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Bazza Sat 18 January 2014 19:31

Ordering Parts - Sydney Australia
Last year I made a 3D printer (Ord Bot Hadron) to help me make components for my other hobby Aquaponics
Used to be a set builder in film and know the advantages of using precision cut curved builds fresh from the CNC instead of setting them out on the floor....
Never though I could afford one and didn't have the space.
We are moving out of Sydney in April and I want to start buying the materials needed to make an 8' x 4' style CNC router.
I have no idea how much it will cost, but the minister for finance has green lighted the project
Any helpful advice would be gratefully accepted

servant74 Sat 18 January 2014 19:44

builds in the US seem to cost $5 to $8K. Can be more or less depending on 'deals', choices and options, and scrounging abilities.

Bazza Sun 19 January 2014 00:04

Cheers Jack
The more I look through this forum, the more confident I feel about building a MM CNC router that takes a full 1220 x 2440 sheet
Have very little welding experience but keen as to roll up the sleeves and have a go
After looking through some of the builds on this and other forums figure the base will be rack and pinion on the Y axis (haven't seen ball screw lengths above 2000)
From my research, ball screw with linear guides and rails have low backlash properties so looking at using that technology on X and Z axises
I have no idea if this is adaptable to the plans and am open to any suggestions

KenC Sun 19 January 2014 01:05

Here, We advocate rack & pinion with built in backlash compensation. Till now, unless there is a mechanical failure such as loose scrub screw or pinion gear, no one reported any backlash problem with their MM.
Its generally accepted that ballscrews are for short axis & low speed machines... I'm saying this just to save you from making the same mistake others had wasted their money on. Its still your prerogative with your money & time.

racedirector Sun 19 January 2014 01:35


In concert with Ken, I would not advocate changing the configuration on an MM, if you start doing that then an MM is really not for you. The design has been proven over many machines, both machines being used for a hobby and those used in a commercial environment. I have only seen one MM use linear rails and one that used chain drive however evry single other machine I have seen has been R&P. Of course once you have a machine built you can do what you want with it.

My initial suggestion for you would be to grab the plans and see how all the pieces fit together then you will understand what an MM is all about.

My MM is to be my third machine, the first was a self designed MDF creation that never worked, the second was a ali/mdf combo with lead screws that I was never happy with.

In the end it is your decision. Look deeper into the build threads here and may I also suggest you take a look at cnczone for different machines using different technology. After that you can decide which way to go.


Bazza Sun 19 January 2014 02:34

Thanks for the qualified feedback KenC and Racedirector, I haven't seen the plans as such or the matching mechanics, electrics etc so am very open to your advice
Tolerances is always important with any precision equipment so wanting to build a machine with up to date experiences using the latest products available sees me here.

Bazza Mon 20 January 2014 16:41

Just downloaded the 5 PDF files and the excel spreadsheet
Its going to take a while for me to get my head around all the info and options offered so I hope people don't mind if I ask questions

The first cab off the rank is:
I know I want to predominantly cut Marine ply with the usual dimensions of 1220 x 2440 so with regard to the "C" channel length on Y axis I see X+600 (ref# 1010322), this means 3040mm to the long point in my case?
I know its a simple question but if i'm correct, it drops all the dimension side of the drawings into place

racedirector Mon 20 January 2014 17:00

There are some hidden gems in those thar plans too :)

Yup, spot on for a 1220x2440. You have 50mm spare on every side for the cutter to clear your intended workpiece. My X is 3000 but I will still be able cut 2440.


Bazza Mon 20 January 2014 17:45

Hi Bruce

Thanks for that, I know that MDF comes out in 3050 lengths, I'll be working by myself and lifting some 16mm sheets that size has past me by.
I will be studying these plans for a few months before I start my build so hopefully I'll be able to spot the gems
Another thing, When Gerald mentioned that beginner's to welding should be able to make structurally strong welds, I fit comfortably in that place
Do you have any recommendations for a MIG Gas welder suitable for a beginner capable for this particular task?

racedirector Mon 20 January 2014 18:49

Hi Bazza

Don't worry, full sheets of 16/18mm MDF will be a challenge to me too, hopefully the lower height of this machine will help me with that.

Not sure about what welder to buy, I would have liked to buy a Mig for my build but it would be wasted as I have nothing else to weld. I am welding mine with w stick welder and the welds are turning out OK. I hadn't welded (prior to this project) for over 25 years and tackling the stick welder was a challenge. The only thing I can suggest is look on ebay for a Mig or stick machine, Migs are out there for around $299 and up. Once you have a welder, do a bunch of practice on scrap until you get a feel for it. I spent a while on this site: looking at the tutorials and trying out a bunch of things to get my eye in again.

BTW, which part of Sydney do you hail from?

Good luck!


dbinokc Mon 20 January 2014 20:01

A good channel on youtube is weldingtipsandtricks. He covers techniques for stick,mig and tig. I have learned a lot from those videos.

