In my last blog I detailed the conversion of a manual rotary axis into a CNC rotary axis. I finally got some time to mount the rotary axis on the mill, configure the stepper in Mach3 and run it through some tests. The parameter for the g-code command to position the rotary axis is a positive or negative number ranging from 0 to 360 degrees. Positive numbers rotate clockwise and negative numbers rotate counter clockwise.
I started by creating a 3 dimensional object using Solidworks and designed a projectile that will eventually be milled in metal for a coil gun project that I’m working on. I decided to do the cut in wood since this was the first project using the rotary axis and I wasn’t sure how it would work out.
Made some great progress on my PCB CNC mill in the past week. For our new readers: I built a machine, that manipulates copper-covered board under a Dremel rotary cutting tool to carve out electronic circuit boards to support our rapid prototyping capabilities.
I’m happy to announce that the CNC router table is now complete. We’re one step closer to having rapid prototyping capability. The router table can be used to cut a variety of materials under computer numerical control (CNC). Objects are designed using CAD (computer aided design) software and then exported to a CAM (computer aided manufacturing) file format. CAD may be used to design curves and figures in two-dimensional (2D) space as well as curves, surfaces, and solids in three-dimensional (3D) objects. I’m in the process of sorting out the software and have had success using MACH3 to run the machine. Mach3 has a lot of flexibility for tuning the stepper motors of each axis and also includes a 3 dimensional rendering of the G-code to verify that the tool path is correct. Click through for more info…
Sweet progress on the circuit board mill at TON this week. I swapped in a pure Win98 laptop (booted to DOS) for the Win ME laptop I tried last week. Using pure DOS mode (vs a DOS box) allowed TurboCNC to run smoothly, no interference with either the laptop timer chip or parallel port access. Motors have that old smooth sound, no dropped steps, rock solid consistency of tool path. I hope to be cutting copper later this week.