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Voron Cascade CNC


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A voron CNC machine in the making, due for release Nov/Dec 2024. But the price tag is ....... well, you decide US2500-US3000

MGN15 rails, Nema23 motors, 5160 drivers.

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Following the Voron ethos - all parts readily available. Kits - no full kits as I understand but kits containing the aluminium parts.

Here is a video:

 

 

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I indeed saw it the day before. Was thinking about posting it here but didn't.

The only thing that I like about it is, that it is enclosed.

I do not like it because

1- it is very expensive: hobbyist ready made CNC machines much better designed than this you can get for less than half the price.

2- The Milo's toolhead only moves in the Z direction, which makes it very stable. This one moves the toolhead also in the Y direction, making it less sturdy.

Not an expert, but I will wait for it to get to version 6. Or just do Milo as soon as @PFarm shows his first cnc'ed parts.  

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It certainly