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rung fu clone RF-45 ZX45 cnc conversion

7HC

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yesterday the total was about $4200.00 today it is $4550 with the 4th axis
the wiring isnt really that bad it is for the most part there are four circuits one for each axis in this one 3 are exactly alike
steve
I think it would be fair to round it up to a ballpark $5K to include various nuts and bolts, wiring, and probably the sheet metal for the enclosure, which would be an absolutely fantastic price for a 4 axis CNC RF45!


M
 

jumps4

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I had already rounded up to include those materials sheet metal is only $35 a 4x8
and i included the new usb controller for $110.00
steve
 

jumps4

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the parts for the fourth axis came today so i have my hands full with projects.
this table is a 90 to 1 ratio and as smooth as silk with no backlash so all i'll have to build is a motor mount and coupling. ( great buy for $299.00 )
the 90 to 1 ratio mean really hi accuracy.
at 2000 steps per revolution from the motor and a ratio of 90 to 1 that translates to 180000 steps per revolution at the index or .002 of a degree for each step.
thats accurate if i can keep it all a really close fit.
steve

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jumps4

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what a unexspected surprise i just got
because the table was setup and came with index plates the mounting for the stepper motor is going to be really simple
three mounting holes are already drilled into the face for the index plates to mount to, i just make a mount to fit the holes and out to the motor add a coupling and i'm done. and the height of the base will let the motor clear the table so no riser is needed. this isnt going to be a long thread
steve

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jumps4

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I made the second part for the 4th axis and for fun i timed the entire process on this one
I made the drawing converted to g-code and made the part including tapping the holes by hand in 58 minutes
i have to get a faster spindle for small cutters in aluminum to get any more speed but i'm sure i could have doubled the depth. i'm running coolant because of the slow speeds
i cut this at 1970 rpm(too slow) 3/16 endmill 10ipm at a depth of .050 per pass ramped.
the only thing left for the 4th axis is the spacer tube, 4 long bolts to assemble and bore the coupling to size to fit. put a cable on the motor and it's ready to use after calibration.
steve
[video=youtube;DcsYpc4I7mY]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DcsYpc4I7mY[/video]

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jumps4

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today i made the center spacer and bored out the coupling to fit the shafts. everything fit perfect so i am down to attaching a cord and plug and running it to calibrate. calibration will be simple since i know it is a 90 to 1 ratio and how many steps per revolution i have the controller set at.
I didnt have to modify anything on the rotary table to add the motor and it can still be used manual.

steve

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jumps4

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mgp
going from the sherline to this has been amazing there is no work to making anything i want now
steve
 

jumps4

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I finished wiring the 4th axis and calibrating it. I made a short video of it simulating cutting a 10 tooth gear with the axis facing you to see it better this is a demo vid and would not do anything but break a cutter lol
well: my mill is done and i guess this thread is done
the only other thing i may do is mount the head on an 10" rotary table for easy angle settings and tramming but that will probably stay manual...
you never know
to everyone who was interested
thank you
steve

[video=youtube;vAadS2KV_u8]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vAadS2KV_u8[/video]
 

7HC

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I finished wiring the 4th axis and calibrating it. I made a short video of it simulating cutting a 10 tooth gear with the axis facing you to see it better this is a demo vid and would not do anything but break a cutter lol
well: my mill is done and i guess this thread is done
the only other thing i may do is mount the head on an 10" rotary table for easy angle settings and tramming but that will probably stay manual...
you never know
to everyone who was interested
thank you
steve
Looks like that imaginary gear had big teeth, maybe a rear axle ring gear?

Seriously though, I think you've been living the dream of some of those who have been following this thread.

At some time in the future I hope to do the same with a larger mill, but for the moment I'm slowly CNCing my little Sieg X1.


M
 

hq308

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Great thread Steve but I don't think you're quite ready to close it yet.
Personally I'd like to see some of the real projects you make with it and perhaps some video of it while it's doing it. :thumbzup:
 

jumps4

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ok here are 3 videos of it making the z axis parts for my 9x20 lathe cnc conversion
i will be able to move a lot faster when i get my high speed spindle set up.
steve

[video=youtube;gPAmatPMHno]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPAmatPMHno[/video]

[video=youtube;5Ui4_Ia7nzY]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Ui4_Ia7nzY[/video]

[video=youtube;T_za3fXQ6uI]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_za3fXQ6uI[/video]
 

DMS

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How are you going to do the high speed spindle? Speeder? Additional bolt-on spindle?

A faster spindle is something that I would love on my machine, so I am curious.
 

jumps4

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I have not decided yet really, i'm thinking about 3 different types
a water cooled 1.5 kw 3 phase with vfd for $245 er16
a side mount driven off my original spindle er20
a center mount driven off my original spindle er20
I have put it on the back burner for now until i get the lathe done
but i'd like to get to at least 8000 rpm
steve
 

Old Iron

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Great job Steve this has been a good threat, Even through I don't want to CNC anything I enjoyed watching your progress and movies.

