2015 CNC Router build 011

Posted by ultralajt on April 18, 2015 at 2:05 AM Comments comments (1)

Machine is working now for about a week. I need to rfine some details that are not cruical for its actual run, but they are desirable. Dust collection and cyclone dust separator, linear rail ust protection (covering), material hold down to the table elements, Led light on the gantry, ceiling rail for routing the dust collector tube from the machine to the cyclone....

A short video of milling thin plastic:

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As you can see tiny shavings fly all around the router and electrostatically stick to everything. A dust collection is a must!

Dust collector:

Photo above: Dust collector attached to the spindle holder.

After having thin dust all over my workshop I decided to make a dust collector. I use 3 mm thick plywood and cut multiple sections, that were then stacked one over another and glued together.

Photo above: dust collector is easy to install or remove by means of two vertical pins and arresting bolt with a knob.

Photo above: Milling dust collector parts from a plywood.

Photo above: dust collector parts prepared for stacking them one over another to get one solid part.

Photos above: Glued and painted dust collector. Attachment pins and pvc skirt is next to attach on.

2015 CNC Router build 010

Posted by ultralajt on April 6, 2015 at 7:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Today I finally be able to make some test runs of the mill bit trough 3mm thick white poplar plywood. I am sure now that soon my machine will be fully operational.

Video of the first test on the material:

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 I need to make proper wiring of the motors and end switches in next days. Also I need to install ust collecting system, and a strong baqse frame for macnine to stand on. Of course, I need to fine tune the machine (motor tuning.. speed and accelerations..)

2015 CNC Router build 009

Posted by ultralajt on March 29, 2015 at 11:45 AM Comments comments (0)

Unfortunately I was unable to make 3 axis TB6065 control board to work. I use settings as they came with the board on a small CD, but it wont work. As I knew other buyers of this controller solve problems in various aproaches, I try to use pin and ports settings as found on various Internet sites for that board. It didnt work for me...  I was playing with settings whole yesterday and today I finaly loose patience.

O.K., the board cost me only 35€, so no big deal...but it is a bitter taste anyway throwing away 35€...

Photo above: wiring on the table. No succsess....

After trying each one setting found for this board i give up... some of buyers made some electronic modifications on the board in order to work flawless, but I dont want to mess with soldering iron on "fragile" and tiny spots on the board.

So, I simply remove complete electronic from my old CFNC machine and I will use it on my new machine.

I connect motors to the control board on the table and it works instantly. It needs just some refined settings for the motor current and the holding power. When 100% holding power is selected, the buzzing noise is not present. Othervise (cee video), the buzzing, somehow annoying noise is present, but it became less loud when a spindle motor is ON.

Video of the first motor test, without any tunning:

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So, a decision is made: I will use H! controller and forget about cheap eBay  board that has so many faults....

2015 CNC Router build 008

Posted by ultralajt on March 26, 2015 at 2:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Machine will be ready for electric wiring and conections in couple of days. Just some minor mechanical work is to be done to finish the machine... as replacing some bolts with proper one (length, head type..), and to finish motor mounts (rounding corners... ect..)

I install all three stepper motors:

Photo above: "X" axis stepper motor. Mounting brackets need to be refined and bolts to replaced with shorter one.

Photo above: "Y" axis stepper motor.

Photo above: "Z" axis stepper motor. Note, inox threaded rod M8 and tubular stubs for the stepper motor.

Photo above: MIlling router bolted on the "Z" axis for size reference...

2015 CNC Router build 007

Posted by ultralajt on March 1, 2015 at 9:45 AM Comments comments (0)

Today I was working on "Z" axis, its motor mount and "Y" axis threaded rod assembly. It is not finished yet, but roughly assembled.

I need to finish some details and purchase all the bolts of the proper length. Now I just use bolts that lay around in my workshop, so many of them are too long or with inproper head style. Probably tomorrow will replace all these bolts.

