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DIY

Neo7CNC - Chop Saw Clamp with Valve

DIY Pneumatic Saw Clamp – Neo7CNC

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DIY Pneumatic Saw Clamp

I made one of theses many years ago when I was helping my father with a shop he was building.  We were using very long 2×4’s and this style pneumatic clamp helped hold the extra long boards while we cut them down to a more manageable size.  It can also save a finger or two by keeping your hands aware from the blade in the event that things go sideways 😐

 

What you’ll need:

Your saw or other application may vary, so these parts are just examples based on what I’m showing in the video. The pneumatic components directly below are from AutomationDirect.com 

  1. AVS-53D2-HL 5 port 2 position toggle valve 1/4 NPT (Qty 1)
  2. A17020SN 1 and 1/16 bore 2 inch stroke 1/8 FNPT spring return air cylinder (Qty 1)
  3. SBC-14N Bronze cone silencer 1/4 MNTP (Qty 2)
  4. MS14-14N Male straight 1/4 tub to 1/4 MNPT (Qty 3)
  5. BFRHP-14N recessed hex head plug 1/4 MNPT (Qty 1)
  6. PU14BLK100 Black poly urethane 1/4 OD tubing 100ft (varries)
  7. ME14-18N 1/4 tubing to 1/8 MNPT (Qty 1) OR if you want to control the flow of air into the pneumatic cylinder so it doesn’t move so abruptly then use FVR14-18N flow control valve meter IN for 1/4 tubing to 1/8 MNPT (Qty 1)

Along with the pneumatic items above, you’ll also need:

Some material to mount the pneumatic cylinder.  I used 3/16 (4.76mm) thick x 1.5 inch (38.1mm) wide flat steel bar.  The piece that connected the 5/8 bolt (15.875mm) to the pneumatic cylinder is 6.5 inches (165.1mm) long.  The “spring” top piece is 4 inches (101.6mm) long.  The 5/8 bolt was 10 inches long and it fit the clamp hole on the saw perfectly.  I used 2 5/8 nuts to sandwich the 2 pieces of flat bar.  I didn’t have a large enough drill bit to drill the 5/8 hole and cylinder hole properly. I ended up using an old step drill bit that was large enough to get us there.  It wasn’t pretty, but it got the job done. The last thing you’ll need is something to mount on the end of the pneumatic cylinder so you don’t damage your work piece when you clamp it.  I used a small section of UHMW rod.  You can find small lengths at McMaster-Carr (1 inch (25mm) rod a foot long for @ $3 at the time of this post) or you can use a rubber stopper or wood. You’ll also need to use one of the MS14-14N connectors and either plumb it to your air supply or mate it with a quick air hose disconnect.

X-Carve CNC Machine Inventables

X-Carve DIY CNC Machine from Inventables

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Here’s a recent video series where I talk about the X-Carve CNC machine from Inventables. I also have some pictures of the assembled unit as well as a few shots of their newly released X-Controller.

I think the X-Carve is good for beginners and people looking to make crafts.  With the spindle upgraded to the DeWalt 611 you can cut much faster and use larger bits.  This comes at the price of increased noise from the router.  I’ve seen others build an enclosure to keep the dust and sound at bay.

For the price, it’s a decent introduction to CNC. Especially when considering the larger of the two with around a 40″ x 40″ work envelope.  With the drive mechanisms being belt oriented, be prepared to tighten them occasionally.

I found the control software very easy to use.  Its a very pleasurable experience in fact.  The first job on the Shapeoko 2 (version prior to the X-Carve) used the same Easel software and it was so straightforward that my 9 year old son ran it.

I beta tested the X-Controller and was also very pleased with the ease of setup and use.  As I said in the video, the last thing I want to do after I finish building the X-Carve is building the electronics.  The X-Controller solves that.  It’s very plug and play and well thought out though I’d like to see some dust control and an external e-stop option on it.

Click HERE for the picture gallery.

Neo7CNC DIY Parts Tumbler

DIY Parts Tumbler

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When I was researching how to finish the LoopAliens, I decided to build a tumbler.  It turned out well after I converted it to a larger, more capable motor.  It’s ended up being more of a ball mill than a tumbler, but it did work.  Creating it gave me a good excuse to turn out some really nice parts on the larger CNC machine I built some years ago.  Click HERE to see the CNC machine I used.

After the proof of concept, I ended up buying a very large vibratory tumbler to run production parts with.  It allowed me to finish hundreds of parts at a time rather than 50.  Creating the “ball mill” was a good educational experience.

Here are some decent pictures from the DIY parts tumbler build I did some time ago

View Gallery

Neo7CNC KR33 CNC Version 2 Table

KR33 CNC Machine – 2nd version – Table Progress

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The table has been machined and now I need to tap the 225 holes in it to 1/4 20.  They are blind holes which means they don’t go all the way through the material.  This will make it harder to tap but we’ll get there.  I did get around to counter sinking the holes at least 😐

I’ve tried out a few different taps so far to see what will work best.  The tap with the smaller neck seemed to work the best.  These are bottoming taps so I can get threads in very close to the bottom of the 0.4 inch hole.