No thoughts ?
Mikini Mechatronics, LLC
We've received some great feedback on products, and want to thank forum contributors for their time given to participate and passion regarding our products.
In support of our comments, and further to our customer focus and open source development, we felt a new thread would be helpful, dedicated to discussion of a proposed version of our 1610 series Machining centers targeted at first time buyers and low capital investment projects, which would broaden the line to 3 stock configuration machines at 3 price points for 2013 (1610S ,L, LP).
We've been using the code name "1610 S" internally for over a year, though this may change, and product would not be available until we were fully certain of achieved performance and reliability - likely into 2013.
What we've been looking at in broad terms is as follows, and welcome all input regarding additions, subtractions, needs and wishes :
1610 "S" (again, this designation may change) series machining center - entry level / configure your own machining center
- Substantially lower price than the current -L
- Same overall package dimensions - fully enclosed - IP54 environmental conditions
- Fully assembled and ready to install. G3000 floor standing cast machine.
- "Standard precision & Resolution" - ~ 1 thou systemic accuracy/precision/resolution (not "high precision" tenths) - lower grade versions of ball screws and bearings, drives, etc. - but perhaps 2-3 times the performance of a bench-top solution of half the weight/stiffness/non bearing based.
- ~ 2000-2500 hour minimum intended bearing life (not 5000)
- No standard -L included "accessories" (Lighting, coolant, trays, limited trim, no pendant standard). Perhaps options and suggestions to build or buy your own, either from us, or other market sources to meet customer needs.
- CNC only control - No manual DRO screen or feed rate calculation
- Standard (actual) 1 HP open loop spindle drive requiring ratio changes, comparable to those marketed as 2 or 3 HP drives on common smaller machines in the industry - may up the power depending on bearing capabilities vs life as tests prove out actual values.
- Standard spindle - R8 / 5000 RPM max (torque curve - non linear)
- Retains machine microprocessor based highest level safety system with optional inputs for firmware/hardware based "soft limits" of customer's configuration.
- 4 axis only (no 5 axis option, more limited Aux inputs/outputs).
- No aux controls as standard (vs 2)
- Servo axial drives (spindle & axial - though lower power than -L) options & High speed 1.5 HP - 17,000 RPM spindle, for upgrade in future or time of purchase
- Available as a base platform to fully configure to customer specified systems.
- May have an "end of bearing life" "-L/S" drive & bearing upgrade kit available, similar to the "-L/P" kit in progress.
Interesting ? Mildly ? Wildly ?
Additions / improvements ? - standard or options ?
Subtractions ? of standard options proposed
Demand ? Want one now & would wait till 2013 ? Never consider it ?
Again, we thank all for their input. Please note that all specifications, features and configurations, as well as eventual availability are not committed to yet.
Mikini Mechatronics, llc
No thoughts ?
Mikini Mechatronics, LLC
Please don't take this in a wrong way. but, have you thought about a bare bones machine. No electronics, spindle motor, steppers, etc.
Never been asked before, but we gladly will consider it.
Machine frame only for installation of a Nema 34 axial drive system and Nema 48 spindle drive.
Basically an as-is frame for a customer's specific application, without any drives or electronics installed. We do custom drive installs and custom machines, so no issue we can see with this.
We obviously wouldn't be able to warranty or guarantee the end result in any way, but we're happy to offer it if there's consistent demand, essentially as a component.
Any other interest ?
Mikini Mechatronics, LLC
Personally, your current offering has standard stuff above the spec of the competition. I'd keep the current, do a level to match, then one below. The one that matches, don't downgrade the bearings & spindles etc, just the accessories.. Only downgrade performance on the cheapest one... look to your successful competitors for ideas I like your machine, but too much $ for all the bells and whistles for my pocket book... I want all the performance I can get (really prefer servo), so I'd like one without the stand/enclosure, but wouldn't want the specs downgraded (and assuming the spindle issues are all sorted out)..... I'd also offer lots of accessories on your site so people can do one stop shopping....
What are the application specifics for your need of a CNC machine ?
Precision requirements ? Material removal rate requirements ? Ideal/realistic Budget ?
Is there something (or many things ?) lacking from an available bench-top open CNC available today that is the "key" to your machine purchase ?
Servo drives (assume axial) for unattended operation or higher feed rate thrusts ?
Spindle speed & power requirements ? Servo required (surface finish and accuracy) or open loop spindle okay ?
We may not build the machine you need/want , but we're happy to point you to someone who perhaps does, if it exists.
Thanks again for the feedback.