And it is a time to order some tiny items for installation of the "X" threaded rod, motor-rod couplers..

Photo above: "Z" axis.... The motor mount and threaded rod assembly need still to be figured out and manufactured.

Photo above: "Y" axis threaded tod installation. I simply clamp the ball bearing into the 30mm diameter rod holder. It was cheaper than any other option I look at...

Photo above: View of the "Y" axis. Some items still missing... a motor/threaded rod coupling obviously not installed yet.

2015 CNC Router build 006

Posted by ultralajt on February 28, 2015 at 12:20 PM Comments comments (0)

After more than a week being ill I manage today to continue with CNC Router assembly.

Meanwhile I recieved some more items needed for completing the machine:

Threaded rods:

Photo above: Rod end at motor side. Place for the coupler, nut and two row axial bearing.

Photo above: Oposite end of the theraded rod. Place for radial bearing and securing ring.

Photo above: Rod clamps will be used for securing bearings to the machine frame. Upper right two trapeze thread nuts in aluminum casings.

I cut a hole in 15 mm thick aluminum plate to be a holder-clamp for my Router.

Photo above: drilling a 34 mm diameter hole for the spindle holder.

Photo above: working on the Z axis...

Photo above: Spindle on its place. Of course i t will be suported in its upper side also to minimize vibrations. Nore, just few bolts attached as it is assembly in process.. not finished yet. Must assembla and disassemble parts frequently during assembly of the machine.

Photo above: Here the threaded rod will be placed soon to drive the Y axis.

Photo above: Temporary at its place.. Z axis.

2015 CNC Router build 005

Posted by ultralajt on February 27, 2015 at 7:00 PM Comments comments (0)

While I am waiting for more items to came by post, I attach  the water resistant plywood plate to the machine frame.

Then I prepare a template for drilling holes into the board, where I will screw in the metal inserts taht has inner thread for attaching material on the board.

Photo above: Plywood board attached to the aluminum frame.

Photo above: I "sink" screw heads under the board surface.

Photo above: Drilling holes in the board using aluminum template as a guide. Template was attached to the gantry, to asure proper aligment.

Photo above: metal inserts to be screwed into the holes. Outer diameter 6mm. Inside thread M4.

Photo above: Threaded inserts installed. As I have some more, maybe I will install all of them.

So much for now.

2015 CNC Router build 004

Posted by ultralajt on February 14, 2015 at 2:15 AM Comments comments (1)

I recieved some of the items ordered from Germany:

Clamps for lenghtwise rails:

Z axis rails:

I purchased also a strong laminated plywood with protective coating for the woking bench..smooth on one side and textured on another. Probably I will place it textured side up.The free height between bench and gantry is slightly over 11 cm.

I also order clamps for upper rail on the gantry (rail on the photo is just a rod for "mockup". I need to order proper rod thesedays:

2015 CNC Router build 003

Posted by ultralajt on February 8, 2015 at 10:55 AM Comments comments (3)

Today I almost finished the basic frame of the machine. Now it is time to purchase some of the parts I cant make by myself.

For the bench..working table I will purchase a very thick plywood plate and bolt it on the frame. When machine will be operable, It will drill by itself a grid of holes in the plywood. I will insert then metal screw-in inserts with inside threads for attaching material to the bench. They could be used also for attaching a vacuum table on the bench.

For completing the machine I need urgently to purchase steel rod clamps both for X and Y axes. Next I need to purchase rails with bearings for Z axis, stock aluminum plates for Z axis assembly, trapeze threaded rods and nuts for all axes, axial and radial bearings....

I am looking forward to complete machine as soon as possible.

2015 CNC Router build 002

Posted by ultralajt on February 7, 2015 at 12:45 PM Comments comments (0)

Work on the basic frame continues.

