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Lead Machine vs Workbee?

Discussion in 'CNC Mills/Routers' started by Batcrave, Nov 21, 2018.

  1. Batcrave

    Batcrave Journeyman
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    I'm in need of a new CNC router (since I'm no longer on speaking terms with my rickety homebrew contraption, and a mill doesn't seem to be in the cards right now) and had pretty much narrowed my choices to either a Sphinx or Workbee 1050... but now, on looking at the newly announced Lead Machine (and, I'll admit, looking at said machine's price), I'm starting to question that decision.

    I'm especially curious to hear from people with more Openbuilds experience than me (psst! that's all of you) about what differences you see between the Lead (or "LEAD CNC", if you're really into capital letters, like the Openbuilds team. Does "LEAD" stand for something, or did "Lead" just feel too small and inadequate next to the big, strong, all-caps "CNC"?) and the similarly sized Workbee 1010.

    They're both direct/screw-driven fixed-table gantry designs of approximately equivalent size, but even at full price the Lead is $200 cheaper, and I'm trying to understand exactly why - and, more importantly, what the implications are. The only two things that jump out at me are the Workbee's higher wheel/bearing count (48 & 96 to the Lead's 28 & 56 - so about $105 in parts) and greater reliance on plates. What impact is that likely to have on the machine's performance and rigidity? And is there anything else I'm overlooking?

    Right now I'm working mostly with hardwood, and I'm looking for a machine that can also handle aluminum and, ideally, brass (mostly small pieces for inlay, in the latter case) - so rigidity is obviously more important to me than speed. X/Y travel isn't a big consideration for me either, as most of my work, whether CNC or otherwise, is on the small side (12"x14" would probably cover my largest projects) - I'd even been leaning towards the smaller 20x40 machines, as the 40x40 footprint will cut into an already narrow walkway (and that's assuming I find somewhere new to put the keyboard & trackball), but that's a problem I can work around (after all, I'm sure it'll be perfectly safe if I just leave them on the bottom of the spoilboard and promise myself I'll never move the spindle there, right? maybe? um... hello? why are you laughing?). What's harder to work around are those design flaws and wiggly bits that you can never see or understand until you've really spent time with a machine, and that, not having played with Openbuilds gear before, is what I'm not sure how to spot.



    As a bit of background on where I'm approaching this from (and which I just noticed is extraordinarily long-winded, and should probably be skipped over by anyone and everyone who isn't desperately and painfully bored. and probably them, too. don't worry, it won't hurt my feelings. much) :

    I've been working (read: fighting) with a homebrew CNC contraption for 3-4 years now, built largely from hardware store components - a black iron pipe frame, threaded rod for leadscrews, patio door wheels running on galvanized round stock & aluminum extrusions, a dremel spindle eventually upgraded to a fancy $20 Harbor Freight trim router... you get the picture. It was based loosely on the 2BEIGH3 instructable (if you want to see the picture), and continually modified from there to put ongoing bandaid fixes on inherent flaws. When I started to build it, my toolbox for working on it contained little more than a cordless drill, some screwdrivers, and a soldering iron. Now that "toolbox" has taken over most of two rooms, and I keep thinking that if I replaced the bed with a hammock, I'd have room for more machine tools. Somewhere in the course of shoving around tool cabinets to clear floorspace for rebuilding a 10" swing metal lathe, it occurred to me that maybe it wasn't entirely accurate to keep saying these were all just "tools to work on The Contraption" - especially as The Contraption became less and less capable when compared to the rest of the gear. Eventually it stopped even being a matter of perspective - The Contraption just plain dun work too good no more, and I find myself spending weeks practicing new techniques with manual tools because it's more predictable, more repeatable, and altogether easier than trying to do it CNC, and that just ain't right.

    What I really want to do is retrofit a mill for CNC... but I can't figure out a practical way to get a Bridgeport home & into the basement in the snow, and locally the smaller mills seem to start at twice the price of the big ones. So I've pretty much resigned myself to just replacing The Contraption with a more capable CNC router, and hoping that the ability to expand into aluminum is enough to keep me entertained until spring, when the world thaws, the bears wake from hibernation, and I can once again dream of steel-hogging iron monstrosities.

