PDA

View Full Version : Seeking help building a machine



43220
12-04-2006, 02:19 PM
I am here because I need to build my own cnc foam cutter on a modest budget (no $5000 or up machines). Requirements are about a 3 to 4 foot long hot wire with horizontal traverse of about 4 feet and vertical movement of about 0 to 4 inches.

I have been cutting with hot wire for years but doing so manually, so I have experience using the wire. I just know very little about motion control and software so need much help in those areas. Am an experienced cabinetmaker/builder with a shop.

What would be nice would be a source for complete plans, components, and support for a machine that I can put together. Looking for suggestions.

Thanks for your help.


P.S. What is meant by a 4 axis machine?

43220
12-04-2006, 02:32 PM
I see many advertisements from many different suppliers on this site. Would be interested in any recommendations as to which are best to deal with which offer good products so I can build an easy to use (especially for a computer illiterate) machine, easy to maintain, and relatively trouble free.

43220
12-07-2006, 09:52 AM
Still waiting...

I thought people here wanted to help those looking for it?


:confused:


Financial remuneration is certainly offered!

vulcom1
12-07-2006, 12:02 PM
The question I have is are you going to build it yourself and as a cabinet maker there should be no problems. Also you can either buy the electronics or roll your own. Hobbycnc is one source for a package. There is a lot of variables needed to know before you get a reply.
If you diy for the electronic's you can check the Yahoo forum under cncfoamcutters. There is a schematic(mm2001) for making your own board. I am also gathering up parts for making my own and a little searching will get lots of ideas that you can incorporate in your design.
I have not checked out where to purchase a setup as being a hobbiest with RC aircraft I like building my own. You need 4 axis and 2 motions are on each side. Requires 4 stepper motors and if you are cutting your own you know that a lot of wings the tip and root are different sizes. I believe the axis we use are x and z for cutting.
John

43220
12-07-2006, 12:29 PM
Thanks for the response! Yes, I plan on building it myself, however, I know nothing about the electronics and programming so a package is probably in order.

I will be cutting into a slab of foam about 1-1/2" x 2' x 3' so it will weigh little - hoping I can use a simple sliding board (say 1/4" masonite*) for the foam. Since material is relatively thin, I will only need a few inches of vertical travel for the wire. Table will have to move/slide up to 3-4'.

Guess I need recommendation for construction details/tips and package components to suit these requirements. I do have experience with heat control and tensioning of wire.

Asked the guy at hobbycnc for some help, but he didn't seem anxious to provide much. :confused:

Maybe somebody here has some extra components suitable for my purposes they'd be willing to part with??

*Edit - actually since 1/4" masonite has considerable weight, perhaps a sliding table of a lighter material such as 1/4 to 3/4" foam core board would be better.

onthemarc
12-08-2006, 03:46 AM
Hi
I'm not sure where your going with the 1/4 maisonette idea.
with a four axis foam cutter normally the foam stays still and the wire moves.
the four axis are called X.Y. and U.V . so you will need software that will generate four axis g-code. Each end of the wire moves in two independent axis.
This lets you cut foam with a different size or shape at each end of the wire.
What are you cutting the foam for? Hobbycnc has 4 axis kits if you want to solder one yourself or xylotex.com or stepper3.com has 4 axis controllers already made up .
I also am a cabinet maker. I have been researching and planing my foam cutter for a year now. my plan is a lot bigger. I want to cut and rout foam blocks 4'X4'X10'

if you want to talk
marcadvancedwood@msn.com

43220
12-08-2006, 06:51 AM
I do not need the ends of the wire to move independently of each other - only in tandem and only a few inches in the vertical axis. Since my material is so lightweight, with a light weight carry board to move it with there would be no need to also move the ends of the wire in two directions (up/down & back/forth).

In other words, there is no need to add the weight of the mechanisms to move the wire ends to the carriage board for the foam.

