CNC

My next venture will be to build a cnc Mill.
This, as with the other projects, will be done with 3D printed parts, not sure if this is going to be suitable because of the weight involved.
So far, I have designed all the parts, and they will be printed as soon as the printer is up and running again, had a power surge which knocked out the electronic.
On the subject of Electronics, I will use the same system as the Laser engraver, along with larger Stepper Motors, and drivers. The rails and bearings will be a lot more robust.
I have put together most of the required components, just a matter on waiting to fix the printer, next week ,hopefully.

Laser engraver

Some time ago I read an Instructible on building a Laser engraver, and decided to build one for myself, so that I could make stencils for my Airbrushing.
I did follower certain aspects of the original, I did make many changes, mainly to suit the tools available to me, the main one being the 3D printer, every part that could be made this way, was, the hardware I had to buy.
All up cost was about $250.00.
Already having the experience of building the 3D printer help a lot, I was able to avoid all the little mishaps I had.
For the electronics, I used a Raspberry Pi developer board, and a board called a Pihat developed by Protoneer, the software was linux, and QRBL..
The first laser module bought on Ebay proved to be unsuitable, so I got one from Belguim, a 200watt this works very well.

3D printing

My Printer.

My Printer.

This is My Printer.

I bought this as a kit from Sintron on ebay at a cost of $500. must say I was not real happy with it, it came with no build instructions, and no links where I could find any. Though they did correspond  via email, the help there was fair.

The building was fairly straight forward, but the setting up was a pain, leveling the bed was the first problem I struck, no matter how I tried I could not make it even, found that the acrylic platform was warped, so I replaced it with an aluminum one, problem solved.

Next in line was the stop ends no matter how I tried I could not get these set properly, they just kept shifting, they ended up snapping, so I had to come up with an idea of my own, the Z axis endstop needed to be adjustable, another problem fixed. but there’s more.

Next, the filament kept jamming in the extruder,( this feeds the filament to the hot end) took a while to figure out this one, it turned out that the hotend ( the bit that melts the filament) was screwed into the extruder to far and it was touching the bearing.

Finally got a reasonable print, not yet perfect, but close.

I am intending to change a few things which I think will improve the whole set up, I will be changing the extruder and it’s support bracket, and some spare bits,  at an extra cost of $100.

will add an image later when finished.

Update 17/09/2015.

Have finished all my additions for now, but one never knows what happens down the line.
Changes I have made so far.
1) the acrylic Y axis base plate changed to an aluminium one.
2) All three stopends rebuilt and fitted the Z axis was made to be adjustable.
3) The X axis carriage changed from the original 3D printed one to an aluminium one, much more robust, and looks much better, the printed one always leaned in a very acute angle.
4) Printed a cover for the LCD screen, more for cosmetics really.
5) Made and adjustable base to keep things on an even keel.
6) Change the 3D printed frame supports for home made Aluminium ones.

So far, the prints have turned out very well as you will see from the images.Extruder X carraige

My printer

30/11/15. More problems have arisen in a very short period of time, the Extruder played up, then the power supply stopped,( cheap Chinese junk.
I have replaced this with a computer power supply, after a little rework.
I have on order, a new hotend and extruder, a different type altogether, will see how it all goes once it all arrives.
The company named above who I bought the kit from, was very good at answering emails before things started to break down, then nothing, so I would be avoiding this company if I was you.
18/12/15.
And still the problems keep coming, bought some new control boards only to find they where faulty, so have got a refund, and have ordered some more from elsewhere. The new extruder and hotend arrived and have been fitted.
will add another image when and if I can get it working again.
18?01/2017.
A lot of changes have occurred in the last two years.
The New extruder setup worked a real treat, I ended up using a Wade type with an ED6 lite hotend.
The 5mm Z axis rods I have changed to 8mm lead rods, they now work very smoothly.
All the 3D printed parts haxe been remade.
Other additions, are a bed leveling probe, some remodelling of the bed to aid heating, surround lights.
In also added a fitting to alow the filament reels to fit above the printer, this has proved to be a gog send.
The most useful addition has been the touch screen control tablet by Matter Hackers, and also a Bluetooth Keyboard.
Sofar everything is working very smoothly.
10/05/2018.
I am in the process of completely rebuilding the printer.
So far I have built a complete new frame, that will accommodate a much larger build plate, overall the bed is 330 X 330 mm.
I am at present using most of the original printed parts, but have redesigned them, these will be added later, along with possibly dual extruders.
To take up the extra weight I have changed the X axis rods from 8mm to 10mm.
Still have a way to go before it is printing, this is due to waiting for new parts.
I will add images once it is completed.

Take no notice of the ratsnest of wires at the top, this is only temporary, as after all the new parts are printed, these will be all replaced along with the extruder.
The tablet is what controls it all.
12/05.2018.
cut up some mirror for the heat plate.
Endstops should arrive Mondaty the 14th.
Will pick up a soldering iron strong enough to fix cables to heat bed tomorrow, them come Monday they should be fitted in place.
Will use wing nuts for temporary adjustment screws, until the proper nuts arrive.
I may have to at some time change the Y axis motor to a nema23, there is quite a bit of weight for the Nema17, that’s already in place.