    Where I'm at right now, I figure I'm doomed to be disappointed by anything involving less than half a ton of iron, but I'm also at the point where nearly anything that doesn't cause the spoilboard to dip (unpredictably and unevenly, of course) up to 1/4" on plunge cuts is going to be a substantial upgrade... So I'm ready to compromise, and, after all, I've been thinking about Openbuilds since back before this whole project started. Sure, it eventually lost out to the apparently far more appealing "acrylic sheet, plumbing supplies, and duct tape builds"... but that doesn't mean I wasn't thinking about it.


    -Bats

    (Wait... you actually read this far? I'm sorry - you really didn't have to do that, but I'm touched that you care. Or touched in the head - one or the other.)
     
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  2. Rick 2.0

    Rick 2.0 OpenBuilds Team
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    You pretty much answered most of your own questions. The LEAD CNC machine is less expensive due to the fewer wheels and the non-custom plates. As for differences in stiffness, most of the members are the same. The only potential for differences in stiffness is due to replacing the end plates with V-slot and the V-slot will be substantially stiffer than the plates due to its thickness.

    As for the difference in price, at the moment it is actually $250 less than the Workbee 1050 ($380 less than the Workbee 1010) and when you add the xPro controller that currently comes free with it, it's actually $380 (or $510 respectively) less at the moment. If the 40x40 size is a problem the system can easily be cut down to any width you desire. (If you wish to leave the existing parts intact such that you can go back to full size later, the shorter replacement parts needed add up to $50.96.)

    Personally, as someone who spent 20 years as a structural engineer I wouldn't hesitate to take the LEAD system over the Workbee. I like the way it is laid out and how easily it can be tuned to perfection.
     
  3. martin gray

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    can you guy post a link to the machine please i want to take a look :) thanks
     
  4. Siez

    Siez Well-Known
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    OpenBuilds LEAD CNC

    Bought one myself yesterday, well, pre-ordered anyway. :)
    I was ready to pull the trigger on a Workbee when the email came through about the new model, and I went with it instead. This will be my first CNC, so I'm pretty excited.
     
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  5. Batcrave

    Batcrave Journeyman
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    That was pretty much my assumption on the V-slot vs plates, although I wasn't (and I'm still not) clear on whether the difference in the number of wheels was likely to make any difference in linear motion. Still - as I realized shortly after hitting 'send' and heading to bed last night - once I have it together, there's no reason I couldn't cut some plates and stick on more wheels, if it looked like that was going to make a difference. It's that whole nifty "modularity" thing that I have absolutely none of on my current machine.

    And that is exactly why I was sitting up late agonizing over the decision and writing long, rambling, and likely incoherent posts instead of just continuing to shrug and say "well, maybe tomorrow someone will sell me a mill".

    The xPro might end up sitting on the shelf until the next project, though. I still haven't looked at it in enough depth to be sure, but at the moment I'm inclined to just stick with my Gecko G540 (which is probably the only piece of The Contraption that hasn't ever given me headaches)

    But that's.... that's... butchery!

    But that's... that's... actually quite a sensible idea, really. I may try that.

    Thanks, Rick - that's exactly what I needed to hear. Time to start loading up the shopping cart & hope I didn't wait too long.


    -Bats
    (and yet, somehow I'm sure I'm still going to end up kicking myself for not figuring out a way to collect the old 70's punchtape Bridgeport someone was selling for the same price... if only I had higher ceilings. and a flatbed. and an offroad crane)
     
  6. GrayUK

    GrayUK Openbuilds Team Elder
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    Batcrave
    I do like the sense of humour you have in your method of writing. :thumbsup:
    I look forward to more. :)
     
  7. Batcrave

    Batcrave Journeyman
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    Oh, great... Two posts in, and already I've got unrealistic standards I have to live up to.

    *sigh* I suppose if that's the way it's going to be, I better make sure I'm getting my effort's worth. (err... where's the :coweringundertheoppressiveweightofanadoringpublic: smiley?)

    (this was followed by spindle questions, but apparently the forum doesn't share your fondness for my writing style, and thinks it's spam... so maybe I'll try it in another post)

    -Bats
     
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  8. GrayUK

    GrayUK Openbuilds Team Elder
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    I dug this out of Moderation, although I can't really see why it got stuck there. :rolleyes:
    It might be that cowering etc all in one word thing. :D
    If you haven't gone somewhere else, let rip with your Spindle questions.
    Yes, I've always thought we have a poor selection of Mojis
     
  9. Batcrave

    Batcrave Journeyman
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    That half of the post was the part it didn't object to - or at least was willing to let me post. The other half, if you can imagine it, is apparently even worse! :nailbite:

    I keep trying... but it really, really doesn't like them. I thought about breaking it down to one question per post (since at least then it would be clear where the problem is), but I figured the post volume would also trigger the filters.