Mikini Mechatronics, LLC
I've grown interested in this machine, but I also think I'd like a bit of a bare-bones machine. I use emc2 control, and have no use for the manual features. So I'm thinking that I want *no* control electronics, and a bare control panel (I'll create/insert my own buttons/etc).
It's okay to include servos/steppers (or just the NEMA mounts) ...but I will provide my own drive electronics.
As for the spindle...DO you offer a servo spindle? What are the specs? I would like as much high-end rpm as possible as well as positioning and rigid tapping.
If not, the BLDC motor should be okay - again, I'll supply my own drive. I could do well with 2HP+, and all the RPMS I can get(5000, min) w/decent low-end torque.
Items such as the oilers and flood coolant would be too much for me to do on my own. Basically, I just want all of the mechanical stuff ready to get wired-up and turned on!
Last edited by Spinnetti; 01-15-2012 at 11:25 AM.
Great feedback, and an accurate analysis of previous posts.
We don't offer a standard configuration machine at a lower price point for the very reasons detailed below (what standard would we offer ? - the reason for this thread).
We do offer custom configurations of machines for this very reason.
Great detail of the application, and very interesting looking parts.
In your general application, feed rates, travel give or take a few inches, and material removal rates aside as you very correctly mention are likely not relevant, and we advise a machine purchase selection should be done on the features, surface finishes and absolute precision required as a minimum, balanced against budget.
Generally speaking, If you're willing to run an open frame machine, without a microprocessor based safety system, don't need manual control, are willing to assemble and setup your machine, don't need tenths accurate parts, and understand and accept surface finishes from smaller manual machines, a bench-top CNC will suit your needs, and depending on the configuration and vendor, might be almost half of the total cost of our -L in a stripped format. If that suits your need and budget best, there are a couple of great vendors of bench-tops, and we would encourage you to buy one from them.
Why would you buy "more" machine ? Features, cycle time, and part requirements.
You won't be able to circular interpolate thermal or create press fits in most cases on most bench-top machines. You'll have some tooling marks consistent with the size of the machine, and generally speaking you'll have some setup and tramming to maintain accuracy and balance precision/accuracy and speed, part to part.
Generally speaking, you'll work at precision and accuracy part to part, setup to setup on a bench-top, just as you do on a manual machine, where a machining center will build the same parts without this "work" and "configuration" (due to higher stiffness, bearings, servo/high speed drives, etc). Additionally, If you need coolant for your desired tooling feeds/speeds, prepare for a mess on any open machine (it can be dealt with, but it's a mess).
And, although less or not relevant to this particular application, the same parts will be built faster on our machining centers. This should also be evaluated understanding bench-tops generally have to go slow to get the lower accuracy they achieve with a "tight" or "stiff" setup for the axis, a machining center achieves higher accuracy, and generally at any speed - through the use of high stiffness and axial configuration.
We build fully assembled, featured, floor standing machining centers, and custom variants of them. Our 1610L offers many more standard features, and substantially more precision and accuracy than a bench-top machine, as customer parts and testimonials over the years speak to. Both of our machines are also rated to 5000 hours, tested to 10,000, and built and intended for commercial use. If you're looking at a large, fully configured bench-top machine, and the other metrics of speed, precision, repeat-ability, chip-load accuracy, etc, make a difference, we're more than competitive and it's worth strongly considering upgrading to our -L machine for a very marginal increase in investment. When you're ready to cut the part cycle time of the -L by more than half, take a look at our -LP. When you need more than that, there are a couple good go-to machining centers in the $45-60k / 3500-4000 lb range.
Feature wise, here's a comparison.
Put simply, you can build parts on our machines that are nearly identical to those from a larger machining center, just slower, and take your pick of how much slower in 2 versions of the 1610. These machines make parts that you would generally not be able to make on a bench-top.
The general guidelines we give to prospective customers are :
If you only need a benchtop, can only afford a bench-top, buy a benchtop. When you need more, give us a call.
If you need a benchtop, but want room to grow into a machining center, and can afford it, we're here.
If you need a larger machining center, can't afford it (or perhaps house/support it), and can make parts slower, we're here.
If you want to learn how to operate a machining center, and want something inexpensive and generally difficult to break if you make an "oopsie", we're here.
If you need a larger machining center, can't afford it, and can't make parts slower, hire the parts out until you can afford the machine you need - shouldn't be long if you can't make parts slower
Hope this helps, feel free to call and chat. Happy to help even if you're not buying one of our machines.
Mikini Mechatronics, LLC
A bare bones machine would be very intriguing, depending on price. I'd love to see one on a basic stand without the enclosure. This would be an awesome machine to build just the way you want.