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Thread: Work holding for non-vacuum tables

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
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    Denver, CO
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    5

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe View Post
    Roehm

    When carving large 3D panels, which takes several hours and done overnight,
    www.normansignco.com
    I wonder how many of us actually do this - set-up a long carve, start the machine, and go to bed. I'd love to have that much confidence but I'm not sure I'd be able to sleep. Does anyone else routinely let an unattended machine do its thing?

    My question is not meant to be criticism. If many do this, maybe I'll try it. My gut tells me many don't.

    Whattaya think?
    Scott

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Bell, Florida
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    333

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    Quote Originally Posted by kaetamer View Post
    I wonder how many of us actually do this - set-up a long carve, start the machine, and go to bed. I'd love to have that much confidence but I'm not sure I'd be able to sleep. Does anyone else routinely let an unattended machine do its thing?

    My question is not meant to be criticism. If many do this, maybe I'll try it. My gut tells me many don't.

    Whattaya think?
    Scott
    I have had a cut out part come loose and the bit spinning in it created enough heat to start my mdf deck smoldering, and with the vac hold sys running if I had been sleeping and not checking the machine I would have most certainly burned my shop to the ground !! It was red hot and I had to use water to put it out.

    So you can let yours run all night or day without watching it but I will not.

    Just my 2 cents
    Tim
    Tim Lucas Custom Woodworks
    www.TLCW.us

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Kennebunkport, Maine
    Posts
    3,763

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    +2 cents added to Tim's.
    Too much can go wrong, and shop is part of the house,and I'm not looking to join the homeless.
    scott
    Scott Plaisted
    Desktop/spindle/VCP 8.5**
    Maine

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Brooklet, Ga
    Posts
    123

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    I think way too much can go wrong to justify the time saved by running the machine unattended for hours (or even minutes for that matter). I'm always within about a 10' radius or closer from my machine while it's running.........just in case.
    2006 PRTalpha 96x48
    3hp SEV spindle
    Vcarve Pro8
    Always eager to consume large amounts of info, tips, and techniques!

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Norman, Ok
    Posts
    3,084

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    Anyone running a loud, noisy router should NOT walk away. That could burn down a shop. Ear protectors are also necessary.

    Joe

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Norman, Ok
    Posts
    3,084

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    Woops I didn't mean to down-play you router guys. Routers are excellent! They can do as good a job as a spindle and cost so much less. But these motors weren't intended for hour of non-stop continuous use. I'd never suggest the hobby folks or part timers spend extra for a spindle.

    Joe

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Location
    Wilson, NC
    Posts
    55

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    Quote Originally Posted by joe View Post
    I'd never suggest the hobby folks or part timers spend extra for a spindle.
    Joe, I must respectfully disagree on that one. I love my Desktop with spindle. The main reason is how quiet it is vs. a router. The Shopvac is louder than the Shopbot and it is no problem to have it running while I do other stuff. Listening to a router scream for hours is not my idea of fun, even with earmuffs.

    Also the spindle's high quality of cut and ability to handle occasional non-wood items, such as G-10, aluminum, and even hardened steel is a fantastic bonus. As someone that uses a SB primarily for hobby use, the increased capability keeps my machine from gathering dust.

    I'll agree that not everyone NEEDS a spindle, but it is awfully nice. I have lots of woodworking, CNC, and machining experience vs. the average new owner and can definitely say that I work on advanced projects way beyond knocking out the occasional wooden part, so I needed more than what the router could deliver. Once you have one, you'll never go back. Other than the initial $ting at purchase time, I have had ZERO regrets since the first time I heard it power on.

  8. #18
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    MA
    Posts
    227

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    Joe is the guy you outsource your CNC work to running a router or a spindle? Also, do you have any examples of some of his mechanical hold downs? I've been doing some work lately that has warranted mechanical hold downs like this one:

    IMG_20170118_095822.jpg

    I've been making a fair amount of jigs like this one lately and I'd love to see some of those examples.

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Norman, Ok
    Posts
    3,084

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    Eric,

    Let me apologize for my late response. One of my favorite mechanical hold-downs was made using Oak scraps. At one time we had a couple dozen in different sizes. The design was to look purposeful and not too mechanical. My inspiration came from looking at piano strikers.