    I guess I'm going to try again from scratch, and see if maybe this time I'll forget to do whatever it was that got me in trouble last time.

    -Bats
     
  10. GrayUK

    GrayUK Openbuilds Team Elder
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    We do have people who post short stories, so to speak, and they get through okay. :)
    Try to break it down to shorter parts and post.
    (Try not to sound like a Diet or Sex improvement advert.) :ROFL:
    If it lets you post one bit, but not the next, then we can see what it doesn't like.
    Sorry for the hassle :banghead:
     
  11. Batcrave

    Batcrave Journeyman
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    Ok, third (fourth? fifth? sixth?) time's the charm, right? Here we go again... Please don't filter me again, Mr, Ms (or other) Openbuilds.com. I'm really a very nice bat. I swear! Err, I mean, no, no, I don't swear! (or at least not much?)

    Seeing as my current spindle has a runout that could be measured with a yardstick, I'm looking at going with one of the chinese water-cooled + VFD setups (either .8kW or 1.5kW, since the 120V/15A circuit I'm stuck on pretty much rules out anything else, even if the gantry could support the weight).

    [questions to follow]
     
  12. Batcrave

    Batcrave Journeyman
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    So... apparently the problem is in the questions themselves?

    - Is there any reason to go out of my way to get the smaller one? For some reason it looks like I can find 1.5kW packages cheaper than .8kW.

    - Aside from extra junk tossed in like pumps & spindle mounts, is there any reason to pick one package over another, or are they all pretty much the same thing? Do the listed bearings matter, or is that all just marketing hype?

    - This is my first ER11 (or ERanything) collet setup. Can I get away with grabbing a cheap no-brand collet set for day to day use, or is that just begging for runout?

    Or are there good reasons for sticking with a trim router, aside from the obvious advantage that air-cooled spindles are much better at distributing a nice, even coat of sawdust over everything in the room and discouraging unwanted conversation?

    -Bats
     
  13. Batcrave

    Batcrave Journeyman
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    Ok, now I'm just confused. It's fine with everything I posted, just not together in the same post. :banghead:

    But... yeah... I think that was at least most of what I was trying to ask. Probably.

    Thanks for bearing with me, Gray.

    -Bats
     
  14. Batcrave

    Batcrave Journeyman
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    I've been thinking about doing exactly that, and I think I'd initially come up with the same method you're suggesting (two 500mm c-beams to replace the sides, and three 500mm 20x40 v-slots to shorten the frame underneath?), but looking at it again I'm wondering whether it wouldn't make more sense, take less parts, and result in a generally more rigid machine to just replace the gantry c-beam and the front & back 20x40 base rails. Or is there something I'm overlooking?

    I suppose it would mean reaching around the gantry risers for tool changes, which could get old in a hurry... but isn't that the same arrangement as the Workbee 1050?


    -Bats
     
  15. Rick 2.0

    Rick 2.0 OpenBuilds Team
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    Yes, that's the approach I was thinking of. You'll also need to add to those 3 pieces a 500mm section of lead screw.
    Yes. And the short gantry beam of this system makes for a stiffer machine and allows for less deflection of the router tip.
     
  16. Batcrave

    Batcrave Journeyman
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    Oof! I'd completely missed that. No wonder there was that pesky $.01 difference between your total (3 pieces + screw) and mine (5 with a screw loose). Thanks for catching it before I hit "Buy" - that would've hurt to discover once I started putting the pieces together.

    Ok, great - so we're on the same page now... I'm apparently just reading it slower*.

    Now I just need to decide whether to give up working space or walking space, and how long before that tool change reacharound would drive me to rapid the spindle into a cinder block in revenge. Or maybe I just need to order the parts, and make up my mind on the other end. Stop glaring at me, wallet!


    One other question (probably the one really essential bit out of my spindly ramblings, which I completely forgot to ask): How big a spindle is realistic? I noticed the 1.5kW one I was looking at weighs about 5.2kg, which sounds pretty heavy, but I really have no idea what's reasonable on a build like this.