Visualize a large table the machine is mounted on with the wire ends and mechanisms attached on either side of the table. Each end of the wire is driven in the vertical axis in tandem a few inches.* The lightweight board the lightweight foam sits on is beneath the wire and has dual motors to move it linearly beneath the wire in the second axis. This is all I need.

I hope this is clear.

* In theory, perhaps only one motor would be needed for each axis - one to move the board/foam and one to move the wire attached and tensioned on a rigid frame? But I have no problem if dual motors are needed for each (four in total).

As to suppliers, I'll be glad to buy from one that responds to my requests for help/advice(!). To quote Bill Paxton's character in Aliens, "So far, Zippo!"

NinerSevenTango
12-08-2006, 07:52 AM
It sounds like all you need is a machine to slice the foam. In that case, all you need is two motors, and you don't need computer control at all. You could use a DC motor to jog your wire up or down to the height you want, and use another DC motor to drive your table. Everything could be driven off skinny timing belts. And the table part would be simpler if you used driven rollers to run your board through, that way you could avoid having to auto reverse it. Would something like that work for you?

43220
12-08-2006, 08:09 AM
My thinking is: the less weight the motors have to move around, the better off you are (low torgue motors are less expensive?). Therefore, in my design, the motors would remain stationary in relation to the main table; only the foam would move in one axis and the wire in the other.

Also the less resistance the motors (lower torgue) encounter moving the wire is relevant also. Of course, with foam cutters, there inherently is little of this.

I believe I'm correct in this?

NinerSevenTango
12-08-2006, 08:15 AM
I believe that is correct.

Could you just load the foam on one side of the wire and then drive it through and unload it from the other side? If so, you could just use driven rollers. No NC control necessary at all, if I read you correctly.

43220
12-08-2006, 08:21 AM
It sounds like all you need is a machine to slice the foam. In that case, all you need is two motors, and you don't need computer control at all. You could use a DC motor to jog your wire up or down to the height you want, and use another DC motor to drive your table. Everything could be driven off skinny timing belts. And the table part would be simpler if you used driven rollers to run your board through, that way you could avoid having to auto reverse it. Would something like that work for you?


No, I'm not just slicing the foam. The wire must move in the vertical axis while the foam moves linearly at the same time to cut programmable patterns in the foam.

43220
12-08-2006, 04:00 PM
Here's simple sketch:

NinerSevenTango
12-08-2006, 09:37 PM
OK then, back to your original question -- I just jumped in here to try to help, but I don't know anything about foam cutting. And I don't know if there are any complete kits / plans. But a couple of things do seem clear; you are going to want 2 axis control, so I would suggest Mach 3 software, because it is inexpensive and easy enough to learn so that you can get it to do what you want. You are going to need a personal computer to run it on, you will need to feed signals from it to your drives. I suggest you check out the Gecko website, they have robust products, intelligent management, and unparalleled support. I don't know whether they can supply or suggest your stepper motors, but someone on here should be able to help. Just buy them a little bigger than you think you need and you should have no problems.

That leaves the mechanical design. If you are on a budget and are not in too much of a hurry, you could design it and build it yourself. From what I am seeing in your sketch, you could build most of the thing out of wood. I don't know how much precision you need to get out of the thing, but that will dictate the design and the cost.

Hope that was some help anyway.

--97T--

43220
12-17-2006, 05:37 PM
To date zippo progress on this :(

RCXPLANES
12-31-2006, 12:28 AM
43220,
I am new to building CNC equipment but have an Emissions Technologies laser cutter that I use all the time in two axis. I love the thing but want more options for solid shapes.
I am building a 4 axis Hotwire foam cutter for myself soon. I am likely going to use the seemingly more conventional method of holding the foam stationary and controling the wire movement because I want to have the ability to make some complex shapes that can only happen with that control. This system can still be usefull cutting foam as if there were just a sliding table but would take up less space in opperation. It would also give you the option of doing more complex opperations later if you needed to.
Using some of the same available motion parts from the laser manufacturer supplier, I think the whole motion system of 24" in Z and 24" in Y and however far appart you place these systems and stretch the wire in X axis, without electronics will be under $350.00 for some first rate stuff. So far it looks like the GPFM software, The HobbyCNC 4 axis system, recomended enclosures and power suplies are the best way to go and not that expensive reletively speaking. I will have to build my own table but that is probably the easiest part of the whole thing for me. I think it can be done and cutting with some very high quality stuff for between $1500 and $1700 max.
I am getting some good help and even some sample motion stuff to play with. I will post some conclusions as the design materializes. Good luck with your project.

