One evening of CAD. One evening of CAM. One evening of CNC. And it fit together (quite well). This is just held together with precisely located wooden dowel pins. We will add screws tomorrow.
The only missing piece is the actual guide for running the blocks through. That is separate so that it can be “dialed in” to the perfect cutting depth.
After years of making the same part repeatedly on the CNC router, I finally decided it was time to make the router load it’s own material.
Friction is a valid way to hold a part for routing. That is how most vices and clamps work. The key here is to calculate an amount of friction that will resist the cutting forces while at the same time keeping it low enough for the router to be able to overcome it while loading and unloading.
I’ll post more on this when we have it working. For now, here is a cool picture of the jig.
The inside of the barrel tumbler needs a polygon (made from wood) in order to (a) give enough “traction” to turn the contents, and (b) protect the barrel from repeated impacts. I’m going to use Oak or Maple to do this. Based on the width and thickness of available material, I chose a 9-sided polygon.
Here is a picture of the CAM operation prepared using Fusion 360. I will make nine of these with just a fraction of an inch extra that I can remove on the jointer while getting a tight fit.
Here is a screenshot of some of the parts we’ve designed for the Stain Dipper. All of the mechanical parts are in the design and correctly positioned and all the hardware has been ordered…
Here are several of the parts from Fusion 360
Here is a servo motor mount and custom made pulley.
Here is a small piece of Nylon used to connect a 1/16″ cable with a aluminum tube.
The Stain Dipper is taking shape one component at a time. We have the servo controller, servo motor, brass for pulleys, bearings, blocks of UHMW Polyethylene for supports, taps, set screws, aluminum rods, shafts, an Arduino Mega, buttons, switches, power supplies, wire, and more…
Here are some views of the upper pulley system.
We’ve been doing some research into air knives and considering ways to make staining of thousands of small parts faster. Dip it into the stain, and have a captive air knife blow the excess off (dripping back into the bucket) as the part is pulled out.
The PVC tube will be hinged so it can be opened for cleaning. The air knife assembly will be near the top of the tube.
Did some checking on PVC compatibility with stain and it seems to be acceptable: https://www.berlinpackaging.com/insights/chemical-guidelines-for-plastic/
Here is a possible air knife kit. http://www.exair.com/index.php/products/air-wipes/super-air-wipe/saw-kit.html
Now just need to design the servo motor mounts, air knife mount, and misc. other structural components.
I was teaching Zech (11) how to model in Fusion 360. We made a nice 3D render of some play houses.