Today I assemble rough frame of the gantry:

I start assembling the aluminum structure that will support the working bench of the router:

2015 CNC Router build 001

Posted by ultralajt on January 31, 2015 at 2:50 AM Comments comments (3)

I started to do some actual work in the workshop on my new CNC router last evening. I was working on the main frame basic elements. There was a large cross section aluminum profile to cut. It was not an easy job, as cross section is ~50x150mm.

But first, some general data for this new machine.

Awerall dimensions: 1750 x 920 x 620mm (L x W x H)

Working space: 1430 x 500 x 100mm (L x W x H)

This router will be mostly used for 2,5D carving of thin plywood, balsa, solid wood  and thin aluminum.

Probably the finished machine will look at the end different as on these renderings, as it is possible that I will change my mind on some details while building it. Also on the renderings there are a lot of details I simply did not modelled as they will be solved on the fly while assembly the machine. I didnt have time nore will to model all tiny bits on the computer. I need to assemble this machine as soon as possible, so fiddling with vitrual parts that are not necessarry I simply left alone... ;)

The largest profiles are extruded profiles specially made for industrial usage (meat processing-transporting rails) , while smaller profiles are commercially available at hardwerstores.

Some shots from my workshop:

Photo above: it was not so easy to cut these profiles with handsaw.

Photo above: drilling big holes (73mm diameter) trough both vertical members of gantry assembly to accept main linear bearings.

Photo above: nice and clean cut trough a 3mm thick aluminum wall.

Photo above: these linear bearings for an 38mm diameter rods will be firmly installed on these vertical gantry stubs.

So much for now.... will be continued...

Routing again!

Posted by ultralajt on April 24, 2013 at 5:05 AM Comments comments (0)

After a very long pause, I turn on my CNC machine yesterday again. :P

As I installed much more powerfull router, I was able to rise the feed rate, so now I am pretty happy with the speed:

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As lite ply was not firmly attached to the table..just weighted with UPS battery, I help with hands to prevent moving of the wood.. :D  

Please dont do that at home!! :D :D :D

Power Supply

Posted by ultralajt on January 16, 2013 at 2:55 PM Comments comments (0)

Today I recieved a Power Supply.

It was purchased on Ebay: 24V 14.6A 350W AC/DC Switching Power Supply

I wonder (there was no instructuons with power supply) what is the function of that yellow trimmer right of the green LED. As on the housing "ADJ" is written.. I suspect that it serves for ajusting the output voltage....

I will measure the otput voltage and turning this trimer to see the effect.

3 Axis Controller

Posted by ultralajt on January 5, 2013 at 5:50 AM Comments comments (5)

Yesterday I recieved 3Axis CNC controller.

I am waiting for the Power Supply.

I read some bad and some good opinions about this China made Controller. Some earlier Controllers suffer for some bad manufacturing and errors...

I hope, that these newest series are free of those problems. At first glance, the craftmanship of the item looks well.

CNC 2013 lowering the costs

Posted by ultralajt on December 2, 2012 at 10:55 AM Comments comments (1)

In order to lower the machine costs, I am playing with idea to use linear rods and bearings in their original assembly. This way a gantry will became kind of cantilever arm, but it will be anyway suported at its free end by means of simple rail and roller.

Tke frame will be this way less complicated and all I need is a strong plywood board to the router table, some aluminum profiles or angles and 4 adjustable legs.

I did not decided yet if this is s final soluton, but a temptation is great...

CNC 2013 is taking shape

Posted by ultralajt on November 21, 2012 at 2:30 AM Comments comments (3)

Based on the linear motion parts that I got from a friend, a basic shape of my new CNC router is born.

Planned working area is about 60 x 120 x 10cm..24 x 48 x 4" (W, L, H)

This is a preliminary design layout:

Basic structure will be made from 100 x 50 mm extruded aluminum profiles.

Both longest rails are NB Linear Systems SFW24 1 1/2".

They are case hardened with controlled surface hardness and consistent adequate hardness depth. The surface hardness is achieved using high frequency induction hardening techniques. The surface hardness for SFW type is 60-64 Rc.