Bazza Mon 20 January 2014 21:40

Hi Bruce & DB
I'll look into the websites mentioned, thanks
Bruce, I live in Carlton 2218 (not Vic), how about you?
I've been checking out your build so far, mate it looks the goods!

Zouave Thu 23 January 2014 06:40

Personally, I'd recommend going with a stick welder. One of the things I've come across is that the MIG welders can make a visually nice weld that has poor penetration and strength. I've yet to see a visually nice weld from a stick welder that wasn't structurally sound. Not to say that it can't happen, but for what you're doing here, a stick welder makes a lot of sense. And you can find them all over the place for good prices.

Andrew_standen Thu 23 January 2014 08:32

Good luck with your build. I had never done any welding before and I borrowed an inverter stick welder to have a go. Did the job with no major problems. The last weld was probably my best. But the rest held good and strong. The machine cuts like a dream and still amazes me. Looking forward to seeing your build.
Regards Andrew

KenC Thu 23 January 2014 09:59

One way around is to make many spot welds & fill the join with a ton of putty. :) Works well for me :D

servant74 Thu 23 January 2014 10:40

I have a friend that has been doing 'off grid welding', using a large truck battery he charges with some solar panels. He just got some sticks and good grippers and large copper wire (along with protective garb). His trick is to just 'spot' weld along each joint, then to back and 'fill' with constant weld.

Not that this is right for everyone (a mig rig with argon is obviously better), but it is 'cheap'. That was his goal.

KenC Thu 23 January 2014 11:16

Jumper cable + Battery + welding rod. That how we repair our vehicle in jungle track.

Bazza Thu 23 January 2014 15:56

Thanks to all those who have responded
A stick welder it is!
I'm looking for a decent second hand one on eBay, any brands recommended or steer away from, or they all pretty much the same?

racedirector Thu 23 January 2014 17:11

Hi Bazza

I have been watching a few from these guys: but there are others around. AGR seem to have a mix of positive and negative feedback but I figured I am not welding in a commercial environment so one of these would be good enough. The inverter welders are the new breed of arc/stick. I didn't end up buying one, a mate had an old stick welder that seems to work fine.

BTW, I am in Sydney's West, Riverstone 2765.


dbinokc Thu 23 January 2014 19:16

I have had a basic AC Lincoln Electric buzz box for many years and it has worked well for me. You can get them as AC only or for a little more with AC/DC capability. I did not use it for this project as I have a little fancier welder, but if I did not have it I would have no reservations about using the buzz box.

Bazza Sat 25 January 2014 23:20

Hey Bruce and DB
We took off for Australia day
Shot up to South west rocks for a bit of camping and fishing
Thanks for the tips DB and thanks Bruce for the eBay leads, much appreciated
I'll check out where Riverstone is and give you a hoy if i'm out that way, I might be able to give you a hand to lift or move some stuff

Bazza Mon 17 February 2014 14:51

Just picked up a Rossi Inverter stick welder (Thanks RD)
I'm trawling through the labyrinth of information available on this site, with pen and pad, at the end of each session I add something to my growing spreadsheet.
The electrics look a bit daunting so I'm thinking I'll need a hand when I get to that.
Spent most of last night going through reduction gear design, wow!
Does anyone sell the grind head plates in Australia?
Probably on the site somewhere but I can't find it

Bazza Mon 17 February 2014 16:05

Actually, think I might have found it in amongst Rick Nixon's laser kit??
Shot an email off

Bazza Tue 18 February 2014 22:16

1 Attachment(s)
Been putting pen to paper (literally) and attached a scan of what I hope will one day materialize into another MM
I really liked the way AuSMaDDog (Tony) approached his build and am going to try and follow his planning methodology (if that's OK Tony).
If I can get half as good a result that Surfcnc, Skippy, and AusMaDDog attained when they had a shot I'll be well Chuffed.
I'm not in a hurry, not the sharpest tool in the shed either but am willing to have a go

So as Tony did

The dimensions of my MM are 3000 x 1640
Should take a standard Ply/MDF sheet with a few extra hundred mills on the x side to spare

My materials list so far for the table is:

75 x 75 x 3mm Box = 4 @ 720mm (legs)
50 x 50 x 3mm Box = 4 @ 1490mm (Y axis top & bottom cross rails)
50 x 50 x 3mm Box = 2 @ 2050mm (X axis bottom side rails)
50 x 50 x 3mm Box = 4 @ 1100mm (X axis diagonal braces?)
50 x 50 x 3mm Box = 4 @ 1100mm (Y axis diagonal braces?)
100 x 50 x 2mm Box = 2 @ 1770mm (Y axis gantry rails plus)
76 x 38 x 6mm PFC = 7 @ 1630mm (Y axis cross supports)
180 x 70 x 11mm PFC = 2 @ 3000mm (X axis main beams)
65 x 50 x 6mm Angle = 2 @ 3340mm (X axis v rails)
65 x 50 x 6mm Angle = 2 @ 2080mm (y axis v rails)
75 x 6mm Flatbar =1 @ 2000 (PFC end caps and leg bases)
20 x 6mm Flatbar = 2 @ 1670 (1020235 bit confused about that one)???
15 x 3mm Flatbar = 1 @ 1000 (Spring anchors???)
50 x 25 x 3mm rectangle = 1 @ 500 (Z Slider brace)
100 x 6mm Flatbar = 1 @ 750 tool steel (Z Slide)
8mm roundbar = 1 @ 2160 (cable shelf rod)

