Benchtop CNC Router Mills Metal as Well as Wood
The APSX Spyder CNC milling machine from APSX cuts metals, wood and plastic.
The Spyder CNC milling machine from APSX cuts metal, wood and plastic. The company says it designed the machine to fill what a void in the CNC router market for machines that cut specifically metals, not just wood. The machine features a configured LinuxCNC, an embedded PC, a monitor, a keyboard and a pendant. It uses a wall outlet to power its control box and monitor.
The liquid-chilled spindle operates in speeds ranging from 2,000 to 20,000 rpm and, according to the company, provides high torque at low speeds. A water-air mixing system facilitates cooling of the workpiece and the cutting tool. Steel shafts, hard anodized aluminum blocks, lead screws and strong stepper motors are said to contribute to the machine’s rigidity. A solid concrete base is available as an option.
The machine saves the X, Y and Z coordinates, enabling users to machine without homing the spindle. The system monitors spindle stress and can stop motion before too much workpiece or cutting tool damage occurs.
The recipe for best results is simple: Start with a rigid machine, add a high pressure through-the-spindle coolant system, then combine these with the right drill geometry plus the right speeds and feeds.
Hand-scraping the mating surfaces of a CNC machine tool’s motion system offers myriad advantages.
Though it won’t replace high speed machining, Boeing sees “low speed machining” as a viable supplement to higher-rpm machines. Using new tools and techniques, a shop’s lower-rpm machining centers can realize much more of their potential productivity in milling aluminum aircraft parts.