard, it makes an explosion hazard (maybe producing hydrogen gas?). I dunno if it's true, but I'd definitely get some expert answers on that just in case.
I've tried to use AutoCAD a few times and get P*#$#D off everytime I try to draw a rectangle and drag a corner to make it bigger and I get a polygon that's not square...arrgghhh....but I got SheetCAM and Mach3 with no troubles...so...if you can do AC you should have no troubles with those two. Cake.
I'm back to work now...first cuts on the table in almost 2 weeks...need more parts. I'll be back around to check in and read the later posts.
Good luck. Hope this helps.