Router "ride" on the gantry across the working table over another set of linear motion rails.

The botom one is 1" diameter and another is 3/4". Bottom one is supported and uper one is attached on its end only.

For the X and Y axis I will use Powerpac 1.8°step motors, model K31SSFS-LEK-SS-02

Motors are equipped with encoders, but I am thinking, that are not necessarry for my type and mission of the machine.

So much for now.  It is a project for the next year.

New Spindle

Posted by ultralajt on October 16, 2012 at 5:25 AM Comments comments (3)

I finally decided to purchase better spindle for my CNC router.

Till now, I use cheap "dremel alike" tool like this one:

Unfortunately these cheap spindles (15-35€ ) are not suitable for prolonged work. On the router, usually some 20 to 45 minutes is required for one milling session, and this weak electric tool gets very hot...and in short time tool left its soul with some smoke.

So, I started searching for "industrial grade" spindles available on the net.

Most often KRESS spindles are used on Hobby CNC machines, but they are more pricely (~150€ and up, depending on power)

In searching for same power, yet lower price, I find one very affordable Spindle.

It is CauCau 850W:

This 850W machine costs only 49€.

Technical data

 Max Motor HP: 850W

Voltage: 230V / 50Hz

No Load RPM: 11500-32000

Diameter : 44mm

Collet : 6mm + 8 mm

I am looking forward to install this Spindle to my DIY CNC Router Z axis!

New CNC 2013

Posted by ultralajt on September 22, 2012 at 2:10 PM Comments comments (1)

I am preparing to build another CNC router, this time larger and more powerful.

Table size ~750 x 1500 mm!

Here are some of the components I intend to use:

This will be Y-axis... 1 inch Chrome plated rod with aluminum support.

NB Systems TWA16WUU 1" inch Ball Bushing Block Linear Motion

PowerPac 1.8° Step Motor Model K31SSFS-LEK-SS-02 w/ Accu-Coder 6310783-01  35 V / 119 W

They will run on  X and Y axis.

So much for now.


If I build this machine once again....

Posted by ultralajt on January 12, 2012 at 1:45 AM Comments comments (6)

As I cut only balsa, thin plywood and white poplar plywood, machine is not stressed much and aluminum profiles dont bend. The acuracy of the machine is somwhere of about 0,15-0,2mm. That is mainly because freeplay between threaded rods and nuts, and a little because freeplay between ball bearing rollers and rail profiles. Of course, these tolerances are not bothered me as for carving parts for my models that is quite okay. The tolerances are expressed mostly at sharp changes od part contours. For instance, a circle has slight steps top, bottom, left and right, where one axis change travel 180°.


If I would build that machine once again, I would change these:

- "X" rail profiles (long rails at each side of the table) will make from 30x30 INOX

- lower the "Z" axis as I dont carve molds (I was thinking that I will make also molds for composite fuselages, wings and canopies, so I made 100 mm of Z axix travel) I did not carve any molds up to date, so ...

- use M12 trapeze threaded rods and fine bronze nuts to eliminate any freeplay.

- install 2 threaded rods for X axes, one at each rail, not only one in the middle of the table as it is now. These two threaded rods will be connected with a helicopter tail rotor belt (cheap replacement item) and will be driven by one common stepper motor. This will make machine more acurate and will lower the stress in the gantry when cutting tool is near the edge of the table.

- replace tiny stepper motors (Nema 17) with larger (Nema 23) as they are much stronger.

- change the machine electronics. Now I work with electronic that is connected to computer via LPT port, large printer port on the motherboard, that is no more widely available, as USB ports are more common these days. So, I would search for electronics that works via USB cable.


Mill bits

Posted by ultralajt on February 24, 2009 at 4:56 AM Comments comments (0)

Finnally, the ordered mill bits for wood arrive!

Cant wait to test them on the machine  :P

1mm, 1,5mm and 2mm diameter should be good for my needs for now.

Here is the link to the webshop, where I make order: