(Topic ID: 202791)

** The Journey of Building a Bench CNC for a custom game **


By swinks

2 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 98 posts
  • 28 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by Gorgonzola
  • Topic is favorited by 62 Pinsiders

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    Topic poll

    “Are you interested in getting a Bench CNC to make things?”

    • No - but want to watch the journey and learn 10 votes
      24%
    • Yes - want to do a pinball project one day 2 votes
      5%
    • Yes - really interested as want to make my own pinball playfields as well 20 votes
      48%
    • Yes - want to do projects outside of pinball 6 votes
      14%
    • No - just curious on the poll data 4 votes
      10%

    (42 votes)

    Topic Gallery

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    There are 98 posts in this topic. You are on page 2 of 2.
    #51 2 years ago

    got the bench tops on, handle, locking mech and a few other bits, setup the computer etc and then continued on with the cnc. I placed a whirlwind playfield on the cnc bed to check that it will cut a playfield - and then checked the router limits and max length that it will cut is 1295mm (close to 51 inches) in length and will do a standard and wide body playfield as 90's Ballys are 46 inches long.

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    #52 2 years ago

    Looks about the right size.

    #53 2 years ago
    Quoted from GimpMaster:

    Looks about the right size.

    yes, got 5 inches to spare - so 2.5 inches at each end, bummer it misses by 15mm for the sides of a cabinet, but I will do a 2 stage cut

    #54 2 years ago

    Looks great. I was worried youd have no place to set down your beer but 5 inches is plenty.

    #55 2 years ago

    Now put up a tally sign for how many router bits break.

    #56 2 years ago
    Quoted from Wolfmarsh:

    Now put up a tally sign for how many router bits break.

    arhhh, there is going to be a whiteboard when the table is up so will do in the top corner lol

    In the past when I had a beast 8x4' cnc I often used 1/4 ones and didn't break many - maybe your settings are too fast for the cutting

    Quoted from Fifty:

    Looks great. I was worried youd have no place to set down your beer but 5 inches is plenty.

    once the bench space is cleared a bit I will have a heap of room either side.

    #57 2 years ago

    Great design! I am waiting for my handheld cnc router to arrive in the next month or so. It solves all of my space issues and I can take it to the work which will be helpful as well.

    https://shapertools.com

    Preview :

    Look forward to see what you make!

    --Kevin

    #58 2 years ago
    Quoted from Cappi:

    Great design! I am waiting for my handheld cnc router to arrive in the next month or so. It solves all of my space issues and I can take it to the work which will be helpful as well.
    https://shapertools.com
    Preview : » YouTube video
    Look forward to see what you make!
    --Kevin

    How mucb did that end up costing?

    #59 2 years ago

    Right now it's 2k, I got in at 1800 and got referrals down to 1600. We'll see.. I'm still apprehensive that it's going to be good for playfields or not but we'll see.

    Quoted from Cappi:

    Great design! I am waiting for my handheld cnc router to arrive in the next month or so.

    Are you batch one?

    #60 2 years ago
    Quoted from swinks:

    arhhh, there is going to be a whiteboard when the table is up so will do in the top corner lol
    In the past when I had a beast 8x4' cnc I often used 1/4 ones and didn't break many - maybe your settings are too fast for the cutting

    Most of my breaks have been because of my poor planning, never when cutting is going well yet, lol. The 1/4 bits are nice for the cabs, I have been using 1/8 for playfields and have broken my fair share of those.

    Noob mistakes like letting an internal scrap piece come loose and jam up in the bit, or putting a hold down right in the path of a bit, or not lifting Z up before homing the machine and running the bit into hold downs.

