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CNC Shark Forum • View topic - Steps so Top Adjustments are not Needed

Steps so Top Adjustments are not Needed

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Steps so Top Adjustments are not Needed

Postby bill z » Mon May 22, 2017 9:37 am

Another topic on this forum is about lubricating the Y axis on a Shark. That posting has some good ideas on lubricating the screw and rails. My biggest concern is how to remove and reinstall the CNC top the easiest with a minimum of recalibration.

Again, I started this topic so I would not be hijacking that thread but to deal with what I see as a real work effort.

What are some ideas out there to simplify removing and reattaching the top after managing to Y axis issues?

My, unmodified from Next Wave Automation, CNC Shark Pro Plus HD has extruded aluminum sections that come all apart when removing to access the Y axis drive pieces to clean and lubricate. After putting it all back together, then working several angles and passes with the router not turned on to measure tolerances, takes the better part of a half of a day. Just not something one looks forward to doing. At times it is real frustrating.

What are some of the ideas out there that will greatly help and make this operation less effort and painful?

Is there such a thing as a one piece top with some sort of alien screws to adjust levels? Then a 24 by 30 inch table top may sag if not supported enough.
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Re: Steps so Top Adjustments are not Needed

Postby sharkcutup » Mon May 22, 2017 3:25 pm

I do not believe there has been a designed/engineered a way of removing/replacing the table top with little-to-no adjustments thereby saving precious time.

Maybe that could be something that you might want to delve into!!! :idea:

The only reason to go that deep into the bed is if something is terribly wrong with the table top or the y-axis components. And of course if something that drastic was to occur I would definitely want to take the time to make sure everything has been returned to its proper working order, levelness, etc...

Do not know what else to say. Maybe someone else on this forum may have some words of wisdom to share with you.

Have a GREAT DAY!!! :D

Be SAFE around those AWESOME machines!!! ;)

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Re: Steps so Top Adjustments are not Needed

Postby Rando » Mon May 22, 2017 4:29 pm

As one of a few designated "djorks of overkill", I will say I don't do any of that. Instead, I take a small long piece of wood, and I tape one of those cheap "chip brushes" to it. Then, I saturate the bristles with whatever oil I'm using. With the gantry jogged to one extreme, and the jog controls in hand, I put the brush in front of the axis motion, and let the leadscrew-following block push the brush from one end to the other. When it reaches the other end, I put the brush (maybe add more oil, your choice) on the other side of the follower block, and jog all the way to the other side. You get the idea ;-).

It's simple, and seems to work fine. I've never really found that much gets down under the system, but that might be because I put about 6" of clear, 0.020" thick acrylic sheet around the entire bed to keep the cut chips inside and on the bed.

To make it so you can remove them at will, you'll need to essentially "reverse" the bolts for the extrusions you want to easily remove. Right now, there are t-bolts with shakeproof (nylon insert) nuts. But, one of the reasons they won't just slide out is that the bolts won't easily slide in the t-tracks all that way. So, I'd take the entire thing apart, then put a t-nut into track, and then use a short hex bolt, washer and lockwasher (lockwasher under head of bolt, flat washer against the angle bracket underside) to hold it in place. If you have any of those cool orange earplugs, once you establish the proper location for the t-nut, squeeze one of those earplugs into the t-track on either side. You might even get away with forcing the earplug UNDER the T-nut to hold it in place. That way when you slide those tracks in and out, you should be able to do so without the t-nut moving. All that said, I'm not at the machine right now, so it could get strange at the "other" end of the bed; I'm thinking from memory about the end where the motor is. I'll take a look when I get home this evening, and get back (in this message).

I agree with sharkcutup that it would be interesting to see a workable solution. I can think of DOZENS of reasons why I wish I had a VISE down there instead of the aluminum bed, but the HDPE doesn't have t-slots ;-) . I think the Legacy Arty (Arty Legacy?) implements a similar feature, since IIRC their 4th axis is actually "under" the bed, making such removal necessary.

