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  • Table top router/engraver

    I had to go to the post office today to pick up my new CNC machine. Bought it from Amazon. I also bought two other things with it. I'll explain further into the post. With all the snow we had the day before the mail carrier didn't want to chance to drive the 1/10 mile with two hills and ice to get to the house. Don't blame her. Two of the three packages fit in the mailbox the third as a bit too big.

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    So I'll go into the "why" toward the end. First let's see what's in the box.

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    These are all the pieces that come in the box. A complete gantry router/engraving machine. The Dewalt screw gun is there for size comparison. The machine weighs in at 7.5Kg or 16.5lbs. Made from all aluminum. The machine area size is 18.1 X 13.8 X 14.6 (469 X 350 X 370) Movement range for cutting or engraving is 11.8 X 7.1 X 1.8 (300 X 180 X 45) It use a 24-volt spindle motor rated at 80 watts. Software is called Grbl (Candle) Never heard of it till now but it uses G code. I'll find out more once I load the software and paly with it.

    So, lets assemble this little bugger and see what the completed machine looks like.

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    Not too bad for 16lb feather weight. Weighs less than my Sherline CNC which tips the scales at 70lbs. This is the front side. Let's spin it around and see what it looks like at the other end.

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    That's the manual controller with the bright screen. It's used to manually move the axes and turn on/off the spindle motor. I did buy a second motor rated a 20,000 RPM for the engraving tool. The machine comes with a 10,000RPM motor. I may use the second motor on the Sherline for grinding or engraving purposes.

    Here's some extra cutters I bought along with the machine.

    This first set looks like possible use on metal, wood, acrylic, plastic, PCB, etc.

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    This second set I think is strictly for wood from the looks of it. Probably could be used on aluminum or any other soft metal. As far as cutting steel on this machine, forget it. It's not ridged enough.

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    Note the fourth from the right is a bit short? Don't drop a carbide cutter this small from any height. You wind up with a shorter tool. It'll be reground into something that can be used on the lathe.

    Now one of two reasons I bought this machine. The first is I want to prove a point to some modelers. I bought the tool in the picture to use on the Sherline CNC mill.

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    Those of you who have been close to or own a Cricut Crafting & Cutting Machine know this is a Deep-Point Blade and Housing. I was going to originally make a holder for the Sherline to cut out styrene, cardboard, chip board or any other paper material. Like everything else, it got put away and I never completed the project or even started it. A week or so ago on another forum far far away in the state of Washington (MRH) there was a thread started asking about which of the crafting machines was the better to buy. I suggested this one and of course got told to pound rock salt. Not quite, but close. This is when I thought you know what? I'm going to get this machine and prove not only can you cut the material I mentioned previously but you can also engrave wood, metal and here's the bigly folks, this machine has two size laser that can be used with it. Talk about a versatile machine.

    So I plan on seeing if I can get it to cut with that blade. That's the first reason for purchasing the machine. The second is I need a faster spindle for engraving. I want to scratch build a East Broad Top caboose. I started one time on a TT scale version but never finished it because I had machine problems with the Sherline. I had to replace the lead screws. Which I did. Last year I finally bought ball screws for the mill. Still need to be installed. The other reason for the purchase is the fact it has a larger surface area for engraving. An example use would be to engrave scale 3" wide boards into brass caboose sides and then cut those sides out. It could be done the mill, but the spindle motor just isn't fast enough. My other thought is I'm going to try and see if I can make corrugated siding. I have an idea that might work.

    So, hopefully we'll see some progress with this machine, the engine house (I finally got more wire), and if my idea works out some corrugated sheets.

    For those that are curious about this machine there is plenty of info on the net about this machine. Here's the link to the Comgrow company that makes the machine: https://www.comgrow.com/products/com...39423701549099

    There are also many videos on You Tube. I also joined a group on FB just to see what kind of modelers (?) naw, people use these machines. It's comical reading some of the things these people think they can do with a 16.5 lb machine. It's quite obvious they've never been near a large production machine. But you can't blame them.

    Until next time.

    Bernd
    New York, Vermont & Northern Rwy. - Route of the Black Diamonds

    Main thread to all that's happening on the NY,V & N Rwy. The New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy. - Railroad Line Forums (railroad-line.com)

    New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy HOn30 Quarry Line https://railroad-line.com/node/31167

  • #2
    I'll be watching this with great interest!

    dave
    Modeling 1890s (because the voices in my head told me to)

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    • #3
      Subscribed!
      Mark from Illinois

      Comment


      • #4
        So the manual off line controller works good. No problems there. After I posted this I got into the software. At this point I think it's going to be a nightmare. As with everything from China, it's Chinglish and sparse on detail. I've watched a few videos but they move through so fast you have no idea what the heck is going on or what they're even doing.

        I plan on hooking it up to the computer tomorrow and see if I can figure it out. I'll give more detail as I go.

        Stay tuned.

        Bernd
        New York, Vermont & Northern Rwy. - Route of the Black Diamonds

        Main thread to all that's happening on the NY,V & N Rwy. The New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy. - Railroad Line Forums (railroad-line.com)

        New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy HOn30 Quarry Line https://railroad-line.com/node/31167

        Comment


        • #5
          Bernd,

          I was going to do a GRBL connection to my CNC mill and already having MACH3, I opted for a MACH3 -> USB controller. which was painless. What servos are on that router, NEMA 17's? Probably will do a nice job of engraving cutting brass shim stock.

          Jim
          Take the red pill

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          • #6
            I just love the smell of new tools in the morning. I know your mind is working over time and I can't wait to see the results.

            John

            GULF COAST & WESTERN

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            • #7
              Originally posted by BurleyJim View Post
              Bernd,

              I was going to do a GRBL connection to my CNC mill and already having MACH3, I opted for a MACH3 -> USB controller. which was painless. What servos are on that router, NEMA 17's? Probably will do a nice job of engraving cutting brass shim stock.