    #61 2 years ago
    Quoted from Cappi:

    Great design! I am waiting for my handheld cnc router to arrive in the next month or so. It solves all of my space issues and I can take it to the work which will be helpful as well.
    https://shapertools.com
    Preview : » YouTube video
    Look forward to see what you make!
    --Kevin

    they are cool and was interested but they are not selling overseas

    #62 2 years ago
    Quoted from Wolfmarsh:

    Most of my breaks have been because of my poor planning, never when cutting is going well yet, lol. The 1/4 bits are nice for the cabs, I have been using 1/8 for playfields and have broken my fair share of those.
    Noob mistakes like letting an internal scrap piece come loose and jam up in the bit, or putting a hold down right in the path of a bit, or not lifting Z up before homing the machine and running the bit into hold downs.

    that happens, I remember when I had a big cnc my first cut was a nice big slot into the vacuum bed - it happens lol.

    - I try and do most cuts with 1/4" cutter unless the radius is smaller bigger than 1/8" then I will switch to a 1/8" cutter
    - where possible on smaller bits add a tab if possible, a little more cleanup but saves the cutters
    - also check and control the final outer or inner cut direction (clockwise / anticlockwise) as this helps avoid the release of loose parts away from the cutter

    #63 2 years ago
    Quoted from Wolfmarsh:

    Now put up a tally sign for how many router bits break.

    Look into a copy of the machinery's handbook. There is a big section on speeds and feeds and the calculation for what speed you should spin the spindle. Also the ipm of how fast you can cut whatever material your cutting.

    1 week later
    #64 2 years ago

    I assembled the Inventables X-Controller which firstly I was unaware that it cam in pieces but it was a simple build though the on-line is better as a reference to assemble over the pdf download.

    the parts before assembly
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    comes with a e-stop
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    usb plug in, start, pause and restart controllers on the controller
    IMG_3768 (resized).JPG

    opposite end has X, 2 x Y's and Z connection, along with 3 homing switches, tool height probe and a few others things that might be handy down the track
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    #65 2 years ago

    because the drag chain and brackets comes as a optional extra I chose not to purchase as was not the cheapest and there were no photos of what it looked like or how to it fitted so I chose to get my own drag chain and designed a few 3D printed brackets (orange parts) which do the part and a lot cheaper. I will document where they fit and the settings in the document and not bore you here.
    IMG_3769 (resized).JPG

    the machine coming along and close to anchoring to the table this weekend all going well though going to be insanely hot this weekend so will see if I can be bothered. My router mount came in and is fitted to the front of the z axis
    IMG_3770 (resized).JPG

    #66 2 years ago

    You clever bugger, Happy New Year my briney brother.

    #67 2 years ago

    Following this with great interest.

    Thanks swinks.

    #68 2 years ago
    Quoted from oldskool1969:

    You clever bugger, Happy New Year my briney brother.

    Have a great new years mate as well too all pinsiders, pinheads (& surfers) and family

    1 week later
    #69 2 years ago

    got the angle brackets and ground the ridges off
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    these are to secure the table down the cnc frame to the bench top so I can flip up the table top - 13 in total (only bummer is that my hinge point is not out fair enough and when flipped up the z axis motor just rest against the wall, so needs another 50mm. For the moment it will stay down but will either make a stop to stop it from touching or move the hinge point but that is a bigger job now and too keen to get this running.
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    got a sheet of clean knot free ply for the waste board cut to size - just need to drill the holes to then secure to the frame and fit a heap of tee nuts for clamp points
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    also test fitted the router and vacuum pickup
    IMG_3781 (resized).JPG

    lastly finished all the brackets for the homing switches, drag chain mounts and clamps and waiting on those to be made
    https://www.shapeways.com/marketplace?q=swinksoxcnc&sort=newest

    also need to buy some 2 and 4 core shielded wire as the wire supplied is too short and shielded is a safe way to avoid glitches down the track and the supplied wires were too short and not shielded

    getting there, though a little more effort than original thought but fun

    #70 2 years ago

    Awesome man, looks like it's coming together!

    #71 2 years ago

    Should be an amazing set up. This will be fun for sure and your use of space is very well thought out. Cannot wait to see some chips flying.

    #72 2 years ago

    Noticing you're getting the X-Controller from xcarve. It does look like a nice package at this point (controller, power supply, e-stop, zprobe, homing switches) clearly labeled. Looks like it's running stock GRBL too so don't have to use easel but could. Wondering why more don't do it it.. I guess you could get all the parts for less but think there is something to getting a package like this with an enclosure.