Bud

Sleedo
01-01-2007, 09:43 AM
1. if you have room to have a 2x3 sliding table then a 2 axis machine should be fine. You could connect the two gantries together with a belt and use single motor for your vertical axis.

2. if you wanted to use a seperate motor for each gantry you might as well go with 4 motors and build a traditional CNC cutter. You'll find a lot more support for the common setup. here's a link to my budget machine's thread: http://www.cnczone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=18613

It has been upgraded to a HobbyCNC.com 4 axis controller (highly recommended) and bigger motors.

Feel free to shoot me any questions about the setup, it is really not too difficult. Oh, by the way, I use GMFC software and Jedicut. They are for wing cutting mainly but there some other cheap/free options available.

HNY!

RCXPLANES
01-01-2007, 10:43 PM
Sleedo,
Thanks for the link post to your machine. I love seeing what others are doing. Sometimes you start making an inexpensive machine then your plans take on a life of their own. "If I just spend a little more I can get....". The real question is how much better will the machine opperate I suppose. Probably not that much.

Bud

43220
01-02-2007, 08:43 AM
Thanks.

Instead of drawer slides (limited length of motion), I'm thinking for the sliding board to have the board sitting on a table with low friction surfacing on both the top of the table and bottom of the board - could simply be plastic (melamine/Formica laminate) surfaces greased or lightly oiled. Some simple means (guide tracks/grooves in table or board sitting between two guide rails) to make board move in straight line will also be used.

This would work wouldn't it?

Sleedo
01-02-2007, 10:06 PM
Sure, it'll work but who knows how well. As Thomas Edison said "I haven't failed, I've just discover another way that doesn't work." Give it a shot.

Sleedo
01-04-2007, 10:24 PM
Sleedo,
Thanks for the link post to your machine. I love seeing what others are doing. Sometimes you start making an inexpensive machine then your plans take on a life of their own. "If I just spend a little more I can get....". The real question is how much better will the machine opperate I suppose. Probably not that much.

Bud

You know what? After almost a year of use I can honestlty say that I don't think that if I spent more on my system I would get any better results. There is so much that is left to tuning and outside variables that it has become an art, to me, to cut good cores. For example, a couple of weeks ago I was cutting a long core, 33" section, and it got too smoky in the room even with a respirator on so I opened a door and a window between halves. The next cut that I did came out cold and sagged in the center because the breeze cooled the wire just enough to foul up the cut.

When it's working well I have produced some really nice work though, last weekend I cut a pair of cores for an 18" slope soarer called a Limit. Very high taper with a 6" root and 2.5" tip in a 9" length. The first cut was perfect and then my wire broke between cuts due to fumble fingers- I restrung the bow, fired up the heat and it broke again. Second time I restrung it it's now an hour later but I got it right and the second half of this difficult cut came out a mirror image of the 1st. I am finishing up the plane and it is a beaut, makes alll the sweat worth it in the end.

EB

RCXPLANES
01-05-2007, 11:39 PM
My Appologies

43220
01-06-2007, 06:57 AM
Sleedo, what are you using for your wire?

Sleedo
01-06-2007, 07:53 AM
RCX, that's some nice looking gear!
43220, I use Malin stainless leader, .013 dia/(125lb test I believe). works well so far, I may give the Rene wire from Skyking RC a try though.

43220
01-14-2007, 06:56 PM
Why not use NiCr (resistance) wire that requires much less current?

