Tube-O-Matic

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ScaleBirdsScott

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Been doing research into commercial level CNC routers and the possibilities of something with ATC.

Came across this video, and this seems like a machine a lot like what I was envisioning for a more 'purpose built' T-O-M machine that would stand alone; just at a much more industrial scale and setup more as a turning center.


I'm thinking that giving this overall design the "hobby grade" treatment using more extrusion and such, and maybe omitting the ATC for a standard low-cost spindle, and then printing up Fritz' T-O-M headstock and bearing array, one could stretch this whole thing to any desired length. Also if one was dealing with strictly tubing which is consistent diameter, you might be able to get away without needing full surround bearings between the headstock and tailstock and just having little adjustable roller rests that support underneath the tubing during drilling ops. This prevents you needing to remember where your supports are.
 

addicted2climbing

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Fritz,
Did you ever build this and test it? Might need to build one this summer and curious if you managed to get the software sorted out to do it as well.
Marc
 

FritzW

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I'm working on a slightly more industrial version of it for a local kit manufacture. The hardware was no problem but I've just started sorting out the software. I don't think the CAM will be an issue but I have to get his CAD issues sorted out first.

...I had to sign a NDA (for other reasons) so I better to talk to him before I post any details.
 

Gene Young

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Jan 19, 2020
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Earlier in the thread you were discussing bits gumming up with aluminum, and you couldn't run coolant on the MDF bed.
Here is a solution to that problem.
https://fogbuster.com/
I have one and I use a vegetable oil based lubricant in it, It works really well. You can turn it down low where it just puts out the faintest amount of lube to keep aluminum from sticking the the mill, but not dripping everywhere. Also the air blast clears the chips so they don't get re-cut which makes the gumming up process worse.
 

addicted2climbing

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I'm working on a slightly more industrial version of it for a local kit manufacture. The hardware was no problem but I've just started sorting out the software. I don't think the CAM will be an issue but I have to get his CAD issues sorted out first.

...I had to sign a NDA (for other reasons) so I better to talk to him before I post any details.
Wow congrats. My guess is when its all said and done the software wont be available to us on HBA? I have seen industrial routers form China that have a rotary mounted alongside it for this very process but on a larger scale, ie tube size.
 

FritzW

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The software that's "an issue" are the CAD files for the helicopter itself, ie. the old CAD files he inherited with the company.

The CAM software will be off the shelf. Hobby level folks have lots of affordable software options for rotory axis work. When I nail down what software we're going to use I'll post the info here.

So far I've been focusing on far less exciting, but more urgent, projects like tail rotor angle jigs and a fixture to measure matched drive belts ...yawn
 

addicted2climbing

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The software that's "an issue" are the CAD files for the helicopter itself, ie. the old CAD files he inherited with the company.

The CAM software will be off the shelf. Hobby level folks have lots of affordable software options for rotory axis work. When I nail down what software we're going to use I'll post the info here.

So far I've been focusing on far less exciting, but more urgent, projects like tail rotor angle jigs and a fixture to measure matched drive belts ...yawn
Hello Fritz,

Glad to hear this is still progressing. I will be building a router to cut 5' x 10' material this summer. I am hoping to extend the upper gantry over to the side of the machine and have the rotary mounted there permanently. Also in the midst of designing an ultra large 3D printer with a 4' x 5' work area. These are the last two tools I need to set myself up to build kits.

Marc
 

FritzW

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I hope you post a build log on both machines. They sound like very interesting projects.

Also in the midst of designing an ultra large 3D printer with a 4' x 5' work area.
If your looking for inspiration the HyperCube Evolution might be worth looking at. You might even be able to use the same parts with longer extrusions.
 

jandetlefsen

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Apr 9, 2020
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You could just replace the cutter bit with a sharpie and have a pretty useful solution.
 
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