    #73 2 years ago
    Quoted from sd_tom:

    Noticing you're getting the X-Controller from xcarve. It does look like a nice package at this point (controller, power supply, e-stop, zprobe, homing switches) clearly labeled. Looks like it's running stock GRBL too so don't have to use easel but could. Wondering why more don't do it it.. I guess you could get all the parts for less but think there is something to getting a package like this with an enclosure.

    on top of that the drivers are apparently a little more beefed up as well and correct about running GRBL and fan cooling in a neat robust package.

    #74 2 years ago

    Yep
    - (4) 4A stepper drivers (Y axis has 2 ganged drivers for X-Carve-type machines)

    And from q&a They say they use Toshiba TB6600 Drivers

    #75 2 years ago

    An alternative to easel is a raspberry pi running something like GRBLWeb.

    I don't like Easel so I don't use it at all.

    #76 2 years ago

    Yeah but I guess the point is, if you're getting started easel is there to get started with.

    Anyway since im becoming more on the fence about shaper as the weeks go on, was starting to look harder into ox builds and the multitude of controllers.. and their different firmware. With my 3d printing stuff it was Marlin on Ramps derived boards, way less 'flavors of the month' than these. To the point where getting the x-controller packed up, with a starter interface (easel) you know will work.. then can go shop around the GRBL interfaces from there is appealing to me anyway.

    Openbuilds has been leaking that they are working on a bunch of things for this year. A workbee kit (ooznest's newest offering), a Sphinx kit, and a new 'apex' controller. Interested to see those but sounds like Q2. In theory I should have shaper before then.

    #77 2 years ago
    Quoted from swinks:

    fit a heap of tee nuts for clamp points

    At techshop we just used plastic nails... Or brass wood screws. Easy to machine away

    #78 2 years ago
    Quoted from Zitt:

    At techshop we just used plastic nails... Or brass wood screws. Easy to machine away

    that's one I haven't heard of and an interesting approach and in a way better than hitting your cut on top side bolts / clamps

    #79 2 years ago

    Techshop used something like this:
    http://pinball.click/pnails

    Of suitable length. They also used several sheets of MDF for the bed; so it could be machined flat after several passes.

    #80 2 years ago
    Quoted from Zitt:

    Techshop used something like this:
    http://pinball.click/pnails
    Of suitable length. They also used several sheets of MDF for the bed; so it could be machined flat after several passes.

    interesting approach and thanks for the link....

    not a fan of mdf and once you machine the top, mdf will absorb moisture at a much faster rate and expand alot, so can be a bigger headache and the glues used are cancerous so staying away from mdf

    #81 2 years ago

    The thing about MDF is it machines really well; unlike plywood. Ply tends to split and tear when the top surface gets thin.
    You also have the problem of "voids" in the plywood that you don't have with MDF.

    I understand your MDF concern; just passing along the info I have.

    #82 2 years ago
    Quoted from Zitt:

    The thing about MDF is it machines really well; unlike plywood. Ply tends to split and tear when the top surface gets thin.
    You also have the problem of "voids" in the plywood that you don't have with MDF.
    I understand your MDF concern; just passing along the info I have.

    I agree with you as is good to machine but after some exposure and minor respiratory problems for a little while I vowed not to go near it nor promote it but thanks for giving it a little more info.

    Though in relation to plywood, if you get "clear" plywood you will not get knots and most of the time if you slow your feed down a little and have the right bit you will get good cuts from ply. As a alternative compressed styrofoam is a good waste board, stable and leveled easily and won't burr up.