    Yes my former employee uses a 5hp Colombo. I met him during a period when he was bending neon. It runs in the family. His father was an old time Neon fellow. That was twenty years ago. After visiting my shop several times Ron indicated the interest in dimensional signage. From there we started working
    together. He's a great guy.

    Attached Images Attached Images

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Normal ,IL
    Posts
    2

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    Thank you all for your replies and please accept my apology for neglecting this post for so long! We have been BUSY since the MFA and BFA shows at the end of the semester. I also have seven studios full of metal, wood, ceramic, and glass working equipment that needs servicing every chance we can get! (Man those students can run those machines HARD).

    The spindle vs. router argument is a real one. Especially if you are primarily going to be cutting the same material. However, we will be cutting acrylic, ceramics, foam, and plaster in addition to wood products. The ability to ramp up the RPMS to 18K has me wanting to engrave everything I can. I ran an engraving project for my wedding on a FADAL that spun to 10K and wasn't happy with the time or finish. You can see that program run https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8RwMAdg7eeI We have a dedicated 3 HP Grizzly cyclone dust collector for the Buddy which produces great velocity and volume, but, it's a *tad* loud in a room with concrete walls, floor and steel roll up door! Perfect way to make sure everyone is wearing their ears though!

    The multitude of solutions has amazed me. I would never have though to use super glue to adhere masking tape together! Brilliant!

    We have been getting by with hardwood blocks and screws for the familiarization projects we've been running so far. A vac system is absolutely out of the question due to cost. We have been using nylon 1/4"x20 bolts to secure the spoil board and they have actually impressed me quite a bit; I thought they were nothing but toys at first. I am drawn immediately to T-Slots and bolts. Simple, secure, and cheap. I also like the idea of using the accuracy of the machine to drill a matrix of undersized holes for lags to secure in. However, this wouldn't stand up to the almost industrial level use we will see at peek usage. Compounding the problem is that the footprint of a large percentage of jobs ran on the machine will be identical because the students will be working on similar projects throughout the academic calendar. I think that a spoil board with T-Slots would be a good balance of price and performance. The T-Slots would also help to control chips with vertical boards surround the work when we can't run the dust collector close enough to the tool.

    Eric and joe: I really appreciate you sharing your solutions. Their simplicity and function is elegant. I also have all the materials to replicate them! It's looking like a hybrid of your clamps with T-Slots might be the ticket.

    Our first "real" project (I'm not counting cutting foam ) was cutting some molds for our glass department. They are for a 8" decanter which required a 4" deep pocket tapering up to a ~1.5" diameter neck and mouth of the decanter. All wooden glass molds have to be fruitwood and traditionally cherry. The density of the grain holds up to the stress of spending it's life submerged in water then subject to the heat of the molten glass. I had to use an extended 0.500" and 0.250" CBEM for the large pocket and standard length for the neck. I need to improve my V Carve skills as I could not get the finishing pass to follow the geometry of the roughing pass; the finishing tool had to travers the entire face of the mold when doing the finishing pass. I have been spoiled by MasterCam7 and need to study V Carve to make my programs more efficient.

    Decanter_Mold.jpg


    My only beef with the ShopBot is the software and lack of a Control Box on the machine. I know this isn't a CNC Mill, but, I'm used to a FANUC or FADAL controller. It can be frustrating not to be able to control the machine directly like one can with a proper CNC control box in regards to speeds/feeds and offsets. However, I can appreciate that the increase in price would be a huge percentage of the current cost of the machine. The thing that makes it frustrating is that our control software freezes every time I try to decrease or increase speeds with the keyboard shortcuts. I've just gone through and manually edited code which is something students WILL NOT be doing! I'm hoping this is just a computer issue. I know I have A LOT to learn between V Carve and the ShopBot language, so, I'm counting this complaint as user error.

    This was my last machine after I moved out of the FADAL cell. That's if you don't count the monster Okuma that had a bad attitude: the spindle would randomly stop while the table was moving! We ran it for P.O.s for a specific part line for a energy company that starts with a "W" and ends with the name of an American car manufacturer. (Sorry, I had to pay the bills!)
    Yama Seiki.jpg
    Last edited by Roehm; 07-13-2017 at 04:12 PM. Reason: Added thank you to ALL who responded!

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