Regards,

Thom
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Re: Steps so Top Adjustments are not Needed

Postby bill z » Tue May 23, 2017 8:06 am

Just some thoughts here even though I'm not an engineer and most everything I make has so much slop that I frequently surprise myself that it actually comes together:

I was thinking of making some sort of torsion box top where most of the torsion box hung down to not lose too much gantry space. The assumption here is that the torsion box would retain proper relationship (symmetry) all of the time (Yes, dissect the word assume). At the edges of the box there would be alien adjustment screws that would allow minor adjustments to set distance from table top to router.

Just thinking about this, most all of us use a waste board anyway, so the top really doesn’t have to have so many hold down variations. That task holding stuff down could be the waste board’s job. The top would only need, maybe, a dozen hold down points to hold the waste board and the waste board would have the T tracks or whatever.

The beauty of such tops is that you could make several different tops to use depending on the project. One may be designed with a hole to incorporate a vice device. On ether side of the Y screw there may be enough room to put a vice. If it were easy to change out, then folks would be willing to change more often.

Thom, I do like your idea of the heavy plastic sides to keep out the dust from under there. You have such great ideas. I'm guessing, to install the plastic, I'd have to remove part of the top.
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Re: Steps so Top Adjustments are not Needed

Postby Rando » Tue May 23, 2017 1:24 pm

Thanks, BillZ. As you know, most of my work is in aluminum, and because the CNC is in the same area I do a lot of electronics work, minimizing the amount of tiny conductive bits of metal is crucial. It keeps, I'd say, well over 99.9% of the chips inside. When I clean up, there's often 4 Gallons of chips inside the bed, but more like 1/8 cup anywhere on the floor around it, and essentially zero on the desk that's right next to it.

No removal of the bed was needed at all. I used thick vinyl tape like you'd use to mark a safety-zone on a shop floor, to simply adhere the 0.020" thick acrylic to the outside edges of the bed, but run inside the gantry arms. Since it's all tied to the edge of the bed, it doesn't extend "under". I taped it from the inside to the top of the bed for about 2", then from the outside of the acrylic to the bed underside. I then put another covering of wide blue painter's tape as the "disposable" side, since the aluminum chips have a way of getting under even the smallest of puckering of the vinyl tape. I had to cut two holes for the vise adjustment screw-ends, and 3D printed a "funnel" to keep the chips from getting out those holes.

I'll write myself a note to get some pictures of the setup soon....

Note finally read....

20170525_235734.jpg
From the rear of the gantry. This side doesn't need to be very high because there's nothing to see, so I don't view from there. There's a shorter shield that comes down from the back of the gantry plate, and so moves along with the gantry. The vinyl tape sticks great! And, why YES, those are full-width 0.75" thick aluminum bars, 2 pieces 2" wide, and 1 piece 6" wide, tied down to the bed every second t-slot. Sure do make it flatter!


20170525_235809.jpg
My baby, a Kurt D688 machining vise. You can see the "front" guard, much taller than the other one. To keep chips from flying directly at me, I sometimes use that small piece, attached with just magnets. Every little bit helps. You can also see the several inches of aluminum chips that get mostly blown to the side and back corner.


20170525_235840.jpg
This is where I typically view the action, and when cleaned it gives a nice safe view. Well, safe from end-mills flying at me...I still wear the safety glasses for those tiny fluttering chips of aluminum. You can see in this shot how the shield has holes for the vise screws, and the shield goes inside of the gantry arms.


Enjoy :D.

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Re: Steps so Top Adjustments are not Needed

Postby bill z » Tue Jun 06, 2017 8:51 am

This weekend, it occurred to me that adjusting the top with respect to the router should be easier and quicker than moving the router around and measuring. In my case, time is not money because at the moment, no one is paying me for my extra time.

So, I came up with a laser mounted as a router bit. The router turns it and it has a very narrow line that I can walk around my table top as the router turns and make adjustments.

Right now, I really do not care exactly how high the mark is in inches or millimeters, just that they are the same all over my top.

