I manufacture furniture and I want to buy/build a new CNC machine. I want the machine to accomplish all of the machining operations without tool changes. I can accomplish this either by purchasing a tool such as the Bacci Smart or a Roctech 4 axis or building a machine similar to the one shown in my Youtube video CNC 1.0 4 Axis with Rotating Head.
If I go with the machine shown on the video I can avoid the extra expense of 5 axis software & controllers.
If you have used a Bacci Smart, are you happy with your investment?
That does look pretty interesting. Unfortunately I have no knowledge of the Bacci Smart machine. I do question why do you want to go to CNC with this? That seems like a pretty simple piece to set up and knock out using traditional methods (Jigs, Chop Saw, Routers, etc.). I would consider starting there until the sales justified something more. In the words of Henry Ford, "Nothing happens until you sell something".
If you need some inspiration on what can be done without CNC's, check out woodgears.ca, and his pantorouter setup.
Ps...I am not Anti-CNC. I'm quite fond of all of our CNC equipment at work, and I personally program them. I've just seen too many people get into debt over their heads "hoping" for sales that don't come fast enough.
I do a tremendous amount of work on my CNC's. recently we did some walls ,benches and table tops from pine, there was nothing about that work that required a CNC other than surfacing the tops. the work you are showing would be slowed down using a CNC (IMO)..
I need to go to CNC to speed up the production and reduce the assembly time to get the sales price down. The CNC will also allow my joints to be more accurate than I can accomplish on with traditional methods, including something like the pantorouter.
Remember Henry Ford needed to invest in a factory in order to speed the production of the cars so that he could sell them at price that his factory workers could afford and still make a profit.
My goal is to have a machine that can access up to 4 tools as fast as the four tool heads on a Bacci. Check out their video.
Each piece of wood in my furniture would need 3-4 tool changes using a standard 3 axis machine. If I had to wait for even a quick automatic tool changer, I expect that there would be more machine time spent on tool changes than on actual milling. Thus as you suggest a CNC might be slower than traditional methods.
While my furniture does not need a CNC for the joinery, I believe that the right machine can significantly speed production.
And no James this is not a sales advertisement. If someone made the machine that designed I would buy it.
In reality the only change to a standard 3 axis machine is to have the spindle rotate on a positioning axis. It does not rotate during the milling, just like a C axis rotation on an aggregate head. Thus it does not need to cost big bucks.
I have never seen the pneumatic indexers in action be it wood or metal. Do have a video link that shows how they work?
I have thought about two head spindle but it seems that if I can solve the puzzle with just one spindle it would be better in the long run.
That being said someone else suggested that I look at the spindles that move up and down like the Motor Driven Boring Units from HSD.
If that worked then the second spindle would mill the dados on the top of the board and the attached boring block would drill the pilot holes.
I think it could work and I will check it out. Still the result is MUCH more machine than shown on my video CNC 1.0 and my gut tells me that I would be into it for more money upfront and more long term care.
You never stated your production goals for these units? You're showing a youtube video of a machine that's probably 500k, then a homemade concept. I'm confused.
Looking at the parts on the bed of the concept machine, it seems like you could easily do this with a 3 axis, and a smart table saw jig to clean up the corners.....Or change the design slightly to allow the radiused corners. You could probably set up and make hundreds of these using either method before it would pay to own that bacci smart or in the time you'd be fiddling with your concept machine. Have you priced a spindle that will accept that kind of head yet? Or the head itself?
If you're hell bent on making a machine, CNCRouterparts.com would be a good place to start.
Oh, and about Henry Ford, let's not forget his first two attempts ended in Bankruptcy...I like to think his quote I posted above came after he learned some lessons.
Gary thank you for your continued frank conversation.
It is likely that others are confused as well and for that I apologize. I was hoping that someone had really used the Bacci Smart and could offer some pointers about it's high cost vs. it's potential production capabilities.
The Bacci machines do offer a lesson to me and maybe others about how high speed production is accomplished. For me the lesson is that if the task can be accomplished with no lag time between various functions that production speed will be enhanced. This is especially true in the furniture industry where a small part can require many different milling operations.
Thanks for the suggestion to check out CNCrouterparts.com. I however, am not planning a homemade concept. I want someone else to take the concepts that I show in my video and make me a fast and reliable machine with a small footprint.
Yes, I may be as you say, fiddling with this concept when I am not making furniture with traditional methods. But I happen to believe that for the furniture making industry there is a big gap between the Bacci style machine and a 3 axis machine, both in cost and speed. I am searching for that sweet spot. I do not plan on competing with Baker Furniture and there is a good chance as you suggest that bankruptcy could be around the corner if I spent $500,000 on a Bacci.
I have priced the HSD four headed aggregates ($5,722) and C axis drives ($4,120) but I have not yet found a ready made drive that will allow the spindle to rotate 90 degrees on a positioning axis. If I can find that piece in the puzzle then the combination could be installed on the gantry of a standard (read affordable) 3 axis machine.
I did get a price from Omni for their 4 axis machine (+/- $30,000) but I am reluctant to buy something such as this over the internet without seeing one in action first.
I spent some time yesterday looking into the Camaster product line. I am happy for another lead to a Made in USA tool builder.
Now as to the idea that you show and that Dropout suggested as well. The best I can do is to use two spindles and a drill block.
Spindle # 1 - This one would have the quattro aggregate head, with a C axis drive, so that I could access four tools that could mill and drill on the edges and with a saw blade could cut the boards to width and to length.
Spindle # 2 - This one would have a milling head so that I could mill the dados on the top of the board.
Drill Block - This would likely be on the side of spindle #2 and would have two drills to work on the top of the board.
The components of this design are readily available and could be assembled by many CNC tool builders.
However, my goal is to create a machine with just one spindle. I will continue the search for a component that can rotate the main/only spindle 90 degrees on a positioning axis. A one spindle machine ought to cost less than one with two spindles and a drill block and I expect that it will also be faster!
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