Blog

4×4 CNC – more updates

Things are running well, seen here cutting some new tool holder storage inserts.

See the finished piece after the break.

(more…)

Next CNC Class

zombomeme06012017113715

You will have a nice little machine to take home and make projects with. Jan -21-22, 2017.

RSVP here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/build-a-cnc-machine-from-kit-and-learn-how-to-run-it-tickets-30034799895

 

CNC Sunday space ship cutting

If you are interested in CNC routers, and making complex shapes come join us on Sunday afternoons from 2:00 – 4:00 where we discuss and do all things CNC. For the last two weeks I’ve been working on cutting out a model to put in the lobby display case, so I have an answer to the question, “what can you do with it”.

What would you like to do with a CNC? Come talk with us next Sunday. Subscribe to the TC Maker google group for updates on meeting times, and themes for the day.

Pete

SD_top_finish

CNC height map creation process

I’ve had some questions on how to set the parameters in ImagetoGcode, an application built into LinuxCNC, the control software used for some (soon to be all ūüôā ) CNC routers at the Hack Factory. There are lots of ways you can do this, and your material, application, and bit size all play a role in getting the settings correct. I’ve been cutting a series of lithophanes on my router over the last month or so, so I’ll be going over how I determine what settings to use for them.
For these lithophanes I have a set finish size in mind which is 5″ tall max, and a format of ethier 5″ x 5″ or 5″ x 7″. I know from experience that in Corian, I want to have about an 1/8″ or a little less of depth variation for the images, and I want to use a pixel size of about .005, which is the same size as my bit.

Here’s the ImagetoGcode screen with the settings for one of the planet lithophanes I’ve created.
Moon_ImagetoGcode

(more…)

CNC Interest Group meet-up

The CNC Interest Group meet-up will happen again this Sunday 6/21/2015 2:00 PM at the Hack Factory. It is open to everyone, but machine use requires membership. If you have been wanting to get a project cut on a CNC or get checked out on the CNC machines, this is where you want to be to get the process started. Hope to see a good group of folks Sunday.

Pete

Shake-mold-finishing

CNC Interest Group meet-up

We will be having the first, of what I hope will be many, CNC Interest Group meet-ups this Sunday 6/7/2015 2:00 PM at the Hack Factory. It is open to everyone, but machine use requires membership. The agenda is rather loose, but will likely include, updates on the CNC area, the status of the 4 CNC routers at the Hack Factory. Information on how you can get checked out to use the CNC Routers.
We’ll also be plodding through some of the lovely features of Autodesk Fusion 360s CAM module, and have some cutting demos.

If you have been wanting to get a project cut on a CNC or get checked out on the CNC machines, this is where you want to be to get the process started. Hope to see a good group of folks Sunday.

Pete

Shake-mold-finishing

3D relief carving of the TC Maker logo

3D Carving the TC Maker Logo

Shapeoko: It’s alive!

Thanks to the folks who helped put our Shapeoko CNC together. Last Saturday evening, Mark and Pete helped me assemble the hardware. Then on Wednesday, Bill put the belts on, and Jim and Adam ran the wiring and hooked up the electronics. We ran the “Hello World” test with a pencil jury-rigged in place of the rotary tool. Success!

Now it’s time to dial it in and start getting some experience on it. CNC people, let me know if you want to play with it. Not a CNC person? Hang tight¬†while the Shapeoko gets calibrated, then we’ll start turning other loose on it.

Time to make a Shapeoko!

shapeoko-kitIf you haven’t heard yet, the kind folks at Inventables have donated a Shapeoko desktop CNC kit to Twin Cities Maker. The kit arrived Thursday afternoon — time to put it together!

We’ll be starting out at 5pm tomorrow, Saturday 6/21. If you’re interested in helping out, please come on by. There will be something for everyone to do. Of course if you just want to hang out, that’s cool too. The more the merrier!

Computer Aided Design, Sunday June 15th

Computer-Aided Design (CAD) programs are powerful sets of tools for designing anyMystery Gear Devicething from toys to furniture to mechanical devices. CAD can speed up your work immensely and help you make sure parts are aligned and properly fitted. But these awesome features are often hidden behind unfamiliar terminology and confusing user interfaces. To help you wade through all this and make stuff faster, Graham will be running a CAD class at the Hack Factory this Sunday, June 15th! The course will cover:

  • Different CAD programs and their capabilities (which program do I need?)
  • Solid Modeling
  • Modeling¬†for a Laser Cutter or Waterjet

To sign up for the class, head on over to the registration page on Eventbrite

Intro to CNC: Sunday, March 9

3D relief carving of the TC Maker logo

Twin Cities Maker has three CNC machines at the Hack Factory. For those who don’t know, a CNC machine is a computer-controlled router which you can use to carve out all sorts of 2D and 3D items. They take a bit of training to be able to use, so Matt is running a class this Sunday!

The  course covers the fundamentals of using the large CNC Router:

  • Safety
  • Materials you can and can’t use.
  • Powering up and shutting down.
  • Basic use of the Vectric’s Cut2D software which makes cut paths.
  • Basic use of Mach3 software which controls the router.
  • Basic uses and advantages of router bits.

To sign up for the class, head over to the registration page at Eventbrite.