43220
03-19-2007, 04:33 PM
I really need help with this.

First off, I do not understand computers at all, let alone software and programming so need help with this. I read the posts on this forum about things like G codes and the like, and don't have the faintest idea what you all are talking about!

Also don't understand stepper motors, etc.

Hoping someone here will give me 100% support in developing a machine and the hardware and software for it. I will pay them for their time.

I needed this machine a year ago! It is vital for my business (FYI I am located in Michigan).

Anyone?

NinerSevenTango
03-20-2007, 07:27 AM
Where in Michigan, maybe I can help you out.

--97T--

43220
03-22-2007, 11:45 AM
About middle of the lower peninsula (Osceola Cty).

robpiaz
03-26-2007, 10:43 PM
The way you can run these types of cutters you need to have knowledge of a Cadd system because most cutting softwares need a .dxf file to import them to. And some types of software take a .dxf and convert to g-code. It's not as simple as plugging in thing into a PC. I've built a few of these and think if you stick to proven designs you should be ok.

cnccutter
04-17-2007, 09:25 PM
Hows goes the battle? I am just finishing a 60" x 60" X 25" high 4 axis machine. I live in SE mich let me know if I can Help.
Mark

43220
11-03-2007, 01:19 PM
Still no progress to date, but I've ordered some cheap ($5 each) stepper motors and a cheap ($25) controller kit to fool around with and maybe start to figure something out. Guess I'm on my own to flounder through the process. Amazing how much help you can get on line (yeah, right).

I'm sitting on what is probably a huge business opportunity, but can I get help with it? And we all wonder why there's so much un (or under) employment around?

How about I visit one of you nearby guys places to get some ideas (on WTH I'm doing!)? As I posted earlier, maybe someone has some surplus stuff laying around I could use?

cnccutter
11-03-2007, 07:00 PM
What size parts do you need to cut? With what accuracy? How much do you want to spend?

43220
11-04-2007, 09:44 AM
Mark - see page one this thread (esp. post #5) for size and general machine specs.

Accuracy? Hard to specify with foam, but for what I need to do, shouldn't be difficult (+/- .010"?).

I am PM-ing you for contact info.

harryn
11-04-2007, 11:59 PM
FWIW, if you read the thread about the "snake" in this section, he has a machine that was built up for him. Does nice work AFAIK.

Maybe contact the supplier of that system ? If you have a lot of potential foam cutting business, then you are just wasting time building it yourself. You can always build machine number 2 when your business grows and you have some more experience under your belt.

Another option of course, would be for you to find a shop / cnc hobbiest that has a foam cutter, and work with them in a sales / commission role. Shops almost always need more work.

43220
11-12-2007, 08:17 PM
just got in some surplus motors, three:

http://www.allelectronics.com/cgi-bin/item/SMT-89/400600/2-PHASE_1.8_DEGREE_STEPPER_MOTOR_(USED)_.html

these came with a mounting bracket attached which will help - hoping to use two (one on each end of wire frame) to control position of wire. Maybe third can be used to move/position foam.

What else do I need to drive/control these with a computer?

and one each:

http://www.allelectronics.com/cgi-bin/item/SMT-86/400600/STEPPER_MOTOR,_LIN_4118S_.html

http://www.allelectronics.com/cgi-bin/item/SMKIT-2/400600/STEPPER_MOTOR_CONTROLLER_KIT_.html

robpiaz
11-13-2007, 07:23 PM
I looked at the links you posted this would work for a small hobby machine. I built a machine that could cut 60" x 60" and could mount the towers at any distance way from each other. I used 276in. oz. steppers with a kit stepper controller from kitsrus.com. Specifically K158. It works well the only draw back to is that a stepper motor can't be driven very fast. I used acme screws to push the X and Y. If I were to do it again I would use timing belt or some other cable type of movement. That would help the cut speed issue and oscillation of the acme screw at higher speeds. Also depending on budget if it allows you to buy a better motor driver I would do it. With the K158 I had to put resistors inline of motor leads. Some of the pricer drivers dont need these to be install which give you better stepper performance. Hope this helps.

