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Which wax waxes witches worse?

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  • Tom Wade
    Have had a Unimat for about 50 years. Have had a Sherline mill for about 6 years. The Unimat has just been retired and replaced with a Sherline lathe.
    Message 1 of 16 , Nov 1, 2009
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      Have had a Unimat for about 50 years. Have had a Sherline mill for about 6 years. The Unimat has just been retired and replaced with a Sherline lathe.

      Tomorrow UPS is supposed to deliver my Sherline cnc kit.

      Was thinking that a good way to start learning G code would be to start carving on a block of wax, or something similar. This would be cheaper than throwing away failed block of aluminum or brass, for instance, and could possibly even be recycled into new blocks of wax.

      Anyone got any ideas of what kind of locally available material might be useful for this purpose?

      Although I have a tiny bit of macheing knowlege, I'm a complete noob at CAD. So, any suggestions as to which freeware or cheapware CAD software might be best for a beginner? I don't envision doing any complex 3D type parts in the near future.

      Thanks

      Tom Wade
      Hope, Indiana


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Ron Ginger
      ... Machineable wax is great, but kind of expensive. I have heard you can collect the chips and re-melt it that might save a bit. I use MDF. You can get a
      Message 2 of 16 , Nov 1, 2009
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        > Was thinking that a good way to start learning G code would be to start carving on a block of wax, or something similar. This would be cheaper than throwing away failed block of aluminum or brass, for instance, and could possibly even be recycled into new blocks of wax.
        >
        > Anyone got any ideas of what kind of locally available material might be useful for this purpose?
        >
        >
        > Tom Wade
        > Hope, Indiana
        >

        Machineable wax is great, but kind of expensive. I have heard you can
        collect the chips and re-melt it that might save a bit.

        I use MDF. You can get a 2x4ft sheet from Home Depot for just a few
        dollars. Is a pretty fine material and holds edges and sizes well. It i
        dusty to cut and may be a bit abrasive on cutters. I just used a piece
        to make the pattern for a casting for a nameplate for a 2ft loco Ive
        been helping rebuild.

        Just the other day I heard you can buy Bondo, or any similar body putty
        and cast it into blocks which supposedly cut as well as some of the
        special machinable plastic materials. I have not tried it, but I have
        used tons of the stuff as fillers and it does cut and sand well.

        ron ginger
      • Tom Wade
        Thanks, Ron Tom ... From: Ron Ginger To: SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com Sent: Sunday, November 01, 2009 9:14 AM Subject: [SherlineCNC] Re: Which wax waxes witches
        Message 3 of 16 , Nov 1, 2009
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          Thanks, Ron

          Tom


          ----- Original Message -----
          From: Ron Ginger
          To: SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Sunday, November 01, 2009 9:14 AM
          Subject: [SherlineCNC] Re: Which wax waxes witches worse?



          > Was thinking that a good way to start learning G code would be to start carving on a block of wax, or something similar. This would be cheaper than throwing away failed block of aluminum or brass, for instance, and could possibly even be recycled into new blocks of wax.
          >
          > Anyone got any ideas of what kind of locally available material might be useful for this purpose?
          >
          >
          > Tom Wade
          > Hope, Indiana
          >

          Machineable wax is great, but kind of expensive. I have heard you can
          collect the chips and re-melt it that might save a bit.

          I use MDF. You can get a 2x4ft sheet from Home Depot for just a few
          dollars. Is a pretty fine material and holds edges and sizes well. It i
          dusty to cut and may be a bit abrasive on cutters. I just used a piece
          to make the pattern for a casting for a nameplate for a 2ft loco Ive
          been helping rebuild.

          Just the other day I heard you can buy Bondo, or any similar body putty
          and cast it into blocks which supposedly cut as well as some of the
          special machinable plastic materials. I have not tried it, but I have
          used tons of the stuff as fillers and it does cut and sand well.

          ron ginger




          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • R.L. Wurdack
          Not local, but Grizzly now sells wax. D. ... From: Tom Wade To: SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com Sent: Saturday, October 31, 2009 11:45 PM Subject: [SherlineCNC]
          Message 4 of 16 , Nov 1, 2009
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            Not local, but Grizzly now sells wax.

