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Thread: fiber upgrade, sorta

  1. #1

    fiber upgrade, sorta

    Ever since I was a kid I've been kicking and moving an old, heavy milling machine turret around this place. I ran into it the other day and thought, hmmm...

    My Ebay2 machine in the garage shop is my 'most versatile' machine since it's a desk model. With it, I can rotate the scanhead tower 90 so the head overhangs the desks left edge, allowing me to engrave really tall and other obnoxious sized stuff. The main problem is simply the unbolting of the tower and rotating it. I CAN re-bolt it down to the same mounting holes, but usually I move the tower to the right (or down depending on point of view), so the tower's base only covers about half of the hole in the hole in the desk. Then I just C-clamp the edge of the hole and tower down. The tower is remarkably balanced even with a monitor attached to it (or BECAUSE it's attached to it!)-- Anyway, from there it's a matter of placing/holding the part to be engraved and alignment. Had to do this today because, I had some 6"-ish diameter cylinder shaped parts to part and serial number, across the radius. Because OF the radius, to stay in focus I need to use my 420/300 lens, which allows nearly 1/2" plus/minus of focus range. But the problem with this lens is focus distance from lens-to-work is 18-1/2", and the tower maxes out at about 22", meaning I can only engrave 3-1/2" or less tall items with this lens.

    So I swapped the tower into position and ran the parts, then thought, why don't I grab that turret and figure out how to bolt the tower to it?

    So here's the turret, it's 3-3/4" tall and weighs like 40 pounds or so. Turned out the tower base plate holes overshot the T-slots on the turret, but I have a ton of spare 1x3 x 1/8" thick steel plates around here, which fit the T slots perfectly. I just extended the plates out enough to C-clamp the base to them...

    So now it's just a few turns of the turret crank to go from 'normal'-

    -to rotated 90-

    Works great! And, the height of turret gives me enough room that, for the parts I just finished, I don't NEED to rotate it! And the turret means I don't need to tweak machine angles in the EzCad F3 menu, I can just turn the knob...

    I do need to swap out the two C-clamps for four nuts/bolts to firmly anchor the tower to the turret, but for now it's okay. The turret/tower is so heavy (and well balanced) that I don't really need to bolt it down to the table, takes a lot of effort to move it as it is. But our recent earthquake fun tells me I need to at least figure out how anchor it down to at least prevent an errant tip-over.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    NW Arkansas
    Blog Entries
    Looks like it will work fine. I did a piece the other day that a young man had made for his dad. A solid 4x4 inch piece of stainless steel for a hammer head and a 2 inch diameter rod for a handle. It weighed over 60 pounds. He wanted engravings on both long flat sides and on top and bottom side of the head. The sides were easy, and the bottom side was fine as well. But dang the top... In the center of the top. Uh, it was 30 inches long. Won't fit under the laser... How dumb I can be .... Well I was able to unbolt the rail, slide it forward as far as it would go and then support the hammer off the edge of my bench/laser bed. Got it done, without too much issue, and laser back square. Your devise would make it simple.
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