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Browsing articles in "Beginner"

Tragic Lathe Accident Kills Yale Student

Apr 14, 2011   //   by   //   Beginner, Blog  //  No Comments

Yale student Michele Dufault died Tuesday night after her hair was pulled into a lathe in the Chemistry department’s machine shop. Apparently she was working on a class project after hours alone in the lab on a project. Students who found her body called for help at 2:26am but it was too late. A spokeswoman…

Making G-Wizard Better for Beginners and Small Machines

Apr 1, 2011   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, Software, Techniques  //  No Comments

Being a beginning machinist with a small machine is a tough job. Your machine is capable of some awesome things, even though it isn’t very large. If you have any doubt, just read through Hoss’s projects on his site Hossmachine where he converts a little Sieg X2 to a machine center complete with flood coolant,…

Carbide vs HSS and Chatter for Small Mills

Mar 18, 2011   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, Techniques  //  No Comments

I came across a great thread this morning on the 1911Forum, a gathering place for Colt 1911 handgun enthusiasts with a good sub-forum on gunsmithing. The question was being asked of whether Carbide or HSS tooling would be better for reducing chatter on small mills. I responded as follows:
Carbide vs HSS for small mills…

Great Video Series from Hoss on Tramming a Small Mill

Mar 4, 2011   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, Techniques  //  3 Comments

Squaring up and tramming their mill is often a puzzle for new home machinists. Hoss makes it look easy in his great video series. Here is the first one:

Hoss Trams a Mill–Pt 1
The other parts are here:
– Part 2
– Part 2B
– Part 3
Those videos are taken from his CNCZone…

MeshCAM: Great Ease of Use in a 3D CAM Package

Mar 1, 2011   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, Software  //  9 Comments

Most machinist I talk to go through the same experience the first time they try CAM–total bewilderment and frustration. Everyone has this idea that you create a 3D solid model, load it into CAM, push a button, and out pops a finished g-code program. If only it were true!
Instead, you generally have to wrestle…

Toolholding in Collets: How to Avoid Tool Pullout

Feb 5, 2011   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, Techniques  //  No Comments

Tormach has published a great report on variables that influence the holding power of R8 collets. You can view the pdf file here.
They basically did a series of tests while changing various things to see how that affected the amount of force needed to pull a tool out of an R8 collet. One of…

Amazing Projects with CamBam

Jan 4, 2011   //   by   //   Beginner, Blog, Cool, Software  //  No Comments

Some of the lower end CAM programs are capable of some amazing work. Here are some samples done with CamBam: A 747 made from aluminum. Very cool 3D work! Watch chassis with “tabs” for fixturing… Watch part… There is the part installed… CamBam scored pretty well on the CAM Survey (below). I’m starting to see…

The Results are in on the CAM Package Survey

Dec 17, 2010   //   by   //   Beginner, Blog, Software  //  15 Comments

Wow! We had a lot of folks participate in the CAM package survey. Thanks very much for your time!
And now it’s time for the results.
We’re dealing with two radically different groups here. It’s not really fair to compare an under $1000 CAM package against a full-featured package costing many thousands of dollars and…

A Quick Course in Feeds and Speeds, Part 2 (Practice)

Sep 24, 2010   //   by   //   Beginner, Blog, Techniques  //  No Comments

Here is Part 2 of the Quick Course in Feeds and Speeds which focuses on how to use the G-Wizard Feeds and Speeds calculator:
The video demonstrates the basics plus in depth walkthroughs of slotting, peripheral, and pocketing feeds and speeds calculations that show how the Cut Optimizer helps you decide on the best depth…

A Quick Course in Feeds and Speeds, Part 1 (Theory)

Sep 24, 2010   //   by   //   Beginner, Blog, Techniques  //  No Comments

I’m putting together a quick video course in feeds and speeds for machinists. Here is the first installment:
Part 1 takes you through some of the theory. It’s a 10 minute video that covers things like chip thinning, relationship of cutter edge radius to chip thickness for best tool life, ballnose cutter compensation, and a…

Deciding on Best Depth and Width of Cut When Milling

Sep 24, 2010   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, Software, Techniques  //  No Comments

I got a note recently from a G-Wizard user who wanted to know how to decide on best depth and width of cut when milling. It’s a great question. Most machinists, I suspect, use rules of thumb and habit more than anything else unless the situation dictates something in particular based on the dimensions of…

Ballnose Surface Finishes

Sep 24, 2010   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, Software, Techniques  //  No Comments

It’s a small world, I guess. No sooner did I get done adding a section to my Turner’s Cube page showcasing Widgitmaster’s lathe-turned versions when I find him asking a question on CNCZone about how to calculate stepover to achieve a desired finish when profiling with a ballnosed cutter. As it happens, this function is…

Interpolating Holes vs Twist Drills

Sep 24, 2010   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog, Software, Techniques  //  3 Comments

They say nothing removes material faster than a twist drill. Just one problem, it only removes a cylinder of it, so it can’t really profile or pocket (the exception being pluge roughing, but I’ll save that for another time). Although, profiles and pockets often begin with the need to get the endmill down to proper…

Is Carbide Always Faster?

May 25, 2010   //   by Bob Warfield   //   Beginner, Blog  //  4 Comments

I have had several people ask why the chiploads for HSS are higher than Carbide all other things being equal in G-Wizard. After all, isn’t Carbide always faster?
Well not always. Carbide is much stiffer than HSS, and this can be helpful to reduce chatter or with longer reaches. This is why we can use…


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