            D.
            ----- Original Message -----
            From: Tom Wade
            To: SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Saturday, October 31, 2009 11:45 PM
            Subject: [SherlineCNC] Which wax waxes witches worse?


            Have had a Unimat for about 50 years. Have had a Sherline mill for about 6 years. The Unimat has just been retired and replaced with a Sherline lathe.

            Tomorrow UPS is supposed to deliver my Sherline cnc kit.

            Was thinking that a good way to start learning G code would be to start carving on a block of wax, or something similar. This would be cheaper than throwing away failed block of aluminum or brass, for instance, and could possibly even be recycled into new blocks of wax.

            Anyone got any ideas of what kind of locally available material might be useful for this purpose?

            Although I have a tiny bit of macheing knowlege, I'm a complete noob at CAD. So, any suggestions as to which freeware or cheapware CAD software might be best for a beginner? I don't envision doing any complex 3D type parts in the near future.

            Thanks

            Tom Wade
            Hope, Indiana

            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]





            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • R.L. Wurdack
            BTW, the MSDS on MDF says don t breathe the dust. (It s probably a good rule to never breathe any kind of dust, but I thought I d just mention it.) D. ...
            Message 5 of 16 , Nov 1, 2009
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              BTW, the MSDS on MDF says don't breathe the dust. (It's probably a good rule to never breathe any kind of dust, but I thought I'd just mention it.)

              D.


              ----- Original Message -----
              From: Ron Ginger
              To: SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com
              Sent: Sunday, November 01, 2009 6:14 AM
              Subject: [SherlineCNC] Re: Which wax waxes witches worse?



              > Was thinking that a good way to start learning G code would be to start carving on a block of wax, or something similar. This would be cheaper than throwing away failed block of aluminum or brass, for instance, and could possibly even be recycled into new blocks of wax.
              >
              > Anyone got any ideas of what kind of locally available material might be useful for this purpose?
              >
              >
              > Tom Wade
              > Hope, Indiana
              >

              Machineable wax is great, but kind of expensive. I have heard you can
              collect the chips and re-melt it that might save a bit.

              I use MDF. You can get a 2x4ft sheet from Home Depot for just a few
              dollars. Is a pretty fine material and holds edges and sizes well. It i
              dusty to cut and may be a bit abrasive on cutters. I just used a piece
              to make the pattern for a casting for a nameplate for a 2ft loco Ive
              been helping rebuild.

              Just the other day I heard you can buy Bondo, or any similar body putty
              and cast it into blocks which supposedly cut as well as some of the
              special machinable plastic materials. I have not tried it, but I have
              used tons of the stuff as fillers and it does cut and sand well.

              ron ginger




              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Tom Wade
              Glad you mentioned the dust... Tom ... From: R.L. Wurdack To: SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com Sent: Sunday, November 01, 2009 9:59 AM Subject: Re: [SherlineCNC]
              Message 6 of 16 , Nov 1, 2009
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                Glad you mentioned the dust...

                Tom


                ----- Original Message -----
                From: R.L. Wurdack
                To: SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com
                Sent: Sunday, November 01, 2009 9:59 AM
                Subject: Re: [SherlineCNC] Re: Which wax waxes witches worse?


                BTW, the MSDS on MDF says don't breathe the dust. (It's probably a good rule to never breathe any kind of dust, but I thought I'd just mention it.)

                D.

                ----- Original Message -----
                From: Ron Ginger
                To: SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com
                Sent: Sunday, November 01, 2009 6:14 AM
                Subject: [SherlineCNC] Re: Which wax waxes witches worse?

                > Was thinking that a good way to start learning G code would be to start carving on a block of wax, or something similar. This would be cheaper than throwing away failed block of aluminum or brass, for instance, and could possibly even be recycled into new blocks of wax.
                >
                > Anyone got any ideas of what kind of locally available material might be useful for this purpose?
                >
                >
                > Tom Wade
                > Hope, Indiana
                >

                Machineable wax is great, but kind of expensive. I have heard you can
                collect the chips and re-melt it that might save a bit.

