View Full Version : Types of Materials the ShopBot will Cut

03-27-2001, 09:30 PM
I am in the process of purchasing the ShopBot and am looking at how many types of materials it will work with. I know acrylics, woods, aluminum but will it cut sheet metal, what thickness? I would like to hear from some sign shops that have the ShopBot and how much they like it.

Thanks in advance
Jeff Clericuzio

03-28-2001, 06:05 PM
Jeff. I've had my SB for about 15mos. and have used it to make numerous signs, mostly routing 15lb SignFoam HDU, but also some redwood, cedar, pine, Honduras mahogany, and rift cut white oak venered MDF(for two interior signs). You can see some of my work and a description under "model signs" under "ShopBots at work" on this website. I love the machine, but it is still just a tool, albeit a very sophisticated one. Since it is computer run, it has all the advantages and frustrations of working with computers. But I still often just watch in awe as it cuts the thousands of command lines (and actual lines) in routing a sign. The company provides great support, as does the community of SB users on this website. I too want to learn and do more with my SB, such as cutting metal and stone. I hand carve limestone, marble, and slate, and want to find a way to use the SB, preferably to v cut at depth, but if that won't work, then to at least lightly etch a stone for quick layout for hand carving. I imagine some soft, thin metal should be cutable with the router, but steel would need a plasma cutter, which some SB owners do. This website is where we should keep exchanging info with other SB owners. There are folks here who know a lot more than I do and I learn something new almost every time I log in.

03-28-2001, 09:27 PM
I've cut out 1/16" thick brass with a 1/4" carbide upcut spiral bit . it worked O.K. but the edges were a little rough . ---Does anybody have any ideas on a different type of cutter that might produce a smoother cut in brass ??

03-28-2001, 10:44 PM
I haven't tried brass on my shopbot yet, but I profile stacks of .025" and sometimes 3/8" on an overarm router using a 3/4" straight edge trim bit. The 3/8" machines really well. The .025" stacks have to be clamped between two dies, even then, the top and bottom layers burr quite a bit, the inside layers are not so bad. I think vibration is the major problem.

You might try using a straight bit and that doesn't work smooth enough, try having it re-ground with a neutral rake. I do this with my drill bits and it drills much smoother.

05-19-2001, 07:04 PM
Is anyone cutting aluminum backs for channel letters? I am interested in how well this will cut .063 (and thicker) alum. Also is the expensive routers shown on the price options necessary or will any good commercial router work? Finally is anyone using graphics advantage plot files as the source file for routing?

10-05-2001, 01:33 AM
I intend to buy a SB, but first of all I would like to know if this machine can cut, drill, engrave on light metals (aluminum, brass, or copper) or stone. If is anyone can help me with information or pictures don't hesitate to send me.

Thank you.

10-05-2001, 11:48 AM
Hi Balsanu, A SB cannot cut anything. You must attach a cutting tool/machine to the SB and then the SB will move your cutting tool/machine to any position that you program. You can select many different cutting tools or machines; wood routers, laser cutter, plasma cutter, vinyl knife, etc.