I recently ran dry on projects, so I figured now’s as good a time as any to do some upgrades I’ve been considering for a while. These include a new z-axis, dust collection, WebControl, spindle control, and touch plate. I did a lot of lurking and figuring out what worked, and while none of the ideas here are new, I’m pretty pleased with my implementation and the fact that everything worked the first time!
I purchased a Raspberry Pi 4, C-beam, timing belt/pulley kit, optically isolated relay, and some odds and ends. I also happened to get lucky and score some scrapped parts from work: NEMA enclosure, e-stop button, cord grips, heavy gauge extension cord, and aluminum L-brackets.
I used the C-beam without modification, though I had to completely disassemble and reassemble it, since it was not even close to properly adjusted. The pulleys and belts are essentially bolt-on - had to bore one out. I cut back and drilled new holes in the motor bracket to mount it on the back of the C-beam. I cut the router clamp from some 3/4" scrap pine I had laying around, alternated grain direction on the layers and glued and pinned them together. We’ll see how long it lasts, but at least now I can cut a new one with the more accurate z-axis.
Put my lofting skills to use designing an adapter that connects my shop vac with the vacuum plate that came with the router plunge base. Why mess with something that works? The adapter is 3D printed in PET-G and fits like a glove. Now the wife wont complain about MDF dust all over the car.
Used all the freebies I got and moved the brain and added a Pi to a larger enclosure. Added spindle control via 15 amp optically isolated (non solid state) relay. I threw in the touch plate for good measure using some old CAT5, a couple magnets from and old hard drive and a steel ruler. If I had know those two add-ons were soooooo easy, I’d have done them long ago.
Now I just need some more things to cut!