                I use MDF. You can get a 2x4ft sheet from Home Depot for just a few
                dollars. Is a pretty fine material and holds edges and sizes well. It i
                dusty to cut and may be a bit abrasive on cutters. I just used a piece
                to make the pattern for a casting for a nameplate for a 2ft loco Ive
                been helping rebuild.

                Just the other day I heard you can buy Bondo, or any similar body putty
                and cast it into blocks which supposedly cut as well as some of the
                special machinable plastic materials. I have not tried it, but I have
                used tons of the stuff as fillers and it does cut and sand well.

                ron ginger

                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]





                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • David
                Back in the Bad Olde Days, when we were still typing G-Code onto paper tape, it was pretty common to run test pieces on machinable wax or foam before
                Message 7 of 16 , Nov 1, 2009
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                  Back in the Bad Olde Days, when we were still typing G-Code onto paper tape, it was pretty common to run test pieces on machinable wax or foam before committing more expensive material. Especially if it was a big casting, or the CNC machining was a secondary operation on a piece we already had a lot of time and money into. On really big stuff, where several cubic feet of material might be machined away, milling that could take a couple of days, since foam could be milled at top speed there was a great savings in time and material. As CAD/CAM evolved, with more sophisticated error checking and simulation capabilities, the practice diminished. Though, working in a strictly prototyping operation, we retained it longer than might be the case in a production shop.

                  When I set up my home shop, I bought a chunk of wax from McMaster-Carr. A 1.25 x 3.5 x 12 inch bar, pn 9389K11 is $25. I use it mostly for embedding very small or delicate parts that can't be held otherwise. Also machine or cast it to make temporary fixtures. It melts easily on a hotplate, can be cast in and around anything, remelted and reused indefinitely. In 6 years I've barely put a dent in my original piece.

                  On my current project, I'm getting more and more into plastics, including casting styrene in RTV molds. Also machining parts from Delrin and ABS. This stuff machines beautifully, a lot faster with less tool wear and stress, and is a lot cheaper than metal. I'm liking this so well, that from now on, if it doesn't absolutely have to be made from metal, I'm not going to. Shortly, I'm going to be trying some 5 inch diameter 12 pitch gears out of 1/4" sheet ABS. Gonna try casting some spoked gear blanks of styrene as well. I'll let ya know.

                  The Bondo sounds like a promising idea also, gotta try that too.

                  David Clark in Southern Maryland, USA
                • Tom Wade
                  What kind of foam? I do like the idea that I can remelt the wax at any time. Tom ... From: David To: SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com Sent: Sunday, November 01,
                  Message 8 of 16 , Nov 1, 2009
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                    What kind of foam?

                    I do like the idea that I can remelt the wax at any time.

                    Tom


                    ----- Original Message -----
                    From: David
                    To: SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com
                    Sent: Sunday, November 01, 2009 10:41 AM
                    Subject: [SherlineCNC] Re: Which wax waxes witches worse?


                    Back in the Bad Olde Days, when we were still typing G-Code onto paper tape, it was pretty common to run test pieces on machinable wax or foam before committing more expensive material. Especially if it was a big casting, or the CNC machining was a secondary operation on a piece we already had a lot of time and money into. On really big stuff, where several cubic feet of material might be machined away, milling that could take a couple of days, since foam could be milled at top speed there was a great savings in time and material. As CAD/CAM evolved, with more sophisticated error checking and simulation capabilities, the practice diminished. Though, working in a strictly prototyping operation, we retained it longer than might be the case in a production shop.

                    When I set up my home shop, I bought a chunk of wax from McMaster-Carr. A 1.25 x 3.5 x 12 inch bar, pn 9389K11 is $25. I use it mostly for embedding very small or delicate parts that can't be held otherwise. Also machine or cast it to make temporary fixtures. It melts easily on a hotplate, can be cast in and around anything, remelted and reused indefinitely. In 6 years I've barely put a dent in my original piece.

