Monday, July 9, 2012

Shapeoko Mill

I have been looking forward to building this Shapeoko Mill for a while now. I want to own my own basic manufacturing equipment so that I can start to build prototypes of my ideas. The Shapeoko is a really good design and it is easy to build upon. Right now, I am working on getting a simple job competed as an example. I also have a Solidoodle 3D printer in the mail right now. I am very pleased with how well it turned out. The designers really went out of their way to make sure that you could build this mill quickly and without additional tools that did not come with the kit. I spent a Friday night and part of a Saturday building my mill. Total build time might have been around 5 to 7 hours. One part of the mill that I thought could use some improvement was the way the rubber gear belts were connected to the frame. The belts are important because the X/Y gantries traverse their working envelope by creeping along the belts. The points where the belts are meant to fasten do not provide as sturdy of a connection that I would like and are out of proper alignment. I changed how the belts were fastened to improve the alignment of the belts and their connection to the frame. Once my 3D printer comes in, I will devise some sort of clever way to fasten the belts to the frame in a more permanent and streamlined fashion.

beginning the plates

some of the tools and connectors

Would you look at that, it is looking like something!

My desk was really awesome.

The mechanicals are complete.
Finished the electronics!


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