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  #1  
Old Fri 05 January 2007, 07:02
Arthur Ransom
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Art has passed away RIP #2 - Lancaster Texas

I am Art Ransom located in Lancaster, TX on the south side of Dallas. I am a retire network engineer (mainframe, Novell and Microsoft) and I started my business TurningARound on 2001 as a tax write off for shop and toys. I do custom and architectural woodturning and am having a great time. I have been using a Legacy Ornamental Mill and reached the point where it is boring and machine doesn?t have the capacity to do what I want. After researching CNC I decided to build my own, a commercial machine to do what I wanted was 200K. Unfortunately I didn?t discover MechMate till I was 95% complete on my DIY machine. Plan on starting a MechMate around the middle of 2007. My machine is teaching me a lot of things not to do.
I need a machine that will turn a 24? by 12? column along with fluting, rope/barley twist and carving. The bad part is I have not found anyone that is doing woodturning so any suggestions that you metal turning guys have please let me know. My web site is www.turningaround.org and am documenting my machine on it.
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  #2  
Old Thu 18 January 2007, 12:14
fabrica
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Dear Arthur,

Your stuff looks super. Maybe One day I will need to have a indexer fixed to the mechmate which I am developing at the mement. At that moment of time I may need your inputs.
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  #3  
Old Sat 12 May 2007, 11:00
Arthur Ransom
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New to CNC - Lancaster Texas

I started building prior to finding this site and I used 4" box for the frame. Now I have started building the Mechmate gantry and have made it too narrow. The photo has a 1/2" piece of Al taped to the frame for reference. Open to sugestions to correct my oops.
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  #4  
Old Mon 14 May 2007, 09:31
Gerald_D
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Sorry Art, can't think of anything simpler than lengthening the gantry, or making the table narrower.
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  #5  
Old Mon 14 May 2007, 12:11
Arthur Ransom
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**@*%^*^@#@(*&^%@)@#@!^_$^@!#$!!!
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  #6  
Old Mon 14 May 2007, 12:14
Gerald_D
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You could put 3" box on top of the 4" box you used for the table?
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  #7  
Old Mon 14 May 2007, 14:32
DocTanner
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Art,
I certainly understand your frustration of finding Gerald's plans after starting.
Same thing happened here.

Even after backing up and redoing several items, I found it more than worth the effort.

Best of Luck,
DocTanner
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  #8  
Old Sat 02 June 2007, 05:11
Art
Just call me: Art #2
 
Lancaster,Texas
United States of America
Gantry streacher

Well I used my woodworking experience and solved the problem. Soaked the box beams in water to soften them and put the gantry on my metal streacher and streached the length by 2.8" Sorry Gerald but I went with yellow and black color scheme instead the blue. Had a friend make me the Z slide. He thought the stock on the plan was too thin so he made it out of 1/2" thick material. Now that the wife is out of the hospital( 11 weeks) I can get back to work on the machine. Will post some pictures soon.
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  #9  
Old Wed 06 June 2007, 18:39
Art
Just call me: Art #2
 
Lancaster,Texas
United States of America
pictures

here are pics of my gantry. I still have to get the gas shock and wire up the limit switches, input for solid state relay that turns on the router and dust collector.


(You need to log in to see the pictures displayed correctly)
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  #10  
Old Wed 06 June 2007, 22:13
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Gee, when you said your gantry was too short, I didn't realise it was that much!

Nice job! What were the surprises or headaches?
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  #11  
Old Thu 07 June 2007, 01:03
IN-WondeR
Just call me: Kim
 
Randers
Denmark
That's a funky little machine....

What are you planning on making on it... you are a little handicapped in plate sizes...!!!
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  #12  
Old Thu 07 June 2007, 01:13
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Have a look at Art's website and then notice that his "table" above has no cross-supports, also see this thread: Mounting 4th axis rotating indexer or lathe under the gantry
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  #13  
Old Thu 07 June 2007, 06:35
IN-WondeR
Just call me: Kim
 
Randers
Denmark
Oooohhhhhh, that's going to be a huge indexer.... nice.....
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  #14  
Old Thu 07 June 2007, 06:58
Art
Just call me: Art #2
 
Lancaster,Texas
United States of America
Indexer

Gerald where did the bumble bee go? The machine is designed to do columns up to 24" by 10'. Wish now that I had made it wide enough for a sheet of plywood but the next one will have full sheet capability. Look closly and you will see the proxmity switches on the X rail and the AC outlet on the Y car. The AC outlet is controled by a solid state relayid that turns on with a M03 command and turns off with M30 command. This turns on/off the dust collector and router. Interesting fact on solid state relays is that they need to have a load on them to work. This led to some real head scraching when the lamp I used in testing worked and when the router and DC were plugged in they worked but when the electronic controled router by it's self didn't work. I used 4" cable chain because I got 60' of it for 100 USD. Looking for a cool bobble head to mount on top of the Z plate. Anyone have any suggestions?