                    On my current project, I'm getting more and more into plastics, including casting styrene in RTV molds. Also machining parts from Delrin and ABS. This stuff machines beautifully, a lot faster with less tool wear and stress, and is a lot cheaper than metal. I'm liking this so well, that from now on, if it doesn't absolutely have to be made from metal, I'm not going to. Shortly, I'm going to be trying some 5 inch diameter 12 pitch gears out of 1/4" sheet ABS. Gonna try casting some spoked gear blanks of styrene as well. I'll let ya know.

                    The Bondo sounds like a promising idea also, gotta try that too.

                    David Clark in Southern Maryland, USA





                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • chieftoolmaker
                    Hey Dave ( partner :) Ever use/try RenShape? Google No commercial connection..... Great Stuff! Regards, Jerry G (Glickstein) ... From: David To:
                    Message 9 of 16 , Nov 1, 2009
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                      Hey Dave ( partner :)
                      Ever use/try RenShape?
                      Google < RenShape>
                      No commercial connection.....
                      Great Stuff!
                      Regards,
                      Jerry G (Glickstein)





                      ----- Original Message -----
                      From: David
                      To: SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com
                      Sent: Sunday, November 01, 2009 10:41 AM
                      Subject: [SherlineCNC] Re: Which wax waxes witches worse?


                      Back in the Bad Olde Days, when we were still typing G-Code onto paper tape, it was pretty common to run test pieces on machinable wax or foam before committing more expensive material. Especially if it was a big casting, or the CNC machining was a secondary operation on a piece we already had a lot of time and money into. On really big stuff, where several cubic feet of material might be machined away, milling that could take a couple of days, since foam could be milled at top speed there was a great savings in time and material. As CAD/CAM evolved, with more sophisticated error checking and simulation capabilities, the practice diminished. Though, working in a strictly prototyping operation, we retained it longer than might be the case in a production shop.

                      When I set up my home shop, I bought a chunk of wax from McMaster-Carr. A 1.25 x 3.5 x 12 inch bar, pn 9389K11 is $25. I use it mostly for embedding very small or delicate parts that can't be held otherwise. Also machine or cast it to make temporary fixtures. It melts easily on a hotplate, can be cast in and around anything, remelted and reused indefinitely. In 6 years I've barely put a dent in my original piece.

                      On my current project, I'm getting more and more into plastics, including casting styrene in RTV molds. Also machining parts from Delrin and ABS. This stuff machines beautifully, a lot faster with less tool wear and stress, and is a lot cheaper than metal. I'm liking this so well, that from now on, if it doesn't absolutely have to be made from metal, I'm not going to. Shortly, I'm going to be trying some 5 inch diameter 12 pitch gears out of 1/4" sheet ABS. Gonna try casting some spoked gear blanks of styrene as well. I'll let ya know.

                      The Bondo sounds like a promising idea also, gotta try that too.

                      David Clark in Southern Maryland, USA





                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    • David
                      ... Check McMaster-Carr, page 3750, for their wax and foam. Also take a look at http://www.goldenwestmfg.com/ The higher density foams can be pretty
                      Message 10 of 16 , Nov 1, 2009
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                        --- In SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com, "Tom Wade" <tom@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > What kind of foam?
                        >
                        >


                        Check McMaster-Carr, page 3750, for their wax and foam. Also take a look at http://www.goldenwestmfg.com/ The higher density foams can be pretty expensive. For Sherline size parts you're probably better off with wax, since it can be reused.

                        You might try calling some machine shops in your area. It's possible they may have some scraps.

                        DC
                      • chieftoolmaker
                        Hey Tom, If you go to local machine shops, bring donuts and wear old work clothes.... Jerry G (Glickstein) ... From: David To: SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com
                        Message 11 of 16 , Nov 1, 2009
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                          Hey Tom,
                          If you go to local machine shops, bring donuts and wear old work clothes....
                          Jerry G (Glickstein)



                          ----- Original Message -----
                          From: David
                          To: SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com
                          Sent: Sunday, November 01, 2009 11:13 AM
                          Subject: [SherlineCNC] Re: Which wax waxes witches worse?




