Yes, you read that right: V1.0! Since my first prototype back in December 2015 which moved a dremel along the XYZ directions but had a resolution of 5mm (!!!), I rebuild the CNC machine completely and some parts rebuilt for a 3rd time. But the result is great; the resolution is now in the micrometer range!
My last iteration involved rebuilding the YZ assembly. The previous assembly still had wooden plates on which the linear bearings were attached with wood screws. This simply wasn’t rigid enough and the new assembly uses aluminium plates and proper nuts and bolts.
There are still lots of improvements I’m planning to make:
- the Nema 17 stepper motors are not quite strong enough and I will replace them by Nema 23;
- Although the Y-mount is made of multiplex wood, it is very rigid. But wood seems wrong so I will replace it by an aluminium plate and bracket;
- The chassis itself is also wood and works perfectly OK. I might replace this by a steel chassis;
- The cabling is messy and I will redo this with proper wires, cables and cable runners.
- I might replace the electronic boards (5 in all) by a TinyG controller which is all in one.
But … as it is, V1.0 is now a reality and I finally start using the CNC for what it is designed for. I’m now getting to grips using Fusion 360 which is a professional CAD/CAM system by AutoDesk. There is a short learning curve which is fine as I’m designing ideas in my head first. That is my biggest design and workshop. My head.