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Re: Anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?

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  • Dan Zimmerle
    ... This is *the* home shop project, IMHO. I have not done it -- insufficient time -- but there are 1 bazillion garage-shop suppliers and 1.5 bazillion
    Message 1 of 13 , Mar 2, 2006
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      --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "joecomunale1" <joecomunale@...>
      wrote:
      >
      > Has anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?
      >
      > If so - can you provide some pictures, sources, websites, etc?
      >
      > Thanks a lot,
      >
      > Joe
      >

      This is *the* home shop project, IMHO. I have not done it --
      insufficient time -- but there are 1 bazillion garage-shop suppliers
      and 1.5 bazillion discussion streams. For starters, search Yahoo for
      the CAD_CAM* groups. There are several. Then look at these web sites:

      www.industrialhobbies.com
      www.stepperworld.com
      http://www.yeagerautomation.com/ace.htm
      http://www.maxnc.com/

      I'm not recommending any of these places ... but they all have links
      to other sites and those have other links and its ... well endless.
      You'll find just about every variant in one night of searching.

      Now ... PERSONAL OPINION ON ....

      regardless of what you read, converting your machine will cost about
      twice as much as anyone says it will. Most of the CNC conversions
      start with "I found these ball screws on eBay," and believe me ... its
      a long way from eBay to CNC. In addition, the software -- decent G-
      code generator, step/direction driver, etc. can exceed the cost of
      the hardware.

      ... PERSONAL OPINION OFF ...

      Please, no flames ....

      Dan.





      CAD_CAM_
    • Dan Mauch
      I ve converted several. See my web site at www.camtronic-cnc.com Dan Mauch low cost stepper and servo motors. cases for Gecko drives kits and assembled 3-4
      Message 2 of 13 , Mar 2, 2006
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        I've converted several. See my web site at www.camtronic-cnc.com
        Dan Mauch
        low cost stepper and servo motors.
        cases for Gecko drives
        kits and assembled 3-4 axis drives
        www.camtronics-cnc.com
        www.seanet.com/~dmauch
        ----- Original Message -----
        From: "joecomunale1" <joecomunale@...>
        To: <mill_drill@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Thursday, March 02, 2006 8:17 AM
        Subject: [mill_drill] Anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?


        > Has anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?
        >
        > If so - can you provide some pictures, sources, websites, etc?
        >
        > Thanks a lot,
        >
        > Joe
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > Yahoo! Groups Links
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
      • corey renner
        Dan is 100% correct. No, actually 200% correct. I got deep into a knee mill conversion that was still nowhere near being done, then I came across a small
        Message 3 of 13 , Mar 2, 2006
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          Dan is 100% correct.  No, actually 200% correct.

          I got deep into a knee mill conversion that was still nowhere near being done, then I came across a small broken cnc mill (Denford Easimill 3).  I got it running for about $500 (new pc based controllers & (2) VFD's for 3phase spindle and coolant) and everything is already there (ballscrews, limit switches, inductive proximity home switches, one shot oiler, coolant, shields, etc.)

          However, if you have your heart set on doing a from-scratch conversion, give me a call I've got new 5/8" ballscrews, antibacklash nuts, (3) G320 Geckodrives, etc. that are going on Ebay soon...

          cheers,
          c

          On 3/2/06, Dan Zimmerle <dzimmerle@...> wrote:

          Now ... PERSONAL OPINION ON ....

          regardless of what you read, converting your machine will cost about
          twice as much as anyone says it will.  Most of the CNC conversions
          start with "I found these ball screws on eBay," and believe me ... its
          a long way from eBay to CNC.  In addition, the software -- decent G-
          code generator, step/direction driver, etc.  can exceed the cost of
          the hardware.

          ... PERSONAL OPINION OFF ...

          Please, no flames ....

          Dan.

        • bs23voe
          Joe Yes I have converted dozens, and I can certainly remember back to the beginning when all I had was questions. For the larger mill drills, like the one you
          Message 4 of 13 , Mar 2, 2006
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            Joe

            Yes I have converted dozens, and I can certainly remember back to
            the beginning when all I had was questions. For the larger mill
            drills, like the one you see on the front page when you log on to this
            group. Any conversion kits are available are extremely high. There are
            many opinions on how to convert, dependant on personal preference.

            I suggest you decide what you want end up with when it is all
            done. If you just want to explore the world of CNC, and cut a few
            parts. Or just work with wood, go for the low end conversion. Keep
            your lead screws, find some surplus stepper motors & drives, make some
            mounts for the motors, and wire it all up.

            If you want to go for the high end where the machine will be able
            to do precision work, and move fast, replace your lead screws with
            ball screws, use DC servos with gecko drives, and make and wire it up.