Paul
 

Analias

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Steve, I'm curious how hard you would rate this conversion?

I just completed building a CRP-4848 CNC router table. I have no prior experience with machining, in fact the only tools I had to start with were hand tools and a drill press. I have electronics and computer experience being an amateur radio operator and a systems admin/software developer for 25 years. I went on to buy the basic tools I thought I needed - radial saw, grinder, calibration tools, etc. I found the CRP-4848 pretty easy to build. I spec'd out the PMDX boards, the ESS controller, and all the electrical for the shop and the 220V spindle/VFD myself. It was challenging because I hadn't done it before, but it worked pretty much the first time I powered it up.

How would that compare to converting the ZX45 to CNC?

The biggest challenge I see is that most folks tackling conversions already have at least a manual mill or lathe. They can cut the parts they need for a conversion like this. The best I can do is cut aluminum, not steel. Once I had a mill, then I would expect I could pretty much tackle any project. I guess a lathe would be next :) I see myself being very cash poor for the next few years.

-Freeman (Analias)
 

jumps4

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Steve,

What size rotary table is that? And the stepper ... what is the torque?

Thanks,
Arvid
the table is a 6" from wholesale tools it came with the plates and a tail stock for $299
it is really well built and completely adjustable for backlash and be disengaged to free wheel
the stepper motor is a 880 oz/in nema34
there was nothing to adapting this table it was really easy.
and i did not have to modify the table so i can convert it back to manual
steve
 

jumps4

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Steve, I'm curious how hard you would rate this conversion?


How would that compare to converting the ZX45 to CNC?

The biggest challenge I see is that most folks tackling conversions already have at least a manual mill or lathe. They can cut the parts they need for a conversion like this. The best I can do is cut aluminum, not steel. Once I had a mill, then I would expect I could pretty much tackle any project. I guess a lathe would be next :) I see myself being very cash poor for the next few years.

-Freeman (Analias)
this version of the zx45 was really a lot easier than i expected but there are a lot of different versions of this mill all different. I'm sure that is why kits are available by brand only and may not always fix even though you bought that brand. wholesale tools told me they had no idea what was in my crate but it will meet the min requirements. my mill was a lot nicer than the add and was 2hp not the adds 1.5hp.
not one conversion i had read about was much help because my mill was different than theirs and easier to do.
there is no steel in the conversion except the ballscrews i had to cut and grind to fit a end bearing on the x axis. and you can order them to the length and specs you need if you dont mind the wait.
steve
 

Analias

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So far my searches have shown that WT has the cheapest prices on RF-45 style mills. Everyone else is very proud of their products and charges anywhere from $3500 to $6600 for something matching the ZX45.

If you don't mind me asking, what did you pay in shipping? I know it will vary for location, but I'm looking for a ball park figure.
 

jumps4

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they are 35 miles from my house i picked it up. if you call the 1-800 number you can talk to them. you might even ask if they have any lease returns. when i was at the local warehouse they had 2 big lathes i believe were lease returns but i didnt ask because i know me i would have brought one home.
steve
 

jumps4

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You have to make a video of the mill using all four axis on a real part before you call it quits Steve.

Seriously, this will be a vital thread for others wanting to so the same. Thanks for posting such an awesome machine, yet still within reach of most guys on here.
i am planning on making some involute gear cutters on the 9x20 cnc lathe when finished and milling the teeth into them and making a set of gears as a thread when i get all this done but it is going to be a while. i have to also learn how to edit the videos to post them or they will be boring to watch full length.
steve
 

jumps4

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Steave

Take a look at this program. It lets you make gears using end mills and your rotary table. Can also make helic gears.

Dave

http://gearotic.com/ I have no connection to this program.
thanks i have looked at that before and if i had a use it would be an option i might concider, but i do enjoy making the tools as much as the gears so until i need anything but spur gears it's on the back burner for now.
steve
 

cjsamples

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New project for you?

Steve,
Great work on this mill. This thread tells me to get off my butt and just do it. I think I found a project you might love. This 4th axis is one of the things that really gets your mind going with ideas.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HvjnDQoh-7I&feature=plcp

and this video shows just how far you can go with it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y3PIdnNwsAg&feature=channel&list=UL

Maybe this will give you a few ideas for your trunnion table.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=itJqDwl7X2o&feature=channel&list=UL

Chris
 

jumps4

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those were pretty interesting i liked the endmill one the best
that is how i grind my involute cutters i make but this mill probably does not have the rpms required
steve
 

arvidj

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the table is a 6" from wholesale tools it came with the plates and a tail stock for $299
it is really well built and completely adjustable for backlash and be disengaged to free wheel
the stepper motor is a 880 oz/in nema34
there was nothing to adapting this table it was really easy.
and i did not have to modify the table so i can convert it back to manual
steve
Thanks for the details. I have an 8 inch that I want to CNC and was looking for some experienced installations before committing to the components.