                          --- In SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com, "Tom Wade" <tom@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > What kind of foam?
                          >
                          >

                          Check McMaster-Carr, page 3750, for their wax and foam. Also take a look at http://www.goldenwestmfg.com/ The higher density foams can be pretty expensive. For Sherline size parts you're probably better off with wax, since it can be reused.

                          You might try calling some machine shops in your area. It's possible they may have some scraps.

                          DC





                          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                        • David
                          ... Not yet. Seen it at: http://www.caswellplating.com/models/renshape.html Looks good. Lower density stuff is 1/4 cost/cu.in. vs McMaster s foam. RenShape
                          Message 12 of 16 , Nov 1, 2009
                          • 0 Attachment
                            --- In SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com, "chieftoolmaker" <chieftoolmaker@...> wrote:
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Ever use/try RenShape?
                            >


                            Not yet. Seen it at:

                            http://www.caswellplating.com/models/renshape.html

                            Looks good. Lower density stuff is 1/4 cost/cu.in. vs McMaster's foam. RenShape castable filler is interesting too. I've been looking at Caswell's plating and finishing products also.

                            Best,

                            DC
                          • Andrew Werby
                            What a tongue-twister of a title! Anyway, I like machinable wax a lot. Not only is it good for testing out a toolpath, but it makes a good master for molding.
                            Message 13 of 16 , Nov 2, 2009
                            • 0 Attachment
                              What a tongue-twister of a title! Anyway, I like machinable wax a lot. Not only is it good for testing out a toolpath, but it makes a good master for molding. Yes, you can recycle it; use a deep-fat fryer with an infinite range control (not just High, Med, Low) so you can control the temperature precisely. Just heating it over the stove is not advisable, since it has a tendency to turn into a tower of flame...

                              Although it's not all that expensive, especially if you're recycling it, you can mix your own from candle wax (we call it paraffin in the States, which confuses the British, since that's what they call kerosene). In the deep-fat fryer, melt the wax, get it hot but not smoking, and start introducing LDPE (Low Density PolyEthylene) plastic, which should melt into the wax. That's what those grocery-store plastic bags you put vegies in are made of; you'll need quite a few bags, though. It can also be found in pellet form. You want about 1/3 plastic by weight when you're done. Pour it into a metal mold; it shrinks a lot, but that means it won't stick, even if there's no draft.

                              Andrew Werby
                              www.computersculpture.com
                            • Phil@Yahoo
                              I tried making a batch of DIY machinable wax per these instructions recently, and found the outcome unsatisfactory. I saved up a bunch of bags, (far more than
                              Message 14 of 16 , Nov 2, 2009
                              • 0 Attachment
                                I tried making a batch of DIY machinable wax per these instructions
                                recently, and found the outcome unsatisfactory. I saved up a bunch of bags,
                                (far more than I needed, as it turned out, and started with an old
                                decorative candle on a jar. Plain transparent paraffin, no coloring of any
                                kind. I cut the bags into strips and added them as the wax heated up. I
                                found that the ink on the bags (which you will find on virtually every
                                grocery bag, as no store will miss that opportunity to advertise) would not
                                melt with the plastic. Eventually I reached the point where no more plastic
                                would melt into the gooey mass, and assumed this must be as far as I could
                                go. The hot plate was set for maximum heat by that point, and the mixture
                                was emitting quite a bit of vapor, so I was worried about a fire. I turned
                                off the heat and poured the mixture out into a disposable aluminum pan to
                                cool. There was quit a lot of red ink bits floating about in the mixture,
                                and some stringy bits of plastic that had not thoroughly melted. I removed
                                as much of this apparently foreign matter as I could, and then left it to
                                cool. The result was a block of white material with a lot of little red bits
                                embedded in it, still pretty plastic at room temperature (I could bend it
                                easily with my hands), and still pretty greasy like plain paraffin. Because
                                of the plasticity I was pretty sure it would migrate under any clamping
                                force, and because of the greasiness I doubted it could be glued with
                                anything I could imagine. When cutting it did not stick to everything like
                                plain paraffin, but I did not really find it adequate for machining for the
                                reasons mentioned. I ended up tossing the whole batch and chalking it up to
                                experience. I would not recommend this DIY technique. If you want to machine
                                something soft that doesn't need to be melted later, I find polyurethane
                                resin works well. You can take the scrap bits and, if they're clean, toss
                                them onto the next batch for filler. It's kind of expensive per cubic inch,
                                but cheaper than commercial machinable wax, and machines very nicely. Easy
                                to mix and pour, and I've made block molds of cardboard and tape.
                                --Phil M.

