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Thread: Disassembly?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Poling Guitars, Columbus Ohio
    Posts
    26

    Default Disassembly?

    I have been thinking for some time about getting a buddy. It is too big to go into my basement shop though.

    How easy/hard would it be to partially disassemble it to get it to my basement and set it up again.

    I have no CNC skills and and brand new to all of this.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    New Bern, NC
    Posts
    94

    Default

    I would think that if you have some mechanical skills and are used to working with normal hand tools that it should be no problem. It is a shame that you do have to dissasemble the machine since it is put together so well. However, keep in mind that all of the bigger machines are shipped dissasembled and have to be put together by the owner. After all of this, when you get up and running, and this will take a little while, you will be happy with the results and will be looking for things to do next with your machine. joe

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    684

    Default

    How much would you have to take apart? The gantry on the buddy would come off pretty easy. The only hard part about putting it back on is squaring it up which with a piece of scrap and a couple hours isn't too hard.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Poling Guitars, Columbus Ohio
    Posts
    26

    Default

    I need to get it through a 28" doorway, make an immediate left, through another 28" doorway and take it down a flight of stairs that doubles back about half way down.

    :-S

    I have only gone off the specs posted, but it seems that if the legs would come off and I could stand it verticle I could get the table and the gantry system down without any problem.

    But I really don't know much about how it is put together.

    My guess is these are separate units bolted together, but then again, I am brand spanking new to CNC.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    684

    Default

    Sounds like pure hell to me Brock...are you looking to get a bt48 or a bt32? I would still say your best bet (without seeing your situation) is to remove the gantry. The won't really come off without you taking apart the whole table while you're doing it. I would have 4 of your biggest friends over that day also. It can be done...but you need to plan this out. Someone could get hurt pretty bad catching even just a chunk of this machine.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Poling Guitars, Columbus Ohio
    Posts
    26

    Default

    Yeah, I know. I have moved some pretty serious tools down there before. My neighbors run when they see me coming. ;-)

    I am looking at the 32. I build guitars and mostly I am looking at the CNC to help me develop custom tooling, and perhaps a few parts. Most of the work is pretty small.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    New Bern, NC
    Posts
    94

    Default

    Maybe ShopBot will ship you the machine dissassembled and you can just put it together like the larger machines. If you do take it apart, I would try to not disconnect any of the wiring from the drive motors. I think this is pretty particular. Why don't you go to the ShopBot web site and download their assembly instructions for the regular machines and then you will get an idea of how they are put together. joe

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Tulsa Oklahoma
    Posts
    1,237

    Default

    Brock- Even if all you plan to cut is small stuff, you will find that the shopbot gets used for many more things than you can ever imagine. In the "lutherie" world material comes in small sizes and the 32 will work great, but in the "structural" world sheet material comes in four foot widths.

    Seriously consider a bt-48 over a bt-32. I own a bt-32 and really wish they had an upgrade to a 48 in order to handle standard plywood, plastics, etc easier. I now have a 4' powerstick and I use it for that purpose, but it would be better if the bot could just handle it on the 2' table.

    When I make small parts, I usually use the whole table to make several of them in one batch job. This is another time when "bigger is better".

    The Buddies are extremely good at cutting precision small stuff because their gantry is so rigid. This is something you will really appreciate when you have your running.

    Good luck with your bot-

    D

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Vankleek Hill, ON
    Posts
    856

    Default

    Brock,

    I have the BT32 with the aluminum plate table, apparently the currently shipped ones don't. I took a look at mine and unless something else has changed significantly besides that, I'd say it's a straight forward procedure.

    The table is designed to slide off very easily and quickly so that's not an issue.

    The most cumbersome part will be lifting the gantry/Z axis assembly off and getting it down the stairs. It's about 175 lbs I think but don't quote me. The awkward part will involve having a third person carrying the control box and not getting in the way as the job will be much easier not having to open up the control box to disconnect and reconnect a bunch of wires, especially if you're new to it. If leaving it tethered like that is too risky, you can also removed the shrink wrap seals that join the male/female connectors outside the box but you'd want to replace those. Shopbot could perhaps leave them off and let you mount them - this being probably the best/safest approach. The cables are color coded on mine.

    Personally, I'd make up a "toboggan" to strap the gantry assembly onto so you can slide it down the stairs held by a come-along or similar (with no one in front!) There may be better ideas though.

    It looks like the most practical way to partially disassembly the remaining frame into about 4-5 sub-assemblies. This involves nothing more than readily accessible nuts and bolts. The key would be to get Shopbot to advise you one which parts are best to leave together in each subassembly so as to minimize realignment needs or difficulties. I'd also ask them about torque wrench settings.

    My guess would be a perhaps 2-3 hours from crate to full reassembly, not including any alignment fine-tuning. 3 good strong guys and up-to-date insurance if you're man-handling the parts downstairs. Double-indemnity if you plan on standing in front going down :-) On a scale of 1-10 I'd give the process (excepting any realignment) about a 3. Personally, I use a very fine tip, water washable marker to mark both sides of all separation points before loosening any bolts, being certain to always keep the angle of the marker the same and the tip snug in.

    All that said, remember that I'm a newbie and have not actually disassembled my Buddy. If I were in your shoes I'd use the forum to find someone with an identical model as close as possible and arrange to go evaluate - be sure to take a digital camera with lots of room on the card for lots of pic's. some even let you add voice notes to specific pics. I'm a full day drive away from you in Belleville, ON but you'd be welcome if you were coming this way, of course.

    Good luck, Gerry

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    684

    Default

    I'm with Dana on the size issue. When I first was looking I was going to buy the bt32 at that time is was on intro pricing of $3999, but saw they were coming out with the BT48, but it was $1900 more (which was a lot harder to justify). After a lot of thinking I decided in the long run the 4' width would be very useful since a lot of what I use the Buddy for is done with sheet material. It also gives you nearly 3 square feet more working area. I think for the mechanically inclined person Gerald is right...about a 3 on the "oh poo" scale...but I think you are looking at more like a full day from crate to reassembly. Plus I would set a side another 4 hours for tweaking and squaring. Hopefully Gerry is right...either way if you are comfortable with your hands and take your time...you will get it done. Still sounds like hell to me though! I remember putting together my PRT. I was all by myself and 23 years old. No CAD/CAM or CNC background...not to mention...putting together a CNC...I have to admit, a few things flew across the garage that would have been better left on the work bench! It definitely taught me a few things about machinery and maturity.

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