I positioned the router near the middle of the table and turned on the router and found I had just about 3/8 of an inch variance from the front of the top to the back. The sides appear to be OK.

The picture here shows a faint pencil line I drew at the absolute lowest point (the front of the table) just under the laser line and the laser line is at the back of the table.

With my laser, I can make measurements all over the table in a minute. Making the adjustments will take a tad longer.

Of course, it could be that the router is tilted just a bit or both the router and the table have issues.

I have to start somewhere.

I'm making a motor speed control to operate the router even slower than it's slowest setting to make me feel better working around something turning even at that speed.

I was thinking that I might use a 3D scanner to take a 3D image of my table top in real time as I adjust but the scanners I can find do not have the degree of deflection needed. My shark has a 48 by 48 inch cutting top but only a 7 inch Z axis. I would be interested in pursuing the 3D scanner more if I could find something cheap enough with the needed angle.

So, what do you think?
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Re: Steps so Top Adjustments are not Needed

Postby bill z » Mon Jun 19, 2017 9:51 am

This Father's day weekend, I was given some time alone that I could work on what ever I wanted to work on.

I wanted to work on some of the issues with my extruded aluminum Shark top. There was a slight dip (about 2 MM) in the middle that I wanted gone and on occasions, when I was clamping something down, I noticed that one piece of the aluminum was able to raise (flex) when pressure was applied to the adjacent piece of aluminum.

My thought to eliminate this flex was to add a center support across all of the extruded aluminum pieces. I found a piece of C Channel iron at HD that would just fit so the mechanism below the table would just clear. I used the aluminum that came with the Shark that the top mounted to as a pattern to drill holes in to the channel steel piece.

With 9 bolds and lock nuts, I placed all of the extruded aluminum pieces on the channel steel piece where the channel was near the middle. after tightening, I flipped the assembly over and slipped it onto the bolts that came with the shark mounting it into place.

This really tightened up the whole top. The slight sag in to of the extruded aluminum pieces is now gone and none of the pieces flex when clamping.

Total cost was less than $10. and less than an hour from disassembly to reassembly.

I did notice that there were some aluminum burs in the shark angle aluminum that mount the extruded aluminum pieces to the plastic base that caused the extruded aluminum to not be really flat. I used a flat file to remove the burrs.

Moving my router from place to place across the top shows that there is less than a 1/2 millimeter variance across the entire top 24 inches by 24 inches.

I hope this helps or encourages some one else that may have issues with their top.

After all of this I ran my laser again and found the horizontal plastic piece the router clamp bolts to is warped and causes a variance of 3/4 of an inch out some 15 inches. This causes a somewhat rough cut when using an end mill to service a project.

I had to make a 2mm shim to insert between the router clamp and the plastic bottom of the Z Axis compensate as a temporary fix. I'm still considering options to a more permanent fix because the plastic is flexing using this approach.

Suggestions are very welcome.
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Re: Steps so Top Adjustments are not Needed

Postby bill z » Fri Jun 30, 2017 1:17 pm

Can’t seem to find the posting I thought I read some time ago about an all aluminum replacement for the Z mount for the Shark.

I just do not want to shim the router to get it perpendicular with the table top like I had to do.

I’m really sure the X & Y gantry and movements are still good to go because I have less than 1mm of maximum deflection across the 24inch table.

Wasn’t someone making or found an all aluminum Z mount for the shark? Maybe the entire Z movement wasn’t aluminum, but much of the plastic was replaced by aluminum to eliminate flex.

I would be interested, hoping to solve my problem.
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Re: Steps so Top Adjustments are not Needed

Postby Rando » Fri Jun 30, 2017 9:20 pm

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Re: Steps so Top Adjustments are not Needed

Postby bill z » Sun Jul 02, 2017 7:49 am

Tom,

Seems I can not access the web site where you have your pictures to post. I would be interested in seeing them.

No question the products you produce are of high quality. I am frequently amazed at the stuff you come up with. You are truly inspiring.

Best of luck with your move to the south (more south).
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