Rookie wants to build a cnc mill/drill.


Results 1 to 16 of 16

Thread: Rookie wants to build a cnc mill/drill.

  1. #1
    Registered
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    11
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default Rookie wants to build a cnc mill/drill.

    Hello, I'm new here, so tell me if this is the wrong place for this post.
    I was thinking of building a two axis cnc mill/drill like: http://www.pathcom.com/~vhchan/cnc/cnc.html
    Seems like a two axis would be easier because I just want to build my own machine, for the fun of it (I don't need a professional machine).
    Just how hard is this to do? About how long would it take for a rookie?
    Can I do an OK job for say $600? Thanks.

    Similar Threads:


  2. #2
    Community Moderator Al_The_Man's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    24032
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    I think you will get the same advise here that you got over in the cnczone forum, Don't bother trying to convert a drill to mill, Not Rigid enough.
    Al.

    CNC, Mechatronics Integration and Custom Machine Design

    “Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.”
    Albert E.


  3. #3
    Registered
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    11
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    What exactly is so loose about them, is it the post that supports the headstock, or is it the bearings in the quill?
    What sort of setup would be better?



  4. #4
    Registered
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    11
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    Say, are you a moderator on the PM forum too?!



  5. #5
    Moderator Switcher's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    United States
    Posts
    3634
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Nathan Flycuter View Post
    Hello, I'm new here, so tell me if this is the wrong place for this post.
    I was thinking of building a two axis cnc mill/drill like: http://www.pathcom.com/~vhchan/cnc/cnc.html
    Seems like a two axis would be easier because I just want to build my own machine, for the fun of it (I don't need a professional machine).
    Just how hard is this to do? About how long would it take for a rookie?
    Can I do an OK job for say $600? Thanks.
    Might work for light cuts, like PCB's.



    .



  6. #6
    Registered
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    11
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    Guy claims it will cut .020" with 1/4" endmill in steel. Not impressive, but something. What I want is a very basic two axis cnc mill I can build myself that will cut steel OK. Just want to mess around.



  7. #7
    Registered
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    us
    Posts
    1187
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    Hey Nathan , take it from me, you would better off by saving some dough and buying a mill locally or off EBAY. Then do a cnc conversion. I built my mill from scratch and by the time it was done I had spent many, many and I mean many hours building it and for a couple of hundred dollars more I could have picked up an X3. Here,s a link to my build http://www.cnczone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=18992
    My Manual small mill project - CNCzone.com-The Ultimate Machinist Community



  8. #8
    Registered
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    11
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    Well after looking at your thread I think your right, IF you want performance, buy it! But all I want is to play around, question is: Can you build a small cnc machine that will cut metal, (slowly but surely) and not spend a million bucks and/or the rest of your life. If not then you have saved me a whole lot of trouble.

    Last edited by Nathan Flycuter; 03-25-2007 at 10:35 PM.


  9. #9
    Registered
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    11
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    But is the answer yes or no?



  10. #10
    Registered
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    424
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Nathan Flycuter View Post
    Just how hard is this to do? About how long would it take for a rookie?

    Can I do an OK job for say $600? Thanks.

    Can you build a small cnc machine that will cut metal, (slowly but surely) and not spend a million bucks and/or the rest of your life.
    By your own admission you don't know what you are doing, so that more then likely means you don't have any other equipment or tooling(which more often is more expensive then the machine), you should investigate what else you need just to build it.
    My advice,
    You can buy an seig x2 and convert it for around $800-$1000 if you are cheap about it and do alot of work yourself. That appears to be the same size machine you are looking at. This will give you a good machine base, doing "OK" in metal work will more then likely lead to injury before results that you would expect. As for spending the rest of your life doing it, converting a drill press without any other machines to do the machining will take along time. In addition, you are on the wrong track with a straight drill the spindle is not designed to side cut like a mill is, the bearings are only designed to push into stock. The whole setup is nowhere near as rigid(solid) for side cutting, and you wiill have to devise a spindle lock of some sorts not to mention the questionable locks on the table and column. Cutting metal is not as much about speed as it is about being able to cut it at all, its always slow on this size machine without a ridgid base your tooling will just deflect and break. If you were to expend the effort to build a machine you would almost be best off to totally build a machine from scratch then try and convert something else to a mill. Most machines share the same major features, after that its all in the designers head as to what it does and needs to do.

    chris



  11. #11
    Registered
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    11
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    After thinking it over last night I think you guys are right. Building a gizmo like this would take a long time, and would not be worth it. Thanks all.



  12. #12
    Gold Member BobWarfield's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    2502
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    Nathan, the boards have basically banned drill press CNC machines. It IS very hard to build one that will work well, but not impossible. The fellow from the link you've given managed to accomplish it, albeit at a cost of completely re-engineering the drill press.