              Jim
              I was frustrated after working on the software that comes with the machine when I wrote the last post. This morning I went back on y-tube to replay a video of an oriental girl and her brother that did a video on this machine. This time I listened a bit more closely. At one point in the video she does a Fusion 360 drawing and exports the G-code onto the sim card and plugs it into the machine directly. That's when I had the Ah Ha moment. It doesn't need to be hooked up to the computer to run. The g-code needs to be loaded to the computer on board which she says is an Arduino. So when the light bulb went from almost non-existence to blindingly light I realized I don't need my computer hooked to the router. It works the same way the Sherline does. I already have all the software to create the G-code. Remember Jim I mentioned one time I'm using CamBam for my DXF to G-code program. I can't find what NEMA motors are on there but here's the spec of the motors: 1.3A, 12V, 0.48 Nm Torque (4.25 in ~ lb)



              Here's the portion of the video where I got the AhHa moment: I'm also impressed that she has got 360 knowledge while still going to school.

              So I'm off to see if I can get the same results. I'll post after I have a successful test of the new toy.

              Later.

              Bernd
              New York, Vermont & Northern Rwy. - Route of the Black Diamonds

              Main thread to all that's happening on the NY,V & N Rwy. The New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy. - Railroad Line Forums (railroad-line.com)

              New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy HOn30 Quarry Line https://railroad-line.com/node/31167

              Comment


              • #8
                Ok, that video didn't start at the point I picked. It's at approx. 5 min. into the video.

                Bernd
                New York, Vermont & Northern Rwy. - Route of the Black Diamonds

                Main thread to all that's happening on the NY,V & N Rwy. The New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy. - Railroad Line Forums (railroad-line.com)

                New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy HOn30 Quarry Line https://railroad-line.com/node/31167

                Comment


                • #9
                  now thats what im talking about !!!!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Ok, the update. We have lift off.

                    First though I need to show these pictures. Any of you guys with sausage fingers will have a problem with this.

                    Picture of the manual controller.

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                    This is the slot for the simm card on top.

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                    For those that don't know what a simm card is. It's equivalent to a thumb drive only smaller and it goes in the slot.

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                    There was disappointment at first. I took the window file I had originally done for the Sherline. I copied it to the simm card and placed it in the little slot. Called up the file on the controller and got loaded and ran it. The machine hardly moved and when it did there was no "Z" axis at all. Talk about your heart dropping to the floor. Then I remembered the simm card that came with the software had a test file on it. I loaded that and the machine did its thing just like it should. Then it hit me, the machine is not bilingual, what? Ya it only speaks millimeters not inches. My program for the Sherline was in inches and the test program was in millimeters. So off to the computer to make the window file metric. I actually had to redraw the drawing and go through all the work to make a metric G-code file. Got that done. Loaded it into the machine crossed everything I could and let her riip. SUCCESS. It ran through the motions just like the Sherline. Looks like I'm on my way with this little bugger.

                    Now I just got to get my other computer working again. It just died on me while I'm typing here. CRAP.

                    Later.

                    Bernd
                    New York, Vermont & Northern Rwy. - Route of the Black Diamonds

                    Main thread to all that's happening on the NY,V & N Rwy. The New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy. - Railroad Line Forums (railroad-line.com)

                    New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy HOn30 Quarry Line https://railroad-line.com/node/31167

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Bernd,

                      If this was me doing this... you know that I wouldn't get past the manual before giving up entirely.
                      But with all of your knowledge, I'm sure you can pull it off and produce excellent results.
                      I hope you continue to succeed.

                      Rich

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                      • #12
                        Way to go Bernd! Metric is your friend. A SEMA 17 servo measures about 42.5 mm across the flats.

                        Jim
                        Take the red pill

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Looking on with great interest Bernd.
                          Carl

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Pennman View Post
                            Bernd,

                            If this was me doing this... you know that I wouldn't get past the manual before giving up entirely.
                            But with all of your knowledge, I'm sure you can pull it off and produce excellent results.
                            I hope you continue to succeed.

                            Rich
                            Problem is there was no manual. It was more a colored brochure with very little information. Knowledge is dangerous.

                            I pulled it off and succeed. Even got the my main computers drive back up an running. All I did was threaten to pull it's guts out and wrap them around the case.

                            Bernd
                            Last edited by Bernd; 02-05-2022, 09:57 PM.
                            New York, Vermont & Northern Rwy. - Route of the Black Diamonds

                            Main thread to all that's happening on the NY,V & N Rwy. The New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy. - Railroad Line Forums (railroad-line.com)

                            New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy HOn30 Quarry Line https://railroad-line.com/node/31167

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by BurleyJim View Post
                              Way to go Bernd! Metric is your friend. A SEMA 17 servo measures about 42.5 mm across the flats.

                              Jim
                              Did I tell you I HATE METRIC. Now I'll have to use my calculator. The easy part is the CAD software all the way to the G-code is done on the computer. I just got to tell it how long or round it's got be. Now that I know what the little China man needs I can tell him. I just need to figure out how to setup the origin point were to start from. More adventure to come as I learn about these router machines. Probably get the laser some where down the line. Always wanted a laser cutter. That's what kind of sold me on this model.

                              Bernd
                              New York, Vermont & Northern Rwy. - Route of the Black Diamonds

                              Main thread to all that's happening on the NY,V & N Rwy. The New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy. - Railroad Line Forums (railroad-line.com)

                              New York, Vermont -and- Northern Rwy HOn30 Quarry Line https://railroad-line.com/node/31167

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                              • BurleyJim
                                BurleyJim commented
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