                                ----- Original Message -----
                                From: Andrew Werby <andrew@...>
                                To: <SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com>
                                Sent: Monday, November 02, 2009 11:17 AM
                                Subject: [SherlineCNC] Re: Which wax waxes witches worse?


                                > What a tongue-twister of a title! Anyway, I like machinable wax a lot. Not
                                only is it good for testing out a toolpath, but it makes a good master for
                                molding. Yes, you can recycle it; use a deep-fat fryer with an infinite
                                range control (not just High, Med, Low) so you can control the temperature
                                precisely. Just heating it over the stove is not advisable, since it has a
                                tendency to turn into a tower of flame...
                                >
                                > Although it's not all that expensive, especially if you're recycling it,
                                you can mix your own from candle wax (we call it paraffin in the States,
                                which confuses the British, since that's what they call kerosene). In the
                                deep-fat fryer, melt the wax, get it hot but not smoking, and start
                                introducing LDPE (Low Density PolyEthylene) plastic, which should melt into
                                the wax. That's what those grocery-store plastic bags you put vegies in are
                                made of; you'll need quite a few bags, though. It can also be found in
                                pellet form. You want about 1/3 plastic by weight when you're done. Pour it
                                into a metal mold; it shrinks a lot, but that means it won't stick, even if
                                there's no draft.
                                >
                                > Andrew Werby
                                > www.computersculpture.com
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > ------------------------------------
                                >
                                > Yahoo! Groups Links
                                >
                                >
                                >
                              • Andrew Werby
                                Hi Phil; It sounds like you might have been using the wrong type of bags. I was talking about the clear kind, that never have any printing on them. You seem to
                                Message 15 of 16 , Nov 3, 2009
                                • 0 Attachment
                                  Hi Phil;

                                  It sounds like you might have been using the wrong type of bags. I was talking about the clear kind, that never have any printing on them. You seem to have used the "handle-bags" which are opaque, and generally are printed with store logos. I'm not sure what those are made of, but at least mine didn't leave pieces of print floating in the mix. The result in my case was a material that was a bit stiffer than plain paraffin wax, and not very plastic at all at room temps.

                                  By polyurethane resin, do you mean two-part foam, or a more solid casting material?

                                  Andrew Werby
                                  www.computersculpture.com





                                  "Phil@Yahoo" yahoo@... phil_mattison wrote:
                                  Date: Mon Nov 2, 2009 11:25 am ((PST))