            Research is the key if you are new to CNC. lots of people do it,
            only after you are experienced will you know who does it right. One
            other thing you should consider is whether you want for your machine
            to have manual capabilities after you Finnish. More than one website
            set up selling conversion parts sells kits or parts that eliminate
            manual function. I can assure you that you will still want to be able
            to use the machine manually, and not write a cnc program for every
            operation, or when you want to move the X,Y, or Z axis for any reason.
            For simple things like drilling holes, a simple milling cut, or even
            cleaning the machine. If you ever get into trouble and the machine
            smashes or crushes or otherwise grabs and will not let go of you, an
            emergency stop button should be easily reachable from the front of the
            machine. This only stops the machine, it will not free you. If you
            retain manual function in the conversion, you retain manual function.
            So not only can you perform simple functions manually, you can free
            yourself in case of a disaster.

            The camtronics website mentioned in another post, I recommend.

            Doc



            --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "joecomunale1" <joecomunale@...> wrote:
            >
            > Has anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?
            >
            > If so - can you provide some pictures, sources, websites, etc?
            >
            > Thanks a lot,
            >
            > Joe
            >
          • Lou Jackson
            ... However, if you DO opt to maintain manual function, you should remove the handle on the control wheel, or even replace it with some kind of wheel with NO
            Message 5 of 13 , Mar 2, 2006
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              --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "bs23voe" <bs23voe@...> wrote:
              > ...
              > I can assure you that you will still want to be able to use the
              > machine manually, and not write a cnc program for every
              > operation, or when you want to move the X,Y, or Z axis for any
              > reason. For simple things like drilling holes, a simple milling
              > cut, or even cleaning the machine. If you ever get into trouble
              > and the machine smashes or crushes or otherwise grabs and will
              > not let go of you, an emergency stop button should be easily
              > reachable from the front of the machine. This only stops the
              > machine, it will not free you. If you retain manual function in
              > the conversion, you retain manual function. So not only can you
              > perform simple functions manually, you can free yourself in case
              > of a disaster.
              > ...
              > Doc

              However, if you DO opt to maintain manual function, you should
              remove the handle on the control wheel, or even replace it with
              some kind of wheel with NO handle. That handle WILL grab you if
              left on, and would only exacerbate any E-Stop safety concerns.

              Lou
            • promark
              Bad URL ... From: Dan Mauch To: mill_drill@yahoogroups.com Sent: Thursday, March 02, 2006 11:40 AM Subject: Re: [mill_drill] Anyone converted their Bench
              Message 6 of 13 , Mar 2, 2006
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                Bad URL
                 
                ----- Original Message -----
                From: Dan Mauch
                Sent: Thursday, March 02, 2006 11:40 AM
                Subject: Re: [mill_drill] Anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?

                I've converted several. See my web site at www.camtronic-cnc.com
                Dan Mauch
                low cost stepper and servo motors.
                cases for Gecko drives
                kits and assembled 3-4 axis drives
                www.camtronics-cnc.com
                www.seanet.com/~dmauch
                ----- Original Message -----
                From: "joecomunale1" <joecomunale@...>
                To: <mill_drill@yahoogroups.com>
                Sent: Thursday, March 02, 2006 8:17 AM
                Subject: [mill_drill] Anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?


                > Has anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?
                >
                > If so - can you provide some pictures, sources, websites, etc?
                >
                > Thanks a lot,
                >
                > Joe
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                > Yahoo! Groups Links
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                >
              • Jerry Kimberlin
                ... Comes in loud and clear for me. JerryK
                Message 7 of 13 , Mar 2, 2006
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                  promark wrote:

                  > Bad URL

                  Comes in loud and clear for me.

                  JerryK

                  > I've converted several. See my web site at www.camtronic-cnc.com
                  > <http://www.camtronic-cnc.com>
                • Philip Burman
                  Forget the guys trying to sell you stuff. They all know about this forum and should have directed you to it: http://www.cnczone.com/forums/
                  Message 8 of 13 , Mar 2, 2006
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                    Forget the guys trying to sell you stuff. They all know about this
                    forum and should have directed you to it:

                    http://www.cnczone.com/forums/

                    Read,read,read,ask,ask,ask before you buy.

                    Good Luck
                    Phil

                    --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "joecomunale1" <joecomunale@...>
                    wrote:
                    >
                    > Has anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?
                    >
                    > If so - can you provide some pictures, sources, websites, etc?
                    >
                    > Thanks a lot,
                    >
                    > Joe
                    >
                  • tppjr
                    Joe, I converted a RF-45 benchtop. Some pics and info are on my photopage. Thomas http://QualityPartsOnline.com http://imageevent.com/tppjr (photopage) ...
                    Message 9 of 13 , Mar 2, 2006
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                      Joe,
                      I converted a RF-45 benchtop. Some pics and info are on my photopage.

                      Thomas
                      http://QualityPartsOnline.com
                      http://imageevent.com/tppjr (photopage)


                      ----- Original Message -----
                      From: "joecomunale1" <joecomunale@...>
                      To: <mill_drill@yahoogroups.com>
                      Sent: Thursday, March 02, 2006 8:17 AM
                      Subject: [mill_drill] Anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?


