Let's Make Robots!

The Phoenix CNC machine

Cuts designed robot parts

Hi all,

Phoenix is almost ready for prime time, mechanics almost done aside for e few things here and there.

Some pictures below...


































Will be updating ... stay tuned.



Update 14-02-2011 - Richard gear offspring 

This weekend I think I managed to finish alignment on all axes (well as close as possible), broke the 1 mm bit trying to cut gears in polystirene ... yeah plastic melts when the endmill get's hot (dooh) ... so I think I'll skip plastics for now....

However I have good success cutting gears in 3mm HDF sheet with a 2 mm end mill the result looks pretty nice:

The above was fresh out and made in a hurry ... no belly buttons either :) But the next attempt was better after fixing the aligment. Picture later when I'll get home. 

So using a 2 mm bit means bigger gears, next month or later I'll get a new 1 mm bit and have another try. 

Next to concentrate on creating a gearbox, with a 10/1 or more reduction so I can use my little gearless cdrom drive motors with it.


Update 15.02.2011 - PCB milling! Sure ... but after flattening the table :(



So last evening I have decided to have another try at doing PCB's.

It works better than before, pretty good actually. But before I can really start doing any serious stuff I need to surface the table because while it seems pretty flat it has +- 0.1 mm variations here and there causing milling depth variations. In turn those cause some tracks milled way to deep and others not at all, and this jobs needs at least 0.1 mm accuracy to get finer detail for SMD parts (QFP32 anyone?). 

Flattening is definetly a weekend job as it takes an hour or two so next PCB attempt will be sometime after I manage that. 

All in all I think it works pretty well ... unless otherwise prooved ;)

On to gearbox and other robot parts design... finally. 

PS: Some low quality milling video added ... not much detail but you get the general idea :)

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What software (CAD and CAM) do you use for controlling your machine?


I'm using EMC2 (linuxcnc.org), forgot to add any details :)

Those spade / 3 sides pyramid bits seem to be the standard stuff in the PCB milling domain.

I just redone the work surface, hopefully this time it is straighter than before. I will attempt milling PCB's once more when I get the time/need I think I managed to sharpen a bit in the correct shape this time to get 0.1 to 0.3 mm accuracy, testing will reveal the reality :D

Why did you abandon the aluminum rail setup. Did the alu wear down to fast or were they too flimsy to provide any accuracy?
I hope you find some time to describe this shiny new toy.

It would be very interesting to hear your motivations on the design changes.

I had to drop the aluminium rails because:

1. They weardown fast and uneven

2. They were flexing on higher loads but the real problem is 1


How about the switch from T- to V-profile for the linear slides. Is there any difference in stability/precision?

It seems only the very edge of each bearing is in contact with the V-profile. Does those ball bearings show any signs of damage from taking the force from an angle like that?

1. yes there is

2. while the bearings are not built for this it seems fine

thats a cool looking machine

what dose CNC stand for any way