radcliffe
12-03-2007, 05:28 PM
43220
I suggest that you look at Hobbycnc driver board for your controller. It is a kit but has auto heat control for the wire and also it a chopper that is it doesn't need ballast resistors for motors. Also if you can afford it look at their foam cutting package.
http://www.hobbycnc.com
I have no connection with this company but have read good reports from customers in this forum.
Harold

43220
12-25-2007, 01:15 PM
Well, it's been more than a year now since my first post in this thread asking for help in building a machine. So what progress has been made...

zip!

My machine is simple compared to some of those on here - why the ___ can't I get any REAL help here?

I even posted an employment notice at a nearby college's science & tech center (big, impressive building) looking for someone knowledgeable in steppers, etc. (and offering them a job) several weeks back - the result...

zip!

m1911bldr
12-28-2007, 09:31 AM
Being a cabinet maker, I find it hard to believe you haven't made any progress at all. HAve you researched any of the plethora of plans, diagrams, etc on the internet for foam cutting machines? The HObby CNC kits are "one stop shopping" for the entire electronic package. Any sort of relatively smooth, straight rail/roller system will suffice nicely for the moving parts. Although you seem determined to use a moving table instead of a travelling wire, I believe you will find the moving table a challenge - it takes up twice the space since it has to move from one end to the other, it's harder to move a "heavy" table smoothly than it is to move a simple tower/gantry that will weigh less than 3 pounds and a travelling wire gives you much more freedom to use the cutter for lots of different cuts. MACH3 - the G code program - is free to download and should be all you need to make simple cuts. You don't even have to draw anything, just use the arrow keys to move the wire in specific directions at specific dimensions.

43220
12-31-2007, 11:31 AM
I still kind of prefer the sliding table idea as room is not a problem and I believe it will be simpler and better to mount the motors controlling the wire directly to the base table rather than on a moving carriage. Also I can probably get by with only three motors this way rather than four a moving carriage design would require.

I only require a thin sliding table (say 1/4" masonite) which won't weigh much anyway.

I have the motors, just need someone to figure out the associated electronics and connections I need. Still waiting. I can't/won't start building until I have this problem solved.

Todd Price
12-31-2007, 11:58 AM
What type of stuff will you be cutting?

robpiaz
12-31-2007, 12:19 PM
Just sent you a PM. Tried calling.

dsquire
12-31-2007, 03:12 PM
I still kind of prefer the sliding table idea as room is not a problem and I believe it will be simpler and better to mount the motors controlling the wire directly to the base table rather than on a moving carriage. Also I can probably get by with only three motors this way rather than four a moving carriage design would require.

I only require a thin sliding table (say 1/4" masonite) which won't weigh much anyway.

I have the motors, just need someone to figure out the associated electronics and connections I need. Still waiting. I can't/won't start building until I have this problem solved.

Hi

Most people have stayed away from sliding table because of space and added complexity.

What kind of a budget do you have for this machine build?

Lets find out what you really want to accomplish so that we have a better idea on how we can help you.

I believe that you want to cut foam.
Is it R/C aircraft wings?
Might some of them be tapered?
Might you want to cut fuselage shapes?
Will the foam that you are cutting be under 48" in length?
Will the foam that you are cutting be under 36" in width?
Is 4" the Maximum Thickness that you want to cut?

Here are a couple of sites that offer foam cutting machines and instructions.

Home Built Hot wire CNC Foam cutter
http://www.8linx.com/cnc/cnc.htm

Build your personal CNC machine for cutting wings from polystyrene foam
http://gm.cnc.free.fr/en/index.html

Hope that this information will be of some help. If you have any questions just ask.

Thanks and Happy New Year
Don

43220
01-01-2008, 02:43 PM
dsquire:

I believe that you want to cut foam. YES, polyurethane foam.

