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 Post subject: Anyone here DIY'd a CNC mill?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 14, 2010 5:07 pm 

Joined: Tue Apr 13, 2010 9:54 pm
Posts: 7
A machinist friend of mine recently acquired a brand-new and unused Bridgeport mill, complete with 2-axis CNC setup. There's a very good reason for it being unused - while the hardware is of very good quality, the early Proto-Trak software used had a nasty habit of crashing and boring a hole in the mill. There are two DC motors with belt drives and ballscrews on the X and Y axes, and he's pretty sure he could easily mount a geared motor on the Z axis (he is a machinist, after all), but he's very much lost on how he might connect his mill to a more modern control system like EMC. Is anyone familiar with such a thing?

I should probably mention that the machinist in question is on a very limited budget...but if anyone were to obtain the required hardware for him, he'd be happy to machine just about anything you could imagine in return. Like, say....another CNC machine. :)


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 Post subject: Re: Anyone here DIY'd a CNC mill?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 14, 2010 8:55 pm 
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Joined: Tue Feb 23, 2010 4:47 pm
Posts: 21
Location: Eastside Madison
My neighbor and I just finished (it's never finished) my second emc integration, which I presented last week at the sector 67 meetup. I also work on cnc machine tools fo my job, and I'd be happy to help on such a project.

Do you know if the motors have servo amplifiers already? That's the biggest remaining cost for a system like that. I'd predict the pc and basic interfacing hardware could be had in the sub $200 range, though I'd have to see the current motors to be sure.

Where is the bridgeport currently?

I'm available most Monday evenings to discuss and work on such a thing.


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 Post subject: Re: Anyone here DIY'd a CNC mill?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 17, 2010 3:23 pm 

Joined: Tue Apr 13, 2010 9:54 pm
Posts: 7
I have some pictures, and will hopefully have them up shortly. The system does include servo amplifiers, though the manufacturer has not been willing to provide information on them. The mill in question is just outside of Milwaukee.

I'd be happy to meet this Monday, or perhaps another time. Thanks for the help!


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 Post subject: Re: Anyone here DIY'd a CNC mill?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 12:30 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 8:44 pm
Posts: 12
Location: Madison Wi
I've converted a mini mill for personal use,but I'm still new to metal work
(My professional experience is in 2.5D and custom machines.)
I looked at buying a Bridgeport and eliminated it for financial reasons.
You're friend can find a lot of information for the z axis conversion at cnczone.com's brigeport forum.

As far as software I've worked on emc2, turbocnc and mach3 for controllers.
I like emc2 myself but found mach3 in windows easier for most operators.

let me know what you find about the hardware. I can trade and 500 mhz computer, crt monitor, 270 oz nema23 stepper and breakout board for a mill project to be named.

I'm in and out of town most of this week.
good luck
Charle


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 Post subject: Re: Anyone here DIY'd a CNC mill?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 27, 2010 7:22 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 8:44 pm
Posts: 12
Location: Madison Wi
Hi, I did some house cleaning and an upgrade to my mills computer.
( I decided I needed hulu in my shop when I'm not cutting)

I now have an extra 1.5 GHZ pc computer with 120 gig hard drive and xp licence.

I Also found a spare modio that can control mill accessories and spindle speed.
http://homanndesigns.com/store/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=4

Let me know if your project goes forward. I'm Willing to trade if the hardware helps.


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