                      > Has anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?
                      >
                      > If so - can you provide some pictures, sources, websites, etc?
                      >
                      > Thanks a lot,
                      >
                      > Joe
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Yahoo! Groups Links
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                    • Jerry Kimberlin
                      ... Now that you have gone and done it.....Can you recommend any resources such as Yahoo groups or whatever that were the most helpful. This group is not
                      Message 10 of 13 , Mar 2, 2006
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                        tppjr wrote:

                        > Joe,
                        > I converted a RF-45 benchtop. Some pics and info are on my photopage.
                        >
                        > Thomas
                        > http://QualityPartsOnline.com
                        > http://imageevent.com/tppjr (photopage)

                        Now that you have gone and done it.....Can you recommend any
                        resources such as Yahoo groups or whatever that were the
                        most helpful. This group is not primarily for CNC
                        conversions but there are several others that are pretty
                        good. What did you find? It is sometimes a very confusing
                        process. Many converters are using surplus motors and some
                        are using new ones, etc., etc.

                        JerryK
                      • bs23voe
                        Lou You do bring up a good point about the handle on the wheel. If you leave the handle on the wheel it is much easier to use as a manual machine. I think of
                        Message 11 of 13 , Mar 2, 2006
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                          Lou

                          You do bring up a good point about the handle on the wheel. If you
                          leave the handle on the wheel it is much easier to use as a manual
                          machine. I think of the rotating wheels with the handles as I do the
                          rotating cutting tools, and the pinch points created by the CNC
                          conversion. You have to give a CNC machine lots of room while in
                          operation. If you are close enough for the machine to injure you; you
                          are to close. I do get your point, and agree that lessening the
                          possible hazards here is not to be downplayed. When I think about
                          rotating cutting tools, pinch points that can shear off fingers or
                          worse. All of this makes me stand back and watch operation from a safe
                          distance. You simply can not afford to crowd one of these machines,
                          they are dangerous.



                          Doc


                          --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "Lou Jackson" <focusknobs@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "bs23voe" <bs23voe@> wrote:
                          > > ...
                          > > I can assure you that you will still want to be able to use the
                          > > machine manually, and not write a cnc program for every
                          > > operation, or when you want to move the X,Y, or Z axis for any
                          > > reason. For simple things like drilling holes, a simple milling
                          > > cut, or even cleaning the machine. If you ever get into trouble
                          > > and the machine smashes or crushes or otherwise grabs and will
                          > > not let go of you, an emergency stop button should be easily
                          > > reachable from the front of the machine. This only stops the
                          > > machine, it will not free you. If you retain manual function in
                          > > the conversion, you retain manual function. So not only can you
                          > > perform simple functions manually, you can free yourself in case
                          > > of a disaster.
                          > > ...
                          > > Doc
                          >
                          > However, if you DO opt to maintain manual function, you should
                          > remove the handle on the control wheel, or even replace it with
                          > some kind of wheel with NO handle. That handle WILL grab you if
                          > left on, and would only exacerbate any E-Stop safety concerns.
                          >
                          > Lou
                          >
                        • tppjr
                          Joe, I know you responded asking a couple of questions. I was unable to answer at the time and must have deleted the email from you. I will try to remember,
                          Message 12 of 13 , Mar 6, 2006
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                            Joe,
                            I know you responded asking a couple of questions. I was unable to answer
                            at the time and must have deleted the email from you. I will try to
                            remember, if I forget anything ask again and I will respond right away this
                            time.

                            I would recommend the following yahoo groups (pretty much all that deal with
                            cnc and benchtop mills)

                            mach1mach2cnc@yahoogroups.com this is for the machine control software.
                            Just spend some time there and you will see how good a controller it is and
                            for $150 it is worth about 10 times that.

                            geckodrive@yahoogroups.com this is for the motor controllers that I
                            recommend, stepper or servo.

                            CAD_CAM_EDM_DRO@yahoogroups.com
                            DIY-CNC@yahoogroups.com
                            machined_hobbiest@yahoogroups.com

                            I have gotten TONS of info from these sites.

                            Thomas
                            http://QualityPartsOnline.com
                            http://imageevent.com/tppjr (photopage)


                            ----- Original Message -----
                            From: "tppjr" <tppjr@...>
                            To: <mill_drill@yahoogroups.com>
                            Sent: Thursday, March 02, 2006 5:29 PM
                            Subject: Re: [mill_drill] Anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?


                            > Joe,
                            > I converted a RF-45 benchtop. Some pics and info are on my photopage.
                            >
                            > Thomas
                            > http://QualityPartsOnline.com
                            > http://imageevent.com/tppjr (photopage)
                            >
                            >
                            > ----- Original Message -----
                            > From: "joecomunale1" <joecomunale@...>
                            > To: <mill_drill@yahoogroups.com>
                            > Sent: Thursday, March 02, 2006 8:17 AM
                            > Subject: [mill_drill] Anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?
                            >
                            >
                            >> Has anyone converted their Bench Mill/Drill to CNC?
                            >>
                            >> If so - can you provide some pictures, sources, websites, etc?
                            >>
                            >> Thanks a lot,
                            >>
                            >> Joe
                            >>
                            >>
                            >>
                            >>
                            >>
                            >>
                            >> Yahoo! Groups Links
                            >>
                            >>
                            >>
                            >>
                            >>
                            >>
                            >>
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Yahoo! Groups Links
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
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