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milford
10-14-2004, 02:29 PM
Hi guys, I hope you can help. I'm going to build a cnc for woodworking only, no metal. I make custom guitar bodies and necks. I need a 24 x 24 cutting area. What materials do you think I should build the frame out of? Aluminum, MDF, Steel. What size motors do you think will be satisfactory for the guitar body blanks? (17 x 21 x 2). I used to own a 4 x 8 shopbot but had to sell it. I do miss it but it took up my whole garage. The wife wasn't happy. I can put the smaller one into my workshop, but I don't think it's worth the cost for their benchtop model. So I'm going to build. I need to utilize a full sized router, not the dremel. Are the download plans suitable for this application? If not, who do you reccomend? I'm hoping to keep the do-overs to a minimum. This forum is a great source for information, experience, inspiration, and sometimes humor. I love it and hope to contribute. Anyway, all input is valued. Thanks....

BigDaddyG
10-14-2004, 03:57 PM
Milford,
I personally would not build a frame out of anything other than Aluminum Extrusion. It does tend to be more expensive, but the time you save on fab, and the strength is hard to match. If you pay attention to the pics on the site, you will see others use it as well. I have sources for extrusion and would be happy to pass them on to you, but you can get it from McMaster-Carr. If I remember correctly, a stick from them of 40x80 (1-1/2x3") x 8' is around $50.00. I use Frame World, and all there stock is in US inch, the holes on the ends of the frame tap with 5/16-18 and the fastener inserts are 5/16" and 1/4-20. Faztec is another US company that you can design a frame, send it to them and they will deliver the entire frame in box with all the fasteners and brackets needed to construct the entire frame. I have the luxury of having an ample supply on hand in my garage (when I build a machine for a customer, I usually order several sticks extra to add to my personal supply).

Motors and Drivers - Automation Direct just came out with a new series of Stepper/Driver/Power Supply / Motor combo's! You can also find very good sources here, but for me to be able to purchase a combo pack, have it delivered in a day or two all configured (with 20' of wire) and ready to run is a big plus. Here you would be looking at around $300 - $450 per axis for 450 oz/in package. Not bad at all.

I hope this helps. I have several motors, ball screws, rail / brg. combos at home I have been wanting to sell but just can't seem to find the time to list them. If you need some design help I would be happy to assist you as will many here I am sure. Good luck!

Regards,
Glen