Thursday, February 15, 2018

Desktop DIY laptop controlled 3-axis CNC Mill



Description


This page describes my DIY laptop controlled 3-axis CNC Mill. It has been an amazing project and a fun build. The below table is a breakdown of costs associated with the project. The Proxxon mill I got was a return with cosmetic damage that was marked down from the original price. I used a stepper motor adapter kit to attach nema-17 motors to the X,Y, and Z controls of the mill. The nema-17 motors work well, but can slow down slightly sometimes. I may upgrade to nema-23 motors for more torque. The laptop I'm using connects to the stepper motor controller board using a parallel cable. The software I am using is Mach 3. So far most of the limitations I have run into are related to software. I have been able to mill metal using g-code. I have used a bit with 0.5 mm diameter and got excellent precision. I have also cut stepper motor mounts out of aluminum and brass using this setup. The Proxxon mill is capable of cutting steel and titanium metal. The control board and power supply are mounted with a standoff to a plastic container with machine bolts and locking nuts. There is a 12V fan attached to the case near the the control board heat sink. The 12 wires used for the stepper motors are wrapped in braided sleeving cable organizer.




Cost




Item Quantity Cost
Subtotal
mill bits 1 0.6
0.6
wires 3 0.5
1.5
computer cable 1 4
4
power switch 1 5
5
fan 1 5
5
container 1 6
6
controller 1 7
7
screws 20 0.6
12
power supply 1 25
25
proxxon vice 1 25
25
Nema 17 motors 3 16
48
motor controller board 1 50
50
Nema 17 motor mounts 1 70
70
ebay(fees) 1 73
73
laptop w/parallel(used ebay) 1 80
80
shipping 1 80
80
software 1 250
250
Proxxon mill 1 470
470





stand 1 25 (optional)
tax


96.968





total


1308.468


Image Gallery


Proxon MF 70 mill


Stepper motor control board and 12v power supply




 IBM laptop running mach 3

  
Example token cut out of brass metal. The design ended up slightly offset in this test. A 0.5mm endmill was used to create the design and it is 1mm in depth.

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