    -Bats
    *I'm not slow! I'm just enjoying the book more!
     
  17. GrayUK

    GrayUK Openbuilds Team Elder
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    I've just got myself a bare-bones 1.5kw Water cooled Spindle with VFD. A well known and good brand.
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07CLSSD2C/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1
    We are lucky that we have 220V on tap in the UK. I chose Water cooled because you can run this at the slowest speed all day and, because it is water cooled, it won't overheat, as opposed to a Fan cooled unit which relies on its fan for cooling. Also, it is sooo quiet without a noisy fan!
    I paid a little more the ER16 size so as to give myself the middle range of collet sizes. You can go down in size, but not up.
    It is heavy and you would need to consider beefing up anything over 500mm X-Axis to stop deflection.
    As for the .8kw, I've not heard any complaints about it. Many, many people are quite happy with it and it meets all their needs.
    Do look out for the 4 Bearing models. There used to be quite a problem with bearings some time ago, but I've not heard of much trouble of late with regard to bearing problems.
     
  18. Michael Pitfield

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    X2 I was looking at the Workbee then after digging a bit deeper I saw this thread and pulled the trigger on the Lead system. First timer CNC router for me as well, although I built a3 axis "robot" for lack of a better term, using the same tech. Biggest difference will be the loads, which brings me to the next thing to research that being how big (weight) of a router will the Lead support.

    I was looking at this one mainly due to the voltage requirements.

    High-Torque Stepper Motor, Stepper Motor, Driver, Stepper Motor kit, DC Servo Motor, DC Servo Motor kit, Stepper Motor Power Supply, CNC Router, Spindle, and other Components. Stepper Motor | Stepper Motor Driver | CNC Router | Laser Machine | 3D Printers For Sale
     
  19. Batcrave

    Batcrave Journeyman
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    Looks like the same Huanyang as all of the ebay listings are selling (or at least claim to be selling, so that's promising... Although I suppose it could always be another case like all the "Miluloyo", "Mitutogo", and "Mitotuyu"-labeled knockoffs being passed off as Mitutoyo indicators.

    Fine, just rub it in! Not like I don't have enough other reasons to be ashamed of this great nation of my birth :cry:

    (did you know that we've even got a measurement system that we named "English" purely out of spite over the fact that you switched to a system that makes sense? at least I think that was where the name came from. I'm pretty sure I read it on the internet)

    I've frequently considered trying to run another 220 line to the shop, but the box doesn't have room for another breaker, and having an additional box installed looked like significantly more of an investment.

    That - combined with the fact that an air-cooled spindle/router cutting MDF rapidly turns the air too thick to see, never mind breathe, through - is exactly why I'd been wanting to upgrade for the past two years. I was just delayed a little by the slow realization that anything much heavier than a trim router would've either pulled apart my Z axis coupling, or folded the entire axis flat into the bed - probably causing accuracy to suffer.

    I was really hoping for an ER20, but so far I haven't been able to find any 110V spindles with more than an ER11 unless I go up to 2.2kW, which would blow the 15A breaker. I do have a 20A outlet on the other side of the shop, but it's currently being hogged by my (supposedly 15A) compressor, that trips anything else I plug it into. Also, a 2.2kW has to weight as much as a small elephant. Or at least an unusually large hedgehog that subsists on nothing but fried food.

    This sounds like yet another argument for building the machine at 1000x500. I guess I'm convinced.

    If I were to eventually go back to 1000x1000, what would I be looking at to beef up the gantry? Double up the X-axis C-beam and then redesign the carriage to sandwich the whole thing?

    Power-wise, I suspect that .8kW would probably be sufficient (although I'm a firm believer in the Church of Overspec) - the main reason I was looking at the 1.5kW is that they seemed to be available for about $60 less than the smaller ones. I still have yet to figure out the reasoning, or what cut corners I'm overlooking.

    Is that "look out for" as in "look for a chance to buy" or "look for a chance to run away from screaming in terror"? I noticed that some (although mostly on the larger/220V models) seemed to give a choice of several different bearing types/sizes, but it wasn't at all clear whether those were being advertised as features of the spindle, or something additional being tossed in ("here! have some bearings with your spindle! the ones we're selling it with will seize in no time, so this way you'll have plenty of replacements! but only if you guess the same size that we used internally. try your luck! step right up, step right up!" :sketchychinesecarnivalbarker:)

    Also, can the bearings on those be readily replaced in case of age/wear/seizure/cheapness, or is that the sort of operation that needs a big hydraulic shop press and/or destroys the spindle's accuracy forevermore?

