Hello Everyone I am a High School AP Physics Teacher and Robotics Team Head Coach in Dallas, TX. Next year I am offering two classes of a new course "Engineering Design & Problem Solving" offered to juniors and seniors. There will be introductory units on CAD, basic programming (Java, G code, etc), electronics, and feed-back control systems. Our goal is we want our kids both in this class and robotics to learn how to design simple parts in CAD and make them using CNC machines. We have education licenses for AutoDesk and Sketchup. I am hoping to get a grant for a 3D printer (they're all the rage now in education) and I'm planning on buying for myself a Grizzly G0704 and eventually CNC it following Daniel Kemp's (aka Hoss) excellent guidance on g0704.com. My questions to this community... 1. After my students have gone through the introductory units, I want my students to learn something about system integration. To that end, I think the Routy would be a great first project for our classes. This coming year I would have each class build a basic Routy as a class project. Each following year, I would have a class create and build improvements to the prior year's machines. Thoughts? Assuming we go with the Routy... http://www.openbuilds.com/builds/routy-cnc-router-v-slot-belt-pinion.101/ 2. Here in the US, its most convenient for me to get MDF and plastics precut to 24" X 24" (610mm X 620 mm) blanks. It would great if we could expand the Routy's working area to easily clamp parts of that dimension. Would a 700x700 working area be of sufficient size? Sounds like to do that, we may have to stiffen the gantry? With this in mind, would that be a follow-on project or would a different initial OpenBuild project be better? 3 For the mechanical portion + motors (no cutter, tooling, electronics, computer or software) what would be a good "not-to-exceed" budget amount for one Routy? Any economic benefit to purchasing the kit for two at once? 5. What would you recommend as an out-of-the-box cutter? Bear in mind kids (and me! LOL) are using this thing and I'll need something cheap and easily replaceable. It would be great if we could also cut 2 mm aluminum sheet with that tool using conservative feed rates. (I will eventually have the mill/drill to work thicker aluminum plate.) Perhaps the Dewalt DNP611? http://www.amazon.com/DEWALT-DNP611...54LXWKA/ref=cm_sw_em_r_dpcod_VSzFvb0ZD67D9_tt 6. And yes, I see a full-blown OX (perhaps with ballscrews?) in my future! Any thoughts and suggestions would be most appreciated!