Greolt's Aussie build

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Greolt's Aussie build

Postby Greolt » Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:50 am

Over a number of years I have been involved in building and operating CNC machines. Using Mach3 as controller.

Presently I have a CNC router, a retrofitted CNC milling machine and a small desktop engraver/router.

On several occasions over those years I have thought about building a laser cutter. Well this time those thoughts turned into action.

Done a lot of reading on this forum. I have read just about every build log. A wealth of information.

I very much admire Bart's effort in designing a laser that is easy to build for those with limited workshop resources and experience.

However something a bit bigger was on my wish list and the aluminium tee slot extrusion is expensive in Australia.

Had a heap of steel square tubing on hand, left over from another project, so I decided on a welded frame. A lot more work but my time is free.

My experience building CNC machines has taught me that the linear bearings are one of the most critical components.

Many hours are spent building these machines and I strongly believe that good linear bearings are worth the expense when weighed against time invested.

They are the heart of a good machine. So I will be using Hiwin 15mm square rails on the Y and a Hiwin 15mm miniature rail on the X.

A few design criteria are;

1, Completely self contained. Water cooling, exhaust fan, air assist compressor, all within the cabinet.

2, Electronics in a separate section away from smoke etc.

3, Laser tube and first mirror in a separate enclosure on the back of the cabinet, also away from the smoke.

4, Rise and fall table which will allow enough room for a rotary axis, operated with a stepper motor utilising belt drive connecting vertical screws.

5, Full access from the top and front. I have read comments that lasers can be a bit of a dark cave.

6, Removable panels on one end and the back for possible larger items. (probably never remove them)

I was on vacation recently and had lots of time to fill, so I modelled my ideas in CAD. Below is the result.

Some panels are not shown for clarity. Lid and front door also not shown.

Greg

CAD model.jpg
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Re: Greolt's Aussie build

Postby Greolt » Sun Jan 15, 2012 11:21 am

Purchased mirror mounts and head from CNCOLETEC. 25mm mirrors and 20mm lens 68mm focal length.

60w power supply.

10 turn 5k pot with dial counter.

30ma ammeter

80w RECI industrial laser tube from CNCOLETEC

XL belt and pulleys from Econobelt.

Hiwin linear rails and bearings.

6" inline exhaust fan.

Things I have already on hand from collecting during past machine builds,

Stepper motors, stepper motor drives (Gecko), cable chain, 48v stepper power supply, air compressor, water pump, lots of steel and aluminium.

Greg

Head and mirrors.jpg


Power Supply front.jpg


Yube Output End.jpg
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Re: Greolt's Aussie build

Postby Greolt » Sun Jan 15, 2012 11:43 am

X axis.jpg
X axis nearly finished.


Mirror2.jpg
Mirror end with adjustable idler pulley for X axis belt.


Stepper side.jpg
Stepper motor end. After testing I decided to change this to a Nema23 size stepper rather than the Nema17 which this mount is for.


Head.jpg
Head and cable chain.
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Re: Greolt's Aussie build

Postby Greolt » Sun Jan 15, 2012 11:54 am

A youtube video of some initial testing I did on the X axis performance.

I was happy with the speed (120 metre a min or 2 metres a seccond) but not the acceleration. So I have since changed the Nema17 for Nema23 motor. 64oz up to 155oz.

Have not had a chance to redo the test, but I expect the acceleration will be substantially better.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S6yB8eCWKtc
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Re: Greolt's Aussie build

Postby Greolt » Sun Jan 15, 2012 11:59 am

Made a start on the cabinet skeleton.

Could not help but temporarily mount the X and Y to see what it would look like.

Still lots more work to do on this part of the build.

Notice the completely open front. No cross brace. Combination lid and front door to go there.

Frame skeleton 1.jpg


Frame skeleton 2.jpg
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Re: Greolt's Aussie build

Postby J45on » Sun Jan 15, 2012 12:59 pm

Very impressive I'm watching with great interest :D
I have also been watching your you tube videos and would love to see more of your CNC machine
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Re: Greolt's Aussie build

Postby educa » Sun Jan 15, 2012 1:55 pm

A few questions.

I am also building a machine like that, but what linear rail are you using on the X axis?

I use THK RSR20 rails with ball bearing carriage, but I see you mount your rail sideways.
Is that ok for the torque on those carriages? If I would be able to mount my rail sideways, then this would simplify things a lot actually.

Also what belt and what pulleys do you use?

And how thick are your metal profiles? I suppose its steel ?
I intend to use 35x35mm or 45x45mm aluminium extrusions.

35mm = 1.38" and 45mm = 1.77"

sideways mounting would make life a lot easier on the X axis.
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Re: Greolt's Aussie build

Postby lovebugjunkie » Sun Jan 15, 2012 2:08 pm

Impressive, I'm really liking your frame. What will be your cutting area?

If you are the same Greolt that is on the cnczone, going by your post I have read on the zone over the years, this will be a very nice machine when completed.
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Re: Greolt's Aussie build

Postby Greolt » Mon Jan 16, 2012 2:31 am

educa wrote:I am also building a machine like that, but what linear rail are you using on the X axis?

I use THK RSR20 rails with ball bearing carriage, but I see you mount your rail sideways.
Is that ok for the torque on those carriages? If I would be able to mount my rail sideways, then this would simplify things a lot actually.


X axis is Hiwin miniature series MG 15mm. It has only two rows of balls instead of the usual four rows, as in the HG 15mm standard series, which I used on the Y axis.

In this application we only load the bearings to a small fraction of what they can carry, so mount them any way you want. Just get the alignment very precise so they run free.

Also what belt and what pulleys do you use?


I used XL 0.2" pitch, because the Retina Engrave controller needs 1000 steps per inch. I have not as yet decided what controller I will end up using.

I hate using old medieval measurements but thought it was prudent to go imperial in case I use Retina Engrave.

Greolt
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Re: Greolt's Aussie build

Postby StigOE » Mon Jan 16, 2012 7:50 am

Greolt wrote:I used XL 0.2" pitch, because the Retina Engrave controller needs 1000 steps per inch.

I believe FSE has changed their program to be a little more accomodating to DIY so you don't need exactly 1000steps per inch anymore.

Stig
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