    In answer to your question, the primary problem with the drill press is that the spindle doesn't like side loads, which are what you impose while milling. It's designed to take forces strictly up down, which is what happens when drilling. The fellow in your link rebuilt the spindle to overcome this problem. That's part of what I mean by completely re-engineering it. By the time you rebuild the spindle and fabricate some kind of X-Y table driven by steppers, there's not a lot of the original drill press left!

    Here is what I find funny. There are folks building CNC routers out of MDF, pipes, and skate bearings and they're getting great results. Perhaps that's a better path for your learning? At least you'd get more folks interested in helping you.

    My guess is you could build one of those just fine for the money you talk about. I wouldn't try to machine steel with it, but you might just get by with aluminum, which would let you create some interesting parts.

    It is pretty amazing what can be accomplished with ingenuity. Since you've indicated you're primarily interested in learning, and I suspect your resources are limited, better to try something than nothing. You'll just be less frustrated if you can pick a path that doesn't require so much custom work to get the machine off the ground.

    Best of Luck, and don't give up!

    BW

    PS And yes, lots of folks read both boards, although PM is dramatically less tolerant of anyone not using a REAL machine tool. The board owner himself will get on and chew you out if you spend too much time writing about drill press CNC.



  13. #13
    Registered
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    us
    Posts
    1187
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    Nathan it,s not that you can,t do it, you can really but if you looked at my build, I tore my mill back down a couple of times to get it so that it cuts precisely and with muscle. The time is what killed me as it took up some of my precious time, I would have really been better off buying an Sieg X3, However my mill is top notch now and I,m satisfied with it. And hey I,m gonna hook you up with a site that I love. This link is the site that all counties in the U.S. use to sell thier surplus equiptment. I missed out on some Sherline CNc mills that went for around $300. Just keep checking the site along with Ebay . If ya have a bargain magazine or newspaper, constantly check that out. Look for estate sales, you can REALLY hook up good deals at those. Anyway here,s that link http://www.govdeals.com/eas/index.cfm
    GovDeals Home



  14. #14
    Moderator Switcher's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    United States
    Posts
    3634
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ZipSnipe View Post
    Nathan it,s not that you can,t do it, you can really but if you looked at my build, I tore my mill back down a couple of times to get it so that it cuts precisely and with muscle. The time is what killed me as it took up some of my precious time, I would have really been better off buying an Sieg X3, However my mill is top notch now and I,m satisfied with it. And hey I,m gonna hook you up with a site that I love. This link is the site that all counties in the U.S. use to sell thier surplus equiptment. I missed out on some Sherline CNc mills that went for around $300. Just keep checking the site along with Ebay . If ya have a bargain magazine or newspaper, constantly check that out. Look for estate sales, you can REALLY hook up good deals at those. Anyway here,s that link http://www.govdeals.com/eas/index.cfm
    GovDeals Home
    Was that the auction I posted a while back, in Florida?

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The only catch to all of the auctions in your link, & the one I posted below is:

    1) You have to pick it up in person, thats why the bids stay very low.
    2) Sometimes, you have to load the item that you win.

    This is a link to another Gov. Military surplus site. Another problem with a lot of items on both sites is, they sometimes leave the auction item's sitting outside to rust.

    http://www.govliquidation.com/index.html

    .



  15. #15
    Moderator Switcher's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    United States
    Posts
    3634
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default

    Look at all the lathes sitting outside (background) in the link below, just waiting for the rust!

    What a waste!

    http://www.govliquidation.com/aucimg...35/3834673.jpg

    .



  16. #16
    Registered
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    usa
    Posts
    2
    Downloads
    0
    Uploads
    0

    Default Mill from Drill press

    I am in the process of trying to convert a drill press to a mill as well, however what I have in store is to use a heavy bearing such as an auto hub bearing and attach below the spindle and use the spindle to drive that bearing, therefore taking the side pressure off the spindle bearings, then putting a collet on the bottom making a taper on my lathe, then I must make the table so that it moves vertically with no slop in the movement. the press I have is a hitachi table model and the rack that moves the table up and down is designed to move around the column. to solve this I will likely either make a rack with a finer gear and adjustment lever with a dial, or as i have already started I drilled and tapped the top and bottom of the rack to the side of the column but when cranking the table up and down there is still a lot of slop and sideways movement. the only way to overcome this would be to remachine the rack or put gibs in the sides to eliminate lateral movement. once this is tackled, then a precision cross slide vise would suffice for x-y movement. although mine will probably be used for light material such as aluminum, with this modification I should be able to use heavier material as well, and if I need the drill press I just remove the bearing assembly and put the chuck on. The only major drawback on this is it reduces the overall hight but only by a few inches, maybe four. since the auto bearing hub assembly is designed for heavy use should provide enough laterla strength. perhaps once this is all accomplished it could then be converted to cnc.



Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  


About CNCzone.com

    We are the largest and most active discussion forum for manufacturing industry. The site is 100% free to join and use, so join today!

Follow us on


Our Brands

Rookie wants to build a cnc mill/drill.

Rookie wants to build a cnc mill/drill.

Rookie wants to build a cnc mill/drill.