the life of one robot

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Edge finder

I did a little research and found this little puppy (below).  Paired w/ the mach3 2010 screenset probing features, I've possible solved a simple work-zeroing concern when milling wood.

Edge finder helper -

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Pendant - miser style

After researching the options for pendants, I quickly found myself shying away from all the configuration complexity and expense of joysticks and 3rd party pendants.

I settled on buying this beauty along with a 32ft usb extension cord.  This set me back 30 dollars including shipping.  If figure I can remap a few keys in mach3 and maybe even make a few stickers.


Friday, January 6, 2012

Making the switch

After sometime of test cuts, configuration changes, reading, researching, etc; I’ve decided to switch to mach3.  

The short of it

  • there’s a greater amount of people using and therefore extending mach3 with the routines I seek (auto-zero Z, homing, 
  • the standard scripting language is like second nature to me (not sure if I like confessing a strong knowledge of vbscript but... there ya have it.)

Originally I stayed away from mach3 given the dizzying UI and overwhelming options only to find myself knee deep in emc2 config, however yesterday’s design session brought me to the realization I really don’t need to focus on all the new stuff of emc2 2.5 (gladevcp) as I’d prefer to spend my time making sawdust.

Ger21 from made a beautiful screen layout which which greatly reduces your sense vertigo when looking at mach3.  It includes a few strategies for tool changes and probing.  You can find it here: for a mere 20 dollars.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Test cuts!

Here's a test cut of domo carving his name.  Funny how thrilling this simple cut is!

I used a font from here and cambam to generate the tool path.  I kinda like it!

More proof of his vanity.

and some video too!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Domo meets the world

Over the last year I've been designing and building Domo, my cnc milling machine.  He's currently on rev 4 and I'm finally satisfied with the design (my inner ocd disagrees but whatever). 

I determined the following constraints given my lack of metal working skills
  • Leverage existing components (8020 aluminum, pre-made linear rails, etc) 
  • Minimal manual milling (only 3 parts require high precision)
  • Easy to adjust and align
Below is the latest.  Perhaps I'll post some of his previous forms in the future.

A few features

  • Workspace: 55" x 29" cutting surface with 6" travel on the z axis
  • 381oz-in motors and Gecko g540
  • Bosch 1617 Router
  • Z axis

And a test run...