Is it R/C aircraft wings? NO

Might some of them be tapered? NO

Might you want to cut fuselage shapes? NO

Will the foam that you are cutting be under 48" in length?
Will the foam that you are cutting be under 36" in width?

Is 4" the Maximum Thickness that you want to cut? No, about 2"

Read this entire thread, esp. earlier pages for details.

salvaCNC
02-08-2008, 12:35 AM
You have three choices to pull your project, if you really want to accompish it:

1. THE CHEAPEST. Just cut out templates out of mdf or some cheap particle board with the paths you need and have the hotwire follow these paths manually.

2. THE CREATIVE WOODWORKER WAY. Check Shopnotes magazine. In their publications, they have featured multiple DIY sliding mechanism jigs for routers and saws using cheap gas pipe as rails. I've built a couple of them, though a pain to get them squared, they work great. If you want to get a little fancier, buy the video from Woodworker's supply catalog machine called "The Matchmaker". This machine allows 3 axis movements manually. Just check the mechanism to get ideas. Two opposite machines like this with a hot wire in the middle would be interesting. I've included a picture of what "The Matchmaker" looks like.

3. THE LONG AND PAINFUL ROAD. Do you must have a CNC foam cutter? Just look at your post, one year and no answers.....its only the beginning. Don't buy kits mentioned here. Most boards are a pain. They blow up just by looking at them. Most makers do not like to help newbies. They will only take your money and leave you with the problem. Been there, done that myself. I've even seen cheap plans for CNC foam cutter for sale on Ebay (don't bother either). Any CNC project boils down to electronics (the control board). You can have the fanciest bearings and aluminum extrusions, but you won't make that $1,000 baby move an inch without the control board. Plus, all the software you must mess with is a whole new challenge. My true advice to you: don't waste your money and time on a DIY CNC. If you do not buy an already made factory model with guarantee, trainning and service, do not mess with the DIY idea. It will only bring you lots and lots of frustration and fruitless expenses. ONLY if you are absolutely committed to become a CNC foam cutter expert, go ahead. It's not impossible.


I hope this opens your mind to other alternatives.

Mr.Chips
02-08-2008, 01:47 AM
As Dsquire said the foam cutter example on http://8linx.com/cnc/cnc.htm sounds like it would do what you want it to. And the construction is pretty much spelled out and doesn't require any expensive tools to build.

My suggestion would be to pick up the mechinical parts this weekend and start building, get everything moving by hand, post some pictures and when you have questions and you will, post them and you will see people come to your aid.

Just about everyone doesn't build their dream maching on the first goround, and this construction is't going to be all that expensive for the mechinical portion. So go for it, you will feel better after you start construction.

Good luck and post pictures.

radcliffe
02-08-2008, 12:28 PM
Here is another example of a foam cutter with instructions to build. http://www.homecnc.org/index.php/Cheap_Foam_Cutter Like Mr. Chips said the first machine usually in not perfect the first go around. Just jump in and start building and if you run into problems someone on the zone will help you.
Good Luck and post pictures of your progress.

Harold

esawyja
02-18-2008, 05:55 AM
Maybe mine will give you some ideas, http://www.poly-cor.com

awerby
02-23-2008, 06:06 PM
because you're still alive. Who told you you could cut polyurethane foam with a hot wire? This is something you definitely don't want to burn. It creates highly toxic byproducts (hydrogen cyanide and isocyanates). Styrofoam (beadboard) or EPS (expanded polystyrene) are different; the fumes aren't exactly good for you, but you won't create a mini Bhopal disaster in your shop either. If you really need shapes cut out of PU foam, get someone with a waterjet to do it for you; it's probably cheaper than you think.

Andrew Werby
www.computersculpture.com



dsquire:

I believe that you want to cut foam. YES, polyurethane foam.