Last edited by Art; Thu 07 June 2007 at 07:02.. Reason: add data
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  #15  
Old Thu 07 June 2007, 08:21
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Nah, that bumble-bee was too big and it stole your thunder - was just a time-filler till you posted the promised pics

That solid state relay observation (with an electronically controlled router) is well worth remembering.

You should be able to make a bobble head of this:

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  #16  
Old Mon 23 July 2007, 19:23
Art
Just call me: Art #2
 
Lancaster,Texas
United States of America
Up And Running!!

So what is my serial number? Guess it should end with .5 as it is a hybrid. Need to post final picture after getting the cabling cleaned up. A real fun project. I would like to build the gantry for anyone but unless you are close to pick up the machine you should build the table. This time of the year It gets too hot in the shop between 1100 and 1700 without the AC on and I don't do turning without the dust collector on and the DC sucks all the AC out. If you are interested contact me. akransom@tx.rr.com Gerald what is the royalty fee? Here is my hybrid,
http://www.turningaround.org/4_axis_mill.htm
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  #17  
Old Tue 24 July 2007, 00:05
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Hi Art, your serial # should be something like 1SYB - the first short yellow & black one.
When there is a photo of it carrying the logo, and looking ready to cut something, it gets the next serial number. No.2 is still officially vacant.

Royalty should be 5% of profit, or 2.5% of total fee, but don't ask me how to pay it yet - the currency might be a return favour, or something.
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  #18  
Old Wed 25 July 2007, 07:33
Marc Shlaes
Just call me: Marc
 
Cleveland, OH
United States of America
Send a message via Skype™ to Marc Shlaes
Hey Art,

I have looked at the Legacy Ornamental Mill. Never did decide to spend the money. Your machine is very interesting (and very yellow). I think that there are about 20 people that can't wait to see what you can 'turn' out.

Good Job.

Post some project pictures - please - as soon as you can.

Thanks,

Marc
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  #19  
Old Fri 27 July 2007, 11:01
Art
Just call me: Art #2
 
Lancaster,Texas
United States of America
Gerald you need to start a serial # regestry. Here is my MechMate # 1SYB. See it at http://www.turningaround.org/4_axis_mill.htm .
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  #20  
Old Fri 27 July 2007, 13:30
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Looks good Art!

The serial number thing is a bit tongue-in-the-cheek because no two models will ever be really alike and nobody is going to follow all the drawings, colour schemes and logos exactly

What really is going to count points is if you can produce one signed by the designer! Those will really become collector's items.
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  #21  
Old Sat 28 July 2007, 08:12
Art
Just call me: Art #2
 
Lancaster,Texas
United States of America
True it will be rare that someone follows the plans exactly. But it would be cool to have a rogue galley of the MechMates built around the world. Great news, the Lancaster School District has finally ordered the router and it is in build mode! Only took them 4 years. At this rate we may be actually be able to start building MechMates within 2 years,
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  #22  
Old Sat 28 July 2007, 09:52
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Art, the ** sticky threads at the top of the Personal Pages forum are the completed machines. Or, at least some of them. Doc Tanner was the first guy to actually cut something with his machine built off the website plans, Fabrica was the first to publish smart pictures of a smart looking machine. You are the third person to have this "blog" go into the completed (sticky) section of the Personal Pages forum. Yours is the first indexer. Mine was the first machine. Doc Tanner's was probably the first built alone (no staff). Etc. Each to their own - it is about personal satisfaction and not a race (I hope).

Refresh my memory on the Lancaster school project - it rings a faint bell.....
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  #23  
Old Wed 01 August 2007, 21:14
Daya
Just call me: Fabrica
 
Kandy
Sri Lanka
I too have done a Indexer. Maybe I will have time today to uplaod some pics.
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  #24  
Old Tue 07 August 2007, 18:56
Daya
Just call me: Fabrica
 
Kandy
Sri Lanka
Art can you please post some pics of some jobs that you have done. Also can you please send me some links where I could find detailed pics of columns which could be turned out in a indexer such as the one you have turned out.