                                  I tried making a batch of DIY machinable wax per these instructions
                                  recently, and found the outcome unsatisfactory. I saved up a bunch of bags,
                                  (far more than I needed, as it turned out, and started with an old
                                  decorative candle on a jar. Plain transparent paraffin, no coloring of any
                                  kind. I cut the bags into strips and added them as the wax heated up. I
                                  found that the ink on the bags (which you will find on virtually every
                                  grocery bag, as no store will miss that opportunity to advertise) would not
                                  melt with the plastic. Eventually I reached the point where no more plastic
                                  would melt into the gooey mass, and assumed this must be as far as I could
                                  go. The hot plate was set for maximum heat by that point, and the mixture
                                  was emitting quite a bit of vapor, so I was worried about a fire. I turned
                                  off the heat and poured the mixture out into a disposable aluminum pan to
                                  cool. There was quit a lot of red ink bits floating about in the mixture,
                                  and some stringy bits of plastic that had not thoroughly melted. I removed
                                  as much of this apparently foreign matter as I could, and then left it to
                                  cool. The result was a block of white material with a lot of little red bits
                                  embedded in it, still pretty plastic at room temperature (I could bend it
                                  easily with my hands), and still pretty greasy like plain paraffin. Because
                                  of the plasticity I was pretty sure it would migrate under any clamping
                                  force, and because of the greasiness I doubted it could be glued with
                                  anything I could imagine. When cutting it did not stick to everything like
                                  plain paraffin, but I did not really find it adequate for machining for the
                                  reasons mentioned. I ended up tossing the whole batch and chalking it up to
                                  experience. I would not recommend this DIY technique. If you want to machine
                                  something soft that doesn't need to be melted later, I find polyurethane
                                  resin works well. You can take the scrap bits and, if they're clean, toss
                                  them onto the next batch for filler. It's kind of expensive per cubic inch,
                                  but cheaper than commercial machinable wax, and machines very nicely. Easy
                                  to mix and pour, and I've made block molds of cardboard and tape.
                                  --Phil M.

                                  ----- Original Message -----
                                  From: Andrew Werby <andrew@...>
                                  To: <SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com>
                                  Sent: Monday, November 02, 2009 11:17 AM
                                  Subject: [SherlineCNC] Re: Which wax waxes witches worse?



                                  > > What a tongue-twister of a title! Anyway, I like machinable wax a lot. Not
                                  >
                                  only is it good for testing out a toolpath, but it makes a good master for
                                  molding. Yes, you can recycle it; use a deep-fat fryer with an infinite
                                  range control (not just High, Med, Low) so you can control the temperature
                                  precisely. Just heating it over the stove is not advisable, since it has a
                                  tendency to turn into a tower of flame...

                                  > >
                                  > > Although it's not all that expensive, especially if you're recycling it,
                                  >
                                  you can mix your own from candle wax (we call it paraffin in the States,
                                  which confuses the British, since that's what they call kerosene). In the
                                  deep-fat fryer, melt the wax, get it hot but not smoking, and start
                                  introducing LDPE (Low Density PolyEthylene) plastic, which should melt into
                                  the wax. That's what those grocery-store plastic bags you put vegies in are
                                  made of; you'll need quite a few bags, though. It can also be found in
                                  pellet form. You want about 1/3 plastic by weight when you're done. Pour it
                                  into a metal mold; it shrinks a lot, but that means it won't stick, even if
                                  there's no draft.

                                  > >
                                  > > Andrew Werby
                                  > > www.computersculpture.com
                                  > >
                                  > >


                                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                • Phil@Yahoo
                                  Two-part solid resin. For example: http://www.tapplastics.com/shop/product.php?pid=74 --Phil M. ... From: Andrew Werby To:
                                  Message 16 of 16 , Nov 4, 2009
                                  • 0 Attachment
                                    Two-part solid resin. For example:

                                    http://www.tapplastics.com/shop/product.php?pid=74

                                    --Phil M.

                                    ----- Original Message -----
                                    From: Andrew Werby <andrew@...>
                                    To: <SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com>
                                    Sent: Tuesday, November 03, 2009 5:38 PM
                                    Subject: [SherlineCNC] Re: Which wax waxes witches worse?


