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yyrkoon

Personal CNC PCB routers

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This is what we ended up getting: http://www.ebay.com/itm/like/262624817100?lpid=82&chn=ps&ul_noapp=true or, something very similar. We're still not sure if we'll use it for many PCB's, but we do want it for various other milling jobs.

 

Now as for the pick and place machine . . . my buddy decided to make his own, and it'll be huge for a DiY pick and place machine. He's already started to amass parts for it, and assembling it somewhat.

 

We've got it setup with Mach3, and have done a few dry(demo) runs with it so far. Needed a lot of work to get it functional, and setup properly . . . 

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You'll have a lot of fun with that. Definitely try PCBs and let us know how you get on.

 

The 5 axes might be overkill. The problem is that software to make proper use of more than 3 axes is complicated and expensive. Swapping one linear axis for a rotational one and engraving on a cylinder is easy enough.

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You'll have a lot of fun with that. Definitely try PCBs and let us know how you get on.

 

The 5 axes might be overkill. The problem is that software to make proper use of more than 3 axes is complicated and expensive. Swapping one linear axis for a rotational one and engraving on a cylinder is easy enough.

Well, the mill comes with a full copy Mach3 licensed. No idea if that does 5 axis or not. Honestly I have no played with any of it yet. Only made a few observations about various config options, to get it working. What I will personally be doing is setting up a Linux image to do the same thing. Using Linux CNC, and another tool I can not think of offhand that generates G code(BlenderCNC maybe ? ). But I know nothing about any of that, so it'll take me a while to figure all that out. While my buddy, and another friend will mess around with Mach 3, they'll probably run it live on a piece of junk wood or 3 before they even attempt to try it on a PCB. Then, we'll also mess around with Aluminum. Maybe make an rPI case or something. Just to get used  to the mill.

 

@@Fred

 

By the way, that spindle has an option for water cooling, and i you noticed the lexan "tub" around the table. It's also meant to mill while the part is submerged in water. If the user so wishes.

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By the way, that spindle has an option for water cooling, and i you noticed the lexan "tub" around the table. It's also meant to mill while the part is submerged in water. If the user so wishes.

 

For typical 3d milling I've had great success with Fusion 360 (free for hobbyists and small <$100K/yr startups) (windows only) for creating G-code. You'll then need to feed that G-code into Mach-3 to actually run your machine.

 

I doubt having the part submerged in water is a good idea. (also tub doesn't look big enough) From my understanding coolant's main purpose it to extract heat as-well as remove chips from the cutting area. A submersed part will not aid with the chip evacuation.

 

Lastly I believe that the spindle will require water cooling, but that is a completely separate cooling loop from the part coolant. This is purely to cool the spindle motor itself.

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For typical 3d milling I've had great success with Fusion 360 (free for hobbyists and small <$100K/yr startups) (windows only) for creating G-code. You'll then need to feed that G-code into Mach-3 to actually run your machine.

 

I doubt having the part submerged in water is a good idea. (also tub doesn't look big enough) From my understanding coolant's main purpose it to extract heat as-well as remove chips from the cutting area. A submersed part will not aid with the chip evacuation.

 

Lastly I believe that the spindle will require water cooling, but that is a completely separate cooling loop from the part coolant. This is purely to cool the spindle motor itself.

take a close look at the mill. The mill head has coolant ports.

 

As for the tub, it'll work fine to keep fiberglass out of our breathing air.

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pcb-gcode for use with Eagle would by my first suggestion.

I do not think anything Eagle is going to be an option. My buddy uses Orcad, and refuses to use Eagle, or any of the "cheap" layout / design software. Me, I wont be using Eagle either. I do not layout, or design PCB's. What I will be doing is using something like Fusion 360, for modeling. If Blender can be used ( Blender CNC ) I may go that route, and design object / parts in Blender, then perhaps convert to Blender CNC if that is an option. We'll see . . .

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I personally Haven't used it on my router, but I've installed it and looked around, FlatCam might be a good choice, Takes PCB gerbers directly (Can use any EDA tool) And it generates isolation tracks around your copper in G-code.

 

Cross platform too! http://flatcam.org/

So, apparently my buddy has been trying to get this to work for around a week now. Something about it seeming to work fine, but it doesn't generate some kind of file for his drill. But it generates all other other files, such as for the board, etc just fine.

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