Archive for January, 2011


New (new) Z axis begun

January 31, 2011

So, after I struggled with the flexibility of MDF for a while (the V-Groove bearings were working themselves loose) I decided to bite the bullet and begin the all-alum buildup. As a test, I decided to do the simplest part. The Z axis.

So, I got a 16mm sheet of 5083 Alum custom cut from Action Aluminum. It is 190mm x 300mm x 16mm.

I promptly drilled the holes,

Tapped the thread to accept 1/4 inch (V-groove bearings were bought in the US.)

And mounted it to the machine. I must say the rigidity has increased tenfold. Amazing.


Polycarb RC ship frame

January 16, 2011

Main frame with turrets, battery, some electronics and the CO2 cylinder attached.So, here we have the frame piece we have been designing for some time now. It’s really starting to come together. Some more work is needed, such as electronics wire routing, pneumatic routing and the ballast pump etc, but the basic shape is done. The frame ‘clips’ inside the hull so that we can quickly pull the frame out and work on it separate to the hull. Should make for easy modifications and maintenance.

The tail detail showing the remote rudder control, and the rear servo mount for the turret rotationSome detail of the rear section (stern that is). The yellow tube you see has a push-rod system in it, which allows us to remotely control the rudders. Hopefully as the rear sinks, the rudder control servo is still dry and hence the ship still functions correctly. Using polycarbonate means that the frame is bulletproof, and also makes maintenance easy because you can see any issues! This piece was milled on the CNC machine (Actually, it was milled incorrectly on the CNC machine, the next revision will be slightly taller.

Front detail showing the front servo mount, and the handles/access holes for the cylinder.Detail of the front of the ship showing the front servo mount (servo is a winch servo which permits full rotation of the turrets) and the access hole for the bottle and regulator. Here, you can also clearly see the detail of the cuts that are made with the CNC machine.

Using QCAD for the design, and Vectric Cut2D for the Gcode creation.Here, you can see the CAD design used to create the main central piece. Using a DXF compatible editor makes this process a snap.


Dust collection finally!

January 14, 2011

The dust collection, fresh out of the box.I have just bought a 1HP Dust Collection unit, and I am hoping that once it is properly attached, it will eliminate most of the dust and chips. Its a Carba-Tec unit. Pretty basic configuration, with a 5 micron filter. One day I will get a 1 micron filter, but for now the standard one is a million times better than nothing.

A few blast gates positioned in proper locations, and I will be able to use the collection for the bench tools (Drill press, Drop Saw etc), for the power tools (belt sander, jigsaw etc) the CNC and the table saw. I have tested the table saw and I must say, I should have done it earlier!

Only problem I am getting is getting a perfect seal between the DC components (blast gates, T junction etc) and the 100mm PVC. The fittings are pretty good, but nowhere near sealed. (Sealant? Glue? Duct tape?) Currently using Duct tape which works pretty well, but not great.


New Z Axis mount

January 12, 2011

Switched on viewers will note that this photo is back-dated. Youc an see the dust collection system in the background.In the aim to make the Z axis a bit more rigid, I have created a new piece. It was milled on the machine itself, and then glued together. Seems to be much more rigid, and provides a better base for me to attach my soon to be dust collection system. Still have some flexibility in the axis which I hope to deal with one day by upgrading the bearing mounts to 8mm aluminum.