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whats best 3axis cnc for $4500

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  • whats best 3axis cnc for $4500

    Hi guys,im from the manual lathe /mill part of the site and i want to get a cnc. can u guys tell me what the best bang for the buck machine there is for a 3axis w at least a 24"by 24" mill area for mostly metals/aluminum? And maybe if mach 3 is the best program or? thanks guys!!

  • #2
    I dont believe tooling will exceed 3/8"-1/2" ,will b doing mostly aluminum but some lighter steels. would like 24" by 24" working area on mill table. im not a manufacturer so speed wont be a top priority. Would like to do some gunsmithing but not positive yet.

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    • #3
      Hi Ogre,

      I think that your biggest challenge is going to be finding any mill that handles that work envelope in the size that you stated, new or used. I may be wrong and that has happened many times before but a mill with that size envelope is going to be a pretty hefty piece of iron. You might look to see if some of the Shopbot products might suit your needs. They have a smaller unit called a buddy that I think is 4' x 4' on the surface. Keep in mind that it's a router. I know several folks with Shopbots who have done some aluminum work but they would never do steel. That's why they also have mills. ;-)

      What are you looking to do that requires that envelope? Is it something that can be registered and regionally milled then shifted and re-registered?

      If we know what you're looking to do, you might get better advice.

      Hope this helps,
      Terry

      There's only one way to find out, might as well get started now!

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      • #4
        If you want to cut steel at 24" x 24" you are missing a zero's from the right hand side of the figure you are prepared to pay.
        .

        Sir John , Earl of Bligeport & Sudspumpwater. MBE [ Motor Bike Engineer ] Nottingham England.



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        • #5
          Ive been reading for 2days and i think ur right. My main material to mill will b aluminum and i would like to engrave w it slso. So i guess im looking at a router type set up. i found one on ebay for $2800ish w gecko contollers and he has 24"by24" and a 24"by49" that im looking at. i dont know hiw to post a link but if someone wants to look at it for me ill get the item# in a second. He says he cuts aluminum w it all the time w no problems. It uses mach 3 software. thanks john!!

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          • #6
            The 24"by24" is item # 261231597529 & the 24"by49" is item # 261239509861. On ebay. If anybody has a chance to search that item # on ebay and let me know ur opinion on it w upgraded gecko controllers id appreciate ur opinion.thanks

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            • #7
              I like the fact they are using NSK type linear rails which are far better than the round but to be honest it looks a little flimsy on the build.
              OK for wood but I would not like to guarantee any accuracy on alloy with this machine.

              It definitely needs the Gecko upgrade as 24volts for a machine this size is useless and 270 oz/in motors are also a bit feeble, I'd expect to see 350 to 380 oz/in.
              .

              Sir John , Earl of Bligeport & Sudspumpwater. MBE [ Motor Bike Engineer ] Nottingham England.



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              • #8
                Thank you so much for looking for me. These were the points i was most worried about except i didnt know about motors. The reviews on the Shark hd 2.0 are good theyre expensive compared to machines that seem similar to my unexperienced eye.

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                • #9
                  I may also b able to reinforce and upgrade the ebay ones and after motors give up ,upgrade to the 350's. Use it as a starting point maybe.

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                  • #10
                    Anybody w a 3axis aluminum capable router mill that they like to suggest??

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                    • #11
                      At $4500?

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                      • #12
                        I think i found one. it has linear bearings,380motors,4axis cause its got 2 y axismotors/screws,water cooled spindle,gecko's 48v

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                        • #13
                          Unless you're doing mostly sheet work, a router is simply the wrong basic machine for precision cutting of metal, even aluminum, and even then it's less than ideal. If you're just cutting profiles, a plasma table can be had for around that price and can cut steel as easily (easier?) than aluminum much more effectively. Beyond 1/8" thickness I suspect anything less than an extremely sturdy router table is going to become increasingly painful.

                          If you need to mill in more than 2 axes, then I'd take a serious look at whether a used CNC knee mill might be better. You can get 24"+ on the X axis, and 10-12" on the Y, and with fixturing, that might get you where you need to be. Depending on a variety of factors these machines can often be found for ~$5000 though rigging and powering will be more work than a tiny little router. Your location says Indiana so I suspect there are a good deal of used machines to be had.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by ogre View Post
                            I think i found one. it has linear bearings,380motors,4axis cause its got 2 y axismotors/screws,water cooled spindle,gecko's 48v
                            Still 3 axis, just one is slaved.

                            You will need mist cooling at a minimum.

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                            • #15
                              Im not in production so speed isnt a priority. I have a van norman horizonral&vertical mill & a southbend 13" lathe . i dont want to cnc the van norman. i would like to engrave and make some of my harly parts and engrave my cars valve covers and air cleaner. im into guns and would like to make my own AR-15 aluminum lowers. and anything elso i do will fall into the realms of this. if u guys think i need to add the best rigid router cnc i can find then i will. if u think i need a cnc "knee" type then ill look for one.i dont know if knee mills have enough rpm to engrave but thats why im asking. i am just a disabled fu%#*% up young man that does not want to rot away wo trying to do something to keep my mind sharp. i dud automotive my whole life but cant take it anymore. Im new to cnc but have invested ALOT in tooling and gauges already for my mill and lathe. I appreciate any advice u can offer me. I would really like to find a machibe and send it to someone to look at the add to c if they think it meets all my needs but i know most dont have the time to look at the ads for me. the recent one is fom cncconversionkit on ebay and it has a lave 4th axis for the extra y motor. have an item # if someone has the time to look for me. Thanks guys!(gals)

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