Is it R/C aircraft wings? NO

Might some of them be tapered? NO

Might you want to cut fuselage shapes? NO

Will the foam that you are cutting be under 48" in length?
Will the foam that you are cutting be under 36" in width?

Is 4" the Maximum Thickness that you want to cut? No, about 2"

Read this entire thread, esp. earlier pages for details.

Mr.Chips
03-11-2008, 02:30 AM
I'm not a foam cutter but I have some basic knowledge

It sounds like you want to cut something like crown molding. Where the wire stays completely horizontal but moves up and down and back and forth.

The sliding ¼” masonite method wont work because as the wire moves horizontally it will want to tip the uprights over, unless the wire was moved extremely slow. The masonite would have to be weighted a lot to prevent tipping and this would require larger motors to move it then.

The photo below is a pretty simple basic design. It probably would be my choice.

Just a word of caution on the electronics, be absolutely sure that everything is connected properly before Appling power because the majority of the stepper driver boards will self destruct if there is a wire disconnected or wired improperly.

I see you have some electronics, draw out your circuit and post it and have the members check it out first before applying power. There are a lot of highly technical people that will help troubleshoot it, and help you to not make a mistake.

Good luck and keep posting :rainfro:

Mr.Chips
03-11-2008, 03:16 AM
Below is the basic design without guide rails.

The foam to be cut is only shown in the end view.

As you can see the foam is stationary and the wire movers vertically and back and forth horzontally. This requires 4 stepper motors.

Hope this gives you an understanding of the design.

The dim. are for reference only, I know you won't use this much height.

Good Luck

43220
03-30-2008, 10:47 AM
because you're still alive. Who told you you could cut polyurethane foam with a hot wire? This is something you definitely don't want to burn. It creates highly toxic byproducts (hydrogen cyanide and isocyanates). Styrofoam (beadboard) or EPS (expanded polystyrene) are different; the fumes aren't exactly good for you, but you won't create a mini Bhopal disaster in your shop either. If you really need shapes cut out of PU foam, get someone with a waterjet to do it for you; it's probably cheaper than you think.

Andrew Werby
www.computersculpture.com (http://www.computersculpture.com)

Nothing I don't already know about - just requires simple ventilation/exhaust air flow or work outside under a roof/cover.

Waterjet? You're kidding right?

Mr. Chips - I'm familiar with the design you show since it seems to be the most common built here. My design as posted earlier in this thread has the stepper driven wire ends rigidly mounted to the support/base table and they only move vertically a few inches so tipping can't occur. Also the wire cuts thru the foam with little force. Yes, the wire stays always horizontal (parallel to table) but only moves up and down - the sliding table the foam sits on (fastened to) moves in the other axis. I prefer this design even tho it means a larger table (not a problem) as it could mean only three motors* instead of four - simpler is better.

*Sliding table driven by one motor.

43220
03-31-2008, 01:25 AM
deleted

frequent flyer
04-13-2008, 11:45 AM
HI
I just joined and want to say hello everyone.

Frequent Flyer

43220
04-24-2008, 04:20 PM
Well. I have my table built and a sliding patform with belt drive connected to a stepper motor. Also have a power supply, driver, and of course an OLD computer to try running it with. Also two other motors to control the wire position with.

Now, I need programmimg and software but don't know squat about computers, software, programming, G-codes, DATS, and all the other blah, blah I see talked about here.

Where can I go to get the info/help a dummy like me needs?

Interestingly, I see Foamworks is about a 2 hour drive from me but today wasn't answering his phone. :mad:

Basically, I only need to cut two simple patterns as shown:

salvaCNC
04-25-2008, 12:31 AM
Isn't that foam supposed to be poisonous if you cut it using hotwire?

I remember reading something about it somewhere. You better make sure you won't fry your brain cutting that stuff.

esawyja
04-25-2008, 01:00 AM
I use AutoCad to do the design, DESKCNC for the G code and Mach3 (Quantum) for the control of the machine, see www.poly-cor.com , the CNC page
Hope that helps

43220
04-25-2008, 10:21 AM
Isn't that foam supposed to be poisonous if you cut it using hotwire?