    #83 2 years ago

    some more parts have arrived so hope to get a bit more done this week and documenting as I go which slows me down a little but hoping that it will help others alot, here is the new index with more sections now added. I intend to show cable lengths, wiring details so someone with no experience can follow the walk through.
    pasted_image (resized).png

    #84 2 years ago

    Update of stupidity 1 - do not buy 10 x 20mm internally measured drag chain. I purchased cable yesterday (original cable was too short) and though a tad larger in diameter than hoped but had limited choice and cut all my cables today was ready to go and "not gunna fit man" need 15 x 25 minimum but can get 15 x 30mm internally measured drag chain off ebay - so a slight delay and will muck up one my mounts to the machine but can adapt for the mean time.

    But the good thing is you and I can learn through my mistakes and you spend less $ than me

    3 weeks later
    #85 2 years ago

    This project has slowed up alot but only due to waiting on parts from the US that got lost in the post the day after they were dispatched and I had to wait 3 weeks to ensure they hadn't made it to me. I re-ordered the other day, and now be a few more weeks until the remainder of the wiring can be completed. New drag chain is in and fitted and so much better and brackets simplified and more affordable.

    The goal at the end of this project is to list the kits and then the individual parts in individual lists from each supplier so anyone that wants to build this machine can do it cutting down multiple orders and wasted money.

    chat in a few weeks time

    3 weeks later
    #86 1 year ago

    completed the wiring today and went to test and had a few small issues and then realised that I had a few motor wires the wrong way around as I am merging 2 different machines so no guidelines so was guessing. After some thinking and solving I made the corrections and machine was able to home in the correct direction on all 3 axis's.

    I did a test job in the air and it homed past the sensor so still have to solve that and check all my calibration settings in all axis's to determine accuracy but reached a stage that I am very happy to reach

    I will now update my manual to help others along the way if they choose to do the same, and I do have to make some minor changes to my homing brackets on Shapeways

    screen-capture (resized).png

    #87 1 year ago

    Nice work! Keep the updates coming!

    2 weeks later
    #88 1 year ago

    Don't mean to hijack the read, but have you had a chance to look at this?: http://www.maslowcnc.com/

    Wouldn't mind making a new cabinet, and this seems kind of interesting. Didn't see it in thread, apologies if I missed it. Could just cut by hand, but this seems kind of interesting and has a z-axis option...

    3 weeks later
    #89 1 year ago

    it has been a while, been flat out with work, too many projects helping people with parts etc, sick kids and life in general BUT currently in the calibration stage and have been developing a document (manual) at the same time capturing all the steps as things are a little different because it is a hybrid type of machine so a few differences in calibration which has led to trial and error. Good thing it will be documented and a easy process for anyone else wanting to go this path in the future.

    It has been driving around and doing air cuts though z axis still has a weird calibration / timing issue but reckon I am close to fine tuning.

    #90 1 year ago

    Thanks for the update. Keep 'em coming.

    #91 1 year ago

    well, finally solved my calibration issues as was on my own island for a bit due to building a hybrid machine but got it sorted, Z axis now running smooth and happy with it. this week at nights I will design a waste board file to drill all the t-nut holes and hopefully cut next week.

    got a heap of screen shots for the manual which I will start to fill up this week

    so it is still moving and soon be ready for insert hole trials and then bigger stuff.

    #92 1 year ago

    and also got a heap of really nice cutters of all different styles to trial and use for specific jobs from a Aussie Guy that is into bench cnc's and tests everything and is super helpful and the info grabbed (shown below) is from his site which I will plug into the manual. Hope the info is helpful and interesting. It has been a big and interesting learning curve.

    http://endmill.com.au/router-mills/

    Pine/ Hardwood/ MDF - a sharp up cut is more than fine to use and are the more economical option. Up cut does create a bit of a burr so it's ok to use when that is not an issue. A compression (up/down cut) bit is a great alternative when you are cutting all the way through or a down cut when you want to cut into your material or are not too fussed about a bottom finish.

    Plywood and Aluminium Composite - the go to for these materials are a compression or down cut bit. A compression bit cuts up through the material for the first 4mm and the rest is a down cut. A down cut does an equally great job by pushing the layers down rather than ripping up. Another great go to for plywood is a straight cut. These do not pull up or down and leave a great finish.