    -Bats
     
  20. Michael Pitfield

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    Here you go, maybe you can let me know if it is a good system and if the Z axis can handle the load.

    High-Torque Stepper Motor, Stepper Motor, Driver, Stepper Motor kit, DC Servo Motor, DC Servo Motor kit, Stepper Motor Power Supply, CNC Router, Spindle, and other Components. Stepper Motor | Stepper Motor Driver | CNC Router | Laser Machine | 3D Printers For Sale
     
  21. GrayUK

    GrayUK Openbuilds Team Elder
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  22. Michael Pitfield

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  23. PatMcClintic

    PatMcClintic Well-Known
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    Anybody have any thoughts on extending the gantry extrusion (vertical) by 25mm so I can have a double wasteboard on the Lead CNC without losing range?
     
  24. Rick 2.0

    Rick 2.0 OpenBuilds Team
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  25. Michael Pitfield

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    Ah some feedback on the strength. I would like to know specifically what the maximum weight is, which routers beyond the standard trim routers will work on the Lead system.
     
  26. Rick 2.0

    Rick 2.0 OpenBuilds Team
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    It doesn't work that way. There is no specific "maximum" weight, no set line you cannot cross where one side is good and the other bad. It's more of a range that has to be balanced against your acceptable tolerances. No matter what size spindle you hang off the side of a gantry beam there will be torsional rotation leading to a dip at the cutting head. Whether that dip is tolerable is up to you. So far I can't say as anyone on the forum has found the dip from a 2.2kW spindle on a 1000mm beam tolerable. The 1.5kW spindle is a bit of a toss up depending on who you ask.

    If you need a 2.2kW spindle though there are options. One would be extending the side verticals and install a second gantry rail to help counter the torsional rotation. The modular nature of this system makes that a fairly easy modification. Obviously though as this system hasn't even hit the street yet I really can't say what level of success would be. Truly if you need a system that will run a 2.2kW spindle you'd probably be better off dropping $8,000 to $10,000 and getting a proper system from the very beginning.
     
  27. Batcrave

    Batcrave Journeyman
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    I think that's thumbnail version... From what I can make out, it looks like you've got an extremely tall X-axis with three (20x60?) rails on it, but I can't tell what you're doing for a carriage or Z-axis, or what's going on on the table (although I think I see a big ol' pillow block and some square linear rails down there). I'd be really curious to see more detail, if you've got a bigger shot (or have a build thread to point me at).

    With a gantry that tall, I'm also curious whether you run into any trouble or wobble with the wheels and assorted support structure that carries it all on the Y-axis.

    It's more curiosity than anything else, seeing as I have yet to find any spindles in my voltage range that offer choices on bearings... and if you'd even have to research it, I'll take that as an indicator that people aren't regularly getting stuck replacing them.


    -Bats
    (hrm... just spotted some little 600W /110V DC brushed spindles that, surprisingly, have ER16 collets... but even aside from the lower power & being air-cooled, the little PWM power supply/speed control looks a bit rudimentary compared to the configurability of the HY VFDs. I bet it's light and easy on the gantry, though!)
     
  28. Batcrave

    Batcrave Journeyman
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    Pssst! Bridgeport conversion! :thumbsup:


    -Bats
    (um... anyone wanna help me carry a ton of iron down a snowy hill?)
     
  29. Michael Pitfield

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    Hi Rick,

    Thanks for the input. I wasn't specifically looking for a 2.2kW spindle, to be honest I can only guess at this stage as to what my tolerance is and that is likely average, if that says anything. My wish list was to get a spindle that is a step up from the standard consumer trim router, something that preferably will take 110 and be water cooled so I have a reliable option to quietly run at low RPM, assuming I would even have that need. ER16 was my target but if an ER20 was available and happened to be a reasonably good product then I would get it but ER20 is not a must.

    Beyond the above I obviously need to be concreted with how well the rig can handle the spindle, which as you point out is not a simple rule.

    Based on 110, ER16 and water cooled, do you have a decent recommendation that may be a good candidate to work on the new Lead?