I remember reading something about it somewhere. You better make sure you won't fry your brain cutting that stuff.


I can't believe some people post on this site without reading through a subject's ENTIRE thread first.

This issue has allready been mentioned and I replied to it a couple of pages ago.

esawyja: went to poly-cor cnc page and it gives the basic outline of what I need. Now I need specifics.

You say "I use AutoCad to do the design, DESKCNC for the G code and Mach3 (Quantum) for the control of the machine," Great, but I know virtually nothing about all three.

Could be a very good time for someone nearby to stop by my place to help me out.

esawyja
05-08-2008, 05:31 AM
esawyja: went to poly-cor cnc page and it gives the basic outline of what I need. Now I need specifics.

You say "I use AutoCad to do the design, DESKCNC for the G code and Mach3 (Quantum) for the control of the machine," Great, but I know virtually nothing about all three.

AutoCad - It is a CAD program, I use it to design the cornice and save the drawing in dxf format
DESKCNC - You can control the machine with DESKCNC, but I choose to use Mach3, but with Mach 3, I cannot generate the G-code needed, so I import the dxf file made with AutoCad into DESKCNC and then generate the G-code using DESKCNC
Mach3 - This is used to control the stepper motors, I load the generated G-code into Mach3, Mach3 then uses the G-Code to pulse the stepper motors to move

Hope that helps

https://www.poly-cor.com

43220
05-20-2008, 12:50 PM
I am looking for mentor help - posted on mentor forum:

http://www.cnczone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=58197

43220
09-09-2008, 06:35 PM
I'll probably die of old age before I ever get this machine working.

43220
09-19-2008, 07:38 PM
BTW, the software I have bought for this is Quickstep, but I haven't a clue how to use it.


:confused: :confused: :confused: :confused:

43220
04-06-2009, 07:07 AM
Going on 2-1/2 years here and I still don't have a running machine.

If anyone wants my phone no. to call me, just PM me for it or send me yours and when I can call you.

I'm open to traveling (reasonable trip) to look at someones machine and/or get help.

cnccutter
04-06-2009, 06:26 PM
Looks like you need a hand with the software? Is your machine all hooked up? You could come and look at my machine if you like, bring a piece of foam to cut...

43220
09-20-2009, 02:40 PM
Going on 2-1/2 years here and I still don't have a running machine.

If anyone wants my phone no. to call me, just PM me for it or send me yours and when I can call you.

I'm open to traveling (reasonable trip) to look at someones machine and/or get help.


:rolleyes:

43220
03-26-2010, 10:12 AM
:confused:

also: http://www.cnczone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=58197

43220
03-29-2010, 07:33 PM
Still requesting help!

What happened to all those who posted here previously??

Now going on 3-1/2 years since this thread was started!!

43220
06-02-2010, 04:01 PM
useless

dsquire
06-02-2010, 04:40 PM
43220

I don't know why it is that no one has been able to help you. I certainly have to give you credit for having stuck with the thread trying to find help this long which is just 2 days shy of 2 1/2 years. I wish you well in your search for answers.

Cheers :cheers:

Don

cnccutter
06-02-2010, 05:05 PM
USELESS
Have you got your machine together? What boards do you have? Give up some current information..

43220
08-18-2010, 08:13 AM
I give up - if anyone wants it, I will sell all the equipment (hardware & software, steppers, etc.) I bought for this project for $100.

Here's pictures of some of the stuff - there's more of the controls, load resistors, etc. than shown. Much more than $100 worth!

Everything but the motors (there are 3, brand new & never used) came from this ebay seller: http://stores.ebay.com/HUBBARD-CNC-INC

AMZ
09-05-2010, 11:52 AM
I'm interested in your gear. I PM'd you, but your box is full.
Drop me a line if it's still available.
Thanks!

43220
09-06-2010, 09:41 AM
Try again