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Finalizing my choices

4175 Views 10 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  honesttjohn
Hi everyone glad to be here so after months of research I decided to get a CNC with a seven watt Jtech laser diode instead of a CO2 laser engraver cutter. now all the companies I picked are good they're all within my price range they're all more or less the size I need but now it's getting difficult to choose between them just like if you're looking at a car you can't really compare a four cylinder to a V8 automatic transmission to manual transmission and two-wheel drive to four-wheel drive but that's what it's coming down to.

the cncs have rack and pinion they have lead screws or ball screws when it comes to electronics I'm not skimping I'm getting a good board and high torque nema 23 motors and at least 24v power. so my choices have come down too Millwright Mega V rack and pinion very sturdy good reputation around to $2,000 price range the other one is the onefinity that's also going to be in the $2,000 price range. they're the newest ones so not much data on them but they're sealed linear bearings with ball screws. that would seem to be the best choice but I'm not sure.

and on the cheapest side there's the longmill that has just a simple V channel and wheels I have seen some nice work done with it but that design looks like the weakest and the most problematic. again just going on opinion don't have any knowledge and then the two kits that I'm trying to decide on.

if I don't get the above three one is the openbuilds lead CNC either directly from openbuilds or from makerbuilds or even the AliExpress China bulkman 3D.

I'm pretty sure all the extrusions are coming from China anyway and with any of those I'm getting the openbuilds electronic package that's going to have the Blackbox motion control. all the wiring and the nema 23 motors so not skipping on the electronics just trying to decide if I go to one of those kits.

who to get it from now another one I'm pretty interested in is the printNC from three designs. it also uses ball screws and seems to be pretty well built but it's just regular aluminum channel that I have to drill and screw together seems like would be not as good a fit as the extruded v slot channels with corner brackets from openbuilds.

so what I'm looking for is a hobby CNC that can become a small business CNC without having to upgrade or change. I want to have the least maintenance possible last the longest time and whatever can go wrong with it that I'm able to just order the part and change it myself because I do plan to relocate to another country. not going to be doing a lot of plastics or aluminum just mostly wood and foam but I do want precision in case I do any inlay work.

so there you have it give me your opinions.

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That's hard to read.
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Welcome to the forum, Joe! Add your first name to your profile to clear the N/a in the side panel and so we'll know what to call you. Add your location to your profile, as well.

Ditto. This needs paragraphs to be readable. If your editing time has passed and you want me to add some carriage returns just let me know.

I will give my opinion, but understand I have not used any of those choices, but is based on thinking that went into me designing and building my own machine.
24V is not sufficient for any Nema23 steppers (Should be 48V or higher), so that eliminates several of those (I.e. Blackfoot controller is 24V). . Millwright attaches 2 steppers to a single driver, that is poor design as well. Stiffness and speed are the primary characteristics I looked for (speed = proper chip loads = cut quality, longer bit life), so none of the machines with 3D printed or plastic structure (longmill, nextwave) made my cut.

The best advice I can give is don’t decide based on how much money you have burning a hole in your pocket, decide based on what you want to be able to do, including size and materials. For me, things like being able to work ends and edges of boards and handling full sheets of ply was important, I’m sure you have developed your own list (if not, you are not ready to buy).
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Yes David you can add paragraphs if you want, I don't see a way to do it, I did it quickly at work using speech to text. Thanks.
Yes David you can add paragraphs if you want, I don't see a way to do it, I did it quickly at work using speech to text. Thanks.
I added some carriage returns to make paragraphs but didn't do anything to capitalization or spelling.

Now that I have read it I can safely say that if you're buying a hobby machine then that's what you're going to get - hobby machine performance. These won't be very rigid or have good accuracy and repeatability. Plus, jobs that some of us would cut in 10 minutes may take these hobby machines an hour or more and if pushed they may chatter or break bits.

Just an FYI, when you're doing speech to text you can say 'period', 'question mark', 'exclamation mark', 'ellipsis', 'comma', etc. and those marks will be added to your text at that point in your dictation.

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Welcome to the forum.
so what I'm looking for is a hobby CNC that can become a small business CNC without having to upgrade or change.
Welcome to the Router Forums Joe.

I don't think you will find any hobby level CNC machine that is in that low priced hobby level that could also be used for a business production CNC without expensive major upgrades and changes.

Looks to me like you need to decide on a low priced entry level hobby and learn the design software and how to run the machine, then when you are ready, buy a better machine if you really want one for busines purposes.

OR if you really want one for business perposes buy a better machine that is tight, fast, and acurite to start with and start producing a few smaller items to sell, while learning the design software and operation of your machine. Start with smaller projects until you are confident in your designs and know how to operate the machine.
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What Mike said.
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