Gerald the Laser is still in progress. I am building a separate table for this purpose. Work is pretty slow since I had to get myself involved in some other urgent work.
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  #25  
Old Wed 19 September 2007, 21:00
Art
Just call me: Art #2
 
Lancaster,Texas
United States of America
First production job

Finished the three 6' posts and spent most of the day getting an extra 3" in length so I can mount the 10' posts. I am mounting the posts between centers using 4 jaw chucks ,http://www.grizzly.com/products/h8049, so I can center the stock. Turned out that the vender sent me a chuck with wrong threads. Naturaly 3 months ago when I used one of the chucks on my wood lathe I grabed the one that was what I ordered and yesterday when I tried to use both chucks I discovered the error. I had to use my 10" chuck which is 5" thicker and 30 lbs heavier. What a real PITA!
This project was a perfect training project. I had two 6' and three 10', 8" by 8" fir posts that needed 6" long 8" square ends and the rest milled to an octogon. To keep it simple I decided that I would mill the flats and do the 4 sides to 8 side transitions by hand. I used the surfancing wizard in Mach3 to create the G code and then edited it to add a M3 at start to turn on the router and a G91 A90 at the end to rotate the stock 90 to the next flat. The entire file was set up as a macro that repeated 4 times and I had an octogonal post. Slicker than snot on a door knob! Running at 300 IPM it took about an hour to do a 6' post. It was nerve racking when I hit start and left to run errands. I was wondering if I would come back to a $100 piece of scrap wood or a finished product. Every thing worked right! I should post pictures on my site by Monday.
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  #26  
Old Fri 21 September 2007, 17:24
Art
Just call me: Art #2
 
Lancaster,Texas
United States of America
A axis help

I am running a 920 oz stepper with a 4.5 belt driven gear reduction on the A axis. I realy need more torque and holding power. I only see two options. I could mill a large gear or get a 900+ stepper with gear reduction. Rotation speed of 15 RPM ( 276 IPM at 6" diameter) should be OK. Any suggestions appreciated.
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  #27  
Old Fri 21 September 2007, 20:20
Richards
Just call me: Mike
 
South Jordan, UT
United States of America
Art,
Your A-axis stepper @ 920 oz*in is about as big as I've ever used (or tested). Also, your 4.5:1 gearing is higher than the 3:1 and 3.6:1 belt-driven transmissions that I've built. All of the Oriental Motor steppers that are commonly used use a PK296 size stepper, which has about 300 oz*in. The gear box supplied with those motors (PK296A2A-SGx.x where x.x is 3.6, 7.2, etc) limits the available torque to well below the mechanical torque expected with a 300 oz*in motor geared down 3.6:1, 7.2:1, etc.

If I were looking for a higher gear ratio, I would probably resort to a multi-stage belt-driven transmission. By doing that, the 920 oz*in of the the stepper would be multiplied by the gear-ratio. The drawback is additional complexity; however, from the photos that you've posted, it looks like you have room for a two-stage belt-drive.
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  #28  
Old Fri 21 September 2007, 23:22
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Art, would a worm-drive gearbox have too much backlash for you? Example
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  #29  
Old Sat 22 September 2007, 14:36
Art
Just call me: Art #2
 
Lancaster,Texas
United States of America
options

Brief search and I found a 1800 oz stepper without gear ratio. I was thinking of a geared stepper of the 900 oz range or better with 5:1 or 10:1 gear ratio toreplace my present stepper. The stepper would be cheaper and easier than adding another gear or the speed reducer. With a 5:1 stepper and present belt wouldn't that give me a 22.5:1 ratio or 22470 oz to the A axis shaft with a 900 oz stepper? This brings up data transfer rate limits of the printer port. How do I determine the max data transfer rate of my printer ports?
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  #30  
Old Sat 22 September 2007, 14:43
Gerald D
Just call me: Gerald (retired)
 
Cape Town
South Africa
Art, did you see my question on the worm box? If that type of backlash is acceptable you can pick up a worm box very cheaply (less than the price of a stepper).

Mach sets your data transfer rate (over 70 000 pules per sec, or 2000 rpm).
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