    Cast Acrylic - A sharp 1 flute or 2 flute up cut spiral bit ejects the chips well and are the go to.

    Aluminium - Stick to the End Mill section with an uncoated carbide bit.

    HDPE/ 2 ply colour ABS - for assured results a straight flute is recommended as well as an up cut. Just make sure your material is well secured when using an up cut bit.

    3D profiling - you have a choice of ball nose cutters with a long cutting length or tapered end mills

    Most of the mentioned mills are available in 1/8" (3.175mm), 4mm and 6mm shanks and range in sizes from 0.5mm up to 6mm and 3mm in length up to 32mm.

    2 months later
    #93 1 year ago

    It has been a while and the cnc is and has been up and running for a couple of weeks but life gets busy and holiday time:

    job 1 - router out it's own table top t-nut holes to fasten work down and opted to fasten a 600mm (24inch) square as my home point and also couples as calibration & squareness checker and holds my material square and at the home point.
    IMG_0075 (resized).JPG
    job 2 - daughter and I made a sign for her cubs group to get her Engineers badge
    IMG_4401 (resized).JPG

    everything is done and working well, and will get on to the manual so if anyone else wanted to venture down this path - hope to upload in the next 1-2 weeks

    5 months later
    #94 1 year ago

    @swinks, thanks for posting all of this info. I've just recently started thinking about getting a CNC kit and your posts helped me narrow in more quickly on something that will be suitable for me.

    What was the shipping costs like from Ooznest? I'm leaning towards their Workbee kit at the moment. I'm sure I could piece together something locally, but I do like to support companies that put a significant amount of time and effort into developing great documentation, videos, etc. Ooznest seems to do a fantastic job of that.

    #95 1 year ago

    Thanks gorgonzola

    I have almost narrowed down my project list and will update a how to manual soon, sorry to those wanting on my promises...

    When I first looked in to it, x-carve was my main focus because of the great support forum, but then came across the Ox CNC and found this company in Aus

    https://www.makerstore.com.au/product-category/kits/

    who had a good price but when comparing it to the Ooznest Ox CNC I preferred Ooznest because they had some upgrades that made it a little more rigid. Plus the owner was super helpful and saw places to upgrade the design instead of just selling a net available design. This is what it cost me, which for the extra $86 I was happy to get it from the UK. He was great in sending in a number of parcels to avoid the once $1000AUD import tax / gst. That might be an extra factor to consider. The workbee was still in development and finalisation when I got mine but that would be a good one to go for. I will try to get the manual finished soon and mine was the X-carve controller so I still can drive and operate like a x-carve and get the forum help other than a few minor programming setup inputs which I have documented.

    Hope that helps

    pasted_image (resized).png

    #96 1 year ago

    only advice is though I did my own drag chain and brackets etc, in hindsight I should of just got the kit from Ooznest, that was my main lesson learnt, send me a pm if you need more info

    #97 1 year ago

    I was checking out the maker store latest ox and it has v4 plates which is similar to the UK one so that is a good option now

    https://www.makerstore.com.au/product/ox-cnc-mechanical-kit-large/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIpdC9r7vO3wIVB6mWCh0EhAEeEAAYASAAEgLYh_D_BwE

    #98 1 year ago

    Thanks again @swinks. It's amazing how many options are out there, and comparing them can be quite the task! I'm looking at info on Ox CNC, Workbee, and Lead CNC now. Because I'm completely new to this, I will take your advice regarding getting a kit instead of sourcing everything myself.

    Do you have any experience cutting parts larger than the work area? For example, cutting a pinball cabinet side panel in 2 separate operations via tiling on a 1000x1000 machine? Ideally, I'd just get a 1500x1500 machine, but I like the idea of the lead screw based machines, however 1000x1000mm seems to be the limit for those.

    Are you aware of any nice guides that explains controller selection in more detail? Obviously full kits would include a controller suitable for the hardware supplied, but I don't yet understand how the controller affects what software can be used. Was your selection of the x-carve controller based on previous experience with the software, the community itself, or some other factors?

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