    Hi Bat,

    What is a "Bridgeport conversion"? Links and videos are always appreciated.
     
  30. Batcrave

    Batcrave Journeyman
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    This is the same thing I'm still trying to get a feel for. Rick is absolutely right, of course - it's always a spectrum between "this flexes too little for me to measure" and "this flexes too much for me to tolerate" (or "this folded my machine in half, crashed through the floor, and I can't even lift it out of the crater") and where a given machine/spindle combination falls on the spectrum has a lot to do with application & user preferences - but with enough user experience it's usually possible to at least discern a general range of "not completely unacceptable" configurations. We just happen to be in largely unexplored territory here, as there probably aren't more than a couple people inside Openbuilds who have firsthand experience with the new machines, and I suspect even they haven't had a chance to do any extensive testing with unusually large spindles.

    Some points of reference I've found, though:
    • According to Dewalt's numbers, the default Openbuilds spindle - the DWP611 trim router - weights about 4.6lbs/2.08kg (possibly slightly less, as that may include the little fixed base it comes with).
    • The 800W water-cooled spindles (according to this post) weigh about 5.7lbs/2.6kg (presumably before adding water to the picture), which isn't too unreasonable an increase.
    • The 1.5kW spindles weigh either a similar 5.7lbs/2.6kg if you can find it with a 65mm housing (that chart only lists a 220V version) or a rather hefty (or at least big-boned?) 8.8lbs/4kg if you have to go with the 80mm format.
    • The 2.2kW spindles tip the scales at a sumoriffic 10.5lbs/4.8kg (and I saw another source quoting 5.2kg/11.4lbs), which, even dry, is already more than double the weight most of the machines are designed around or most commonly used with.
    What Rick and Gray have said here seems to fit with the vague impression I'd been getting from skimming other older threads, though - that (at least on other similar designs) the 1.5kW spindles can definitely be heavy enough to cause trouble on a long axis without additional support, but can be viable on a shorter or reinforced axis. ("long" and "short" being deliberately vague, obtuse, and generally unhelpful terms left up to a wide variety of interpretations).

    Sounds like you and me are basically in the same boat on this one. I'm inclined towards a 1.5kW, as I was already planning to build my Lead with a half-length X-axis, but I haven't ruled out the .8kW. It's mostly the collets I'm hung up on now, since I'd really like an ER20. It's not that I expect a little 1.5kW spindle to be especially well suited for serious cuts with 1/2" shank tools, but I'd really like to be able to take thin passes with the larger (1.5"+) mortising bits for surfacing wood, seeing as I haven't spotted a lot of small-shank face mills or fly cutters.

    Unfortunately so far, aside from one air-cooled 600W spindle, I haven't been able to find anything running on 110V that's smaller than 2.2kW with a collet larger than ER11. If anyone else spots one - even just an ER16 - I'd love to hear about it.


    Half a joke... but only half.

    "Bridgeport" is the more-or-less genericised term for the style of vertical knee mills popularized by Bridgeport Machines (of, shockingly enough, Bridgeport Connecticut). 2200lbs of cast iron, standing 7-8ft tall, with a 1-4HP motor on top driving the spindle. Pretty much the baseline manual machine you want if you're doing serious milling of steel (pics available on the Bridgeport wikipedia page, or an image search for "bridgeport" and "mill"). Obviously an entirely different class of machine than we're talking about here (if not necessarily in the price range of Rick's $8-10k proposal), thus the "half joking".

    ...but only half. Personally, I was really (really really!) hoping to get one - or even something half the size - and then convert it to CNC. Most recently I was eyeing an early NC (that's CNC's grumpy old punchtape-chewing grandfather) Bridgeport from the 70s, figuring it already had the hard work done for me & I could just wire up the existing motors (and it even came with a genuine punchtape typewriter, with I'm absolutely certain would be incredibly useful for... err... something?).

    Unfortunately I eventually had to cave in to the joint forces of budget, low ceilings, and the logistics of moving a ton or so of iron down a snowy hill into a residential basement, and decided to settle with an Openbuilds machine for the time being. I figure if I can get it rigid enough to handle aluminum and brass, then I can just squint really hard and pretend it's steel. Also, even cutting my machine in half, the Lead Machine has significantly more travel than a Bridgeport (you can get them with several foot X axes, but the Y isn't much more than 12").


    -Bats
     

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