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Linear rails vs open v-track wheel

Discussion in 'General Talk' started by jascox2001, Nov 27, 2016.

  1. jascox2001


    Nov 21, 2016
    Likes Received:

    Please excuse what may be a very newbie question. And I apologize if I have butchered the technical names. I am new to Open V- track. And also sorry if these questions are answered in the video (of the Ox). I had to skim it.

    I am early in the planning stages of designing my own CNC router. I intent to use it for hobby style woodworking and maybe some small aluminum parts with a 2ft x3ft working area. I was surprised to see show many designs use open- v-track rubber wheels on this site. I had always assumed that linear rails would outperform the open track approach. But so many of the builds on OpenBuild appear to be awesome quality that likely chose the Open V-track wheels for a reason other that just cost. I had always assumed the following:

    Con's to Open track wheels
    - That an Open V-Track approach would be more prone to issue with cutting debris accumulation than linear rails.

    - That the lateral stability wouldn't be as good with the rubber wheels. Maybe this is just a figment of the way that I picture the assembly operating.

    Pro's to Open track wheels
    - Could probably mount the gantry to a longer y-axis in the future without being constrained by the length of the linear rails. Maybe a more flexible approach down the road?

    Anyways, anybody that might have thoughts on these assumptions, or have anything else to share on why I should go one way or the other, it would appreciated. Marginal increase in cost isn't a huge issue. This will likely be the only CNC machine I ever build. Can't wait.

  2. Rick 2.0

    Rick 2.0 OpenBuilds Team
    Staff Member Moderator Builder Resident Builder

    Dec 20, 2013
    Likes Received:
    The only misconception noted would be with the wheels. They are not rubber but Delrin, also known as pom or acetyl. Wheels are also available In polycarbonate.

    As far as side loading, the issues are not really all that notable. The main issue is just keeping loads and forces within reason which is generally not a problem with the type of machines being built here.

    I would say the main draw here is simply the versatility of the system. You can modify, adjust, improve, or whatever on the spur of the moment without waiting extended periods for custom replacement parts. And anything pulled out can easily go into something else. I keep a small stash of spare parts to do whatever, whenever. Last week it was a back coping jig for crown molding, next week, who knows...
    Mark Carew likes this.

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