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Hi guys and girls,
Here is my new Gatton wood CNC that I built over a few weekends. I'd like to thank Dave for his fast shipping of the kit parts and the great plans that are provided. Just a glance at the plans and off I went building this baby. All is extremely well documented and visually clear to understand.
i was originally going to build a CNC out of aluminum extrusion and machine all the parts. Since I hadn't built any CNC before.. I thought...hey !! why not try with wood first and see how that goes.
Well, I must say, I am really please with the outcome. yes I could probably drive it much faster on rack & pinions but I am not in production mode while in retirement...lol But I get movement of the axis without backlash or shattering in the 350IPM. That's without really understanding Mach 3 that well. I ran a CNC Shark 12x24 for 5 years and built some pretty intricate projects with that size of a CNC and a Bosh 1hp trim router...lol
Now on this Gatton CNC, I have a 3HP spindle, air cooled driven by steppers and controllers by CNCrouterParts, Nema 23/420OZ and a smoothstepper. I really appreciate the power of that spindle and the noise level is so low....just love it.
I made two changes to the Gatton CNC plans. The first was to extend the gantry to 70", giving me full access to the table on the X axis (like 53" of cutting area) and on the Y I have full access as well since I built the table 5' x 5'. So I can hang a work piece off the front as well for dovetailing or maybe building a 4th axis off the bed of the CNC. I am thinking a narrow shelf like on a long hinge that I can put up for 4th axis work, or down out of the way for 3 axis work. i am currently designing this part in Fusion 360. I will share so I can get some input....more heads is better than one...lol
As for software, I use Mach3 for running the CNC. For design, I use many different software (Aspire, Artcam, Ensignia, Coreldraw and Fusion 360).
I will work with that CNC for a while then my next add-on will be a Laser engraver and a 4th axis.
So that's about it ... I hope that describes a bit about my Gatton CNC project. I would say about 30 hours over 2 weekends and 90% was up and running.
Thanks guys. and again thanks to Dave Gatton for all his efforts and involvement in teaching the art of CNC building.