                                    > Hi Phil;
                                    >
                                    > It sounds like you might have been using the wrong type of bags. I was
                                    talking about the clear kind, that never have any printing on them. You seem
                                    to have used the "handle-bags" which are opaque, and generally are printed
                                    with store logos. I'm not sure what those are made of, but at least mine
                                    didn't leave pieces of print floating in the mix. The result in my case was
                                    a material that was a bit stiffer than plain paraffin wax, and not very
                                    plastic at all at room temps.
                                    >
                                    > By polyurethane resin, do you mean two-part foam, or a more solid casting
                                    material?
                                    >
                                    > Andrew Werby
                                    > www.computersculpture.com
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > "Phil@Yahoo" yahoo@... phil_mattison wrote:
                                    > Date: Mon Nov 2, 2009 11:25 am ((PST))
                                    >
                                    > I tried making a batch of DIY machinable wax per these instructions
                                    > recently, and found the outcome unsatisfactory. I saved up a bunch of
                                    bags,
                                    > (far more than I needed, as it turned out, and started with an old
                                    > decorative candle on a jar. Plain transparent paraffin, no coloring of any
                                    > kind. I cut the bags into strips and added them as the wax heated up. I
                                    > found that the ink on the bags (which you will find on virtually every
                                    > grocery bag, as no store will miss that opportunity to advertise) would
                                    not
                                    > melt with the plastic. Eventually I reached the point where no more
                                    plastic
                                    > would melt into the gooey mass, and assumed this must be as far as I could
                                    > go. The hot plate was set for maximum heat by that point, and the mixture
                                    > was emitting quite a bit of vapor, so I was worried about a fire. I turned
                                    > off the heat and poured the mixture out into a disposable aluminum pan to
                                    > cool. There was quit a lot of red ink bits floating about in the mixture,
                                    > and some stringy bits of plastic that had not thoroughly melted. I removed
                                    > as much of this apparently foreign matter as I could, and then left it to
                                    > cool. The result was a block of white material with a lot of little red
                                    bits
                                    > embedded in it, still pretty plastic at room temperature (I could bend it
                                    > easily with my hands), and still pretty greasy like plain paraffin.
                                    Because
                                    > of the plasticity I was pretty sure it would migrate under any clamping
                                    > force, and because of the greasiness I doubted it could be glued with
                                    > anything I could imagine. When cutting it did not stick to everything like
                                    > plain paraffin, but I did not really find it adequate for machining for
                                    the
                                    > reasons mentioned. I ended up tossing the whole batch and chalking it up
                                    to
                                    > experience. I would not recommend this DIY technique. If you want to
                                    machine
                                    > something soft that doesn't need to be melted later, I find polyurethane
                                    > resin works well. You can take the scrap bits and, if they're clean, toss
                                    > them onto the next batch for filler. It's kind of expensive per cubic
                                    inch,
                                    > but cheaper than commercial machinable wax, and machines very nicely. Easy
                                    > to mix and pour, and I've made block molds of cardboard and tape.
                                    > --Phil M.
                                    >
                                    > ----- Original Message -----
                                    > From: Andrew Werby <andrew@...>
                                    > To: <SherlineCNC@yahoogroups.com>
                                    > Sent: Monday, November 02, 2009 11:17 AM
                                    > Subject: [SherlineCNC] Re: Which wax waxes witches worse?
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > > > What a tongue-twister of a title! Anyway, I like machinable wax a lot.
                                    Not
                                    > >
                                    > only is it good for testing out a toolpath, but it makes a good master for
                                    > molding. Yes, you can recycle it; use a deep-fat fryer with an infinite
                                    > range control (not just High, Med, Low) so you can control the temperature
                                    > precisely. Just heating it over the stove is not advisable, since it has a
                                    > tendency to turn into a tower of flame...
                                    >
                                    > > >
                                    > > > Although it's not all that expensive, especially if you're recycling
                                    it,
                                    > >
                                    > you can mix your own from candle wax (we call it paraffin in the States,
                                    > which confuses the British, since that's what they call kerosene). In the
                                    > deep-fat fryer, melt the wax, get it hot but not smoking, and start
                                    > introducing LDPE (Low Density PolyEthylene) plastic, which should melt
                                    into
                                    > the wax. That's what those grocery-store plastic bags you put vegies in
                                    are
                                    > made of; you'll need quite a few bags, though. It can also be found in
                                    > pellet form. You want about 1/3 plastic by weight when you're done. Pour
                                    it
                                    > into a metal mold; it shrinks a lot, but that means it won't stick, even
                                    if
                                    > there's no draft.
                                    >
                                    > > >
                                    > > > Andrew Werby
                                    > > > www.computersculpture.com
                                    > > >
                                    > > >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > ------------------------------------
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