Here's the scans (no CAD etc)
Attachment 14615

Bazza Sat 01 March 2014 21:59

Made a few modifications to table length on X axis to 3050
Put order in for Mechmate kit from Superior Bearing Co
Ordered and received Laser cut kit from Rick (Melbourne) Top bloke
Purchased Stick welder (Cheers RD and co)
Grabbed a Milwaukee Grinder on special (plates marry up very well)

Ordering list:

Hopefully from CNC CUPCAKE
3 x 2m MOD 1.0 Rails
2 x 1m MOD 1.0 Rails
4 x 30T Pinions

Pedestal Drill 3/4HP 16mm Chuck
Cold Cut Saw (Makita or Bosch)???

Looking through other peoples projects, see the 30T pinion can be used as a direct drive cog or be geared down using reduction belts to 4:1 for smoother work

Still trying to find Tool Steel in Sydney and not sure why a google search doesn't get much responses other than "steel tools"?

The stepper Motors will most likely be Nema34's but not sure what Oz yet, or spindle size/length etc
Cheers to Ross (Surfcnc) who has given me a few ideas on motors/electronics, I've got to get my head around his suggestions but that's a little down the track

And finally, the Minister for finance, communications and foreign affairs has taken up a position in Northern NSW, so we decided to buy a place on the coast nearby that will suit both out needs (for her, a lovely new kitchen and, a decent sized block with room to extend garage into big Man shed, with exceptional fishing a few minutes away)
Not sure whether to buy my steelwork here or up in Kempsey, NSW?

Won't start my build until slab is laid and garage extended (I'm a Chippy)
We move in 4 weeks and 2 days but who's counting

racedirector Sun 02 March 2014 02:22

Bazza mate, sounds like you are moving right along in the right direction. Well done my friend.

Your ordering list from Cupcake World is exactly what I bought, way cheaper than any quote I ever received. I am going direct drive initially then making reduction plates once I have the machine running. I may yet get some reduction plates off Rick Nixon, haven't decided yet.

For motors I went with with 640 Oz-in monsters, 3 I bought from a defunct MM build and the last one I got from Here's the link to the motor I got, it matches the other 3 I already had: I will be running my motors on a tad under 50V DC coming from a 300VA 2x 36V AC toroid sourced from RS Components, Sydney - part number was 223-8235.

For controllers I went with Leadshines, was going with DM856's but ended up with AM882's. Bought these from China for USD$350-ish including shipping.

I didn't go with a cold saw but did buy a cut-off saw running 355mm cutting disks. In my case I couldn't see any future use for a product that would cost heaps so went with the cheaper of the two. Worked fine for me.

Yes, a decent drill is a must, Carbatec or Machinery Warehouse in Parramatta have reasonable ones.

Now, steel. I ended up getting my steel from a couple of different places - Buttsworth Industrial in Windsor, KRE Metal & More also in Windsor and another crowd in Minchinbury (my 65x50x6 angle) - I have forgotten their name but will dig it out if need be. For my Z I have gone with cold rolled flat, I got mine 100mm x 6mm x 750mm, from a crowd in Melbourne for under $100 shipped to my door. I'll dig their name out if you are interested.

Well done on the new house, real jealous as we are still renting. Good luck with the move!


chunkychips Sun 02 March 2014 05:02

Hi Bazza,

FYI I called Cupcake CNC a couple of weeks ago re: Module 1 rack and they were all out. Said they were unlikely to get any more in the near future. Shame. They are cheap and local to me. I ended up ordering from TEA Transmissions in QLD. Only cost a little bit more including delivery to Melbourne but they are also doing custom bore, 20 tooth pinions + set screws.

racedirector Sun 02 March 2014 06:31

Well thats a bugger, was going to buy more of them for another CNC machine but will now have to rethink things......

Bazza Mon 03 March 2014 20:14

Chunkychips is right, asked CNC Cupcake if they would restock mod 1.0, Naomi said its indefinitely out of stock
I remember CNC Cupcake's Mod 1 came to about $350 delivered to Sydney. I also asked for a quote on the module 2 (20mm x 20mm) delivered to Sydney and this was around $480
Just got a quote from TEA (Cheers Chunkychips) for their Mod 1, It's is an eye watering $563.92 delivered

Has anyone used Module 2 rack and pinion?
I did look but could not find any info other than 1.0 and 1.5
I might get that tool steel name too RD if you have it handy, and thanks for your help so far, I hope to return the favor
Cheers Bazza

Bazza Mon 03 March 2014 20:49

Rang Back TEA and Sonia knocked a bit off the price and stopped the tears...They arrive on Friday

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