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What would I need to build to cut 5-10mm aluminium shapes

What would I need to build to cut 5-10mm aluminium shapes

Postby muse458 » Fri Oct 28, 2016 1:04 am

HI Everyone,

pretty new to this but learning lots, I have some DXF files with shapes that need to be cut out of 5mm and 10mm Aluminium, I have got a quote from a local place that has a laser and water jet cutter but its in the $1000's for the pieces. I am involved in a hackerspace here in brisbane so I thought I would look at trying to build a CNC machine capable of doing this so myself and others can use it.

I have seen standalone milling units but they don't seem to have the length and width to cut the pieces I want etc. There are home but plasma cutters... all sorts of options and opinions but I thought if I have have to spend $1000's on getting the pieces cut, then maybe spend some money on building a CNC machine instead and just buying the aluminium sheets and away we go.

Any ideas on current builds or existing DIY units to achieve this?

Many thanks
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Re: What would I need to build to cut 5-10mm aluminium shape

Postby Awesomeness » Mon Nov 07, 2016 5:01 am

Milling aluminum can technically be done with these DIY CNC router machines, but realistically it is pushing the boundaries of what is possible. So it's difficult. These machines really just lack the rigidity necessary to do a good job easily.

As you mentioned, you could build a CNC plasma cutter instead. I have one, and it's very useful for that sort of stuff.

Typically when you're getting quotes from machine shops, a big portion of the cost is setup time. So if you want one each, of five different parts, they're going to be expensive because all the setup effort they put in is wasted on the one part. If you make two of the same part, then that setup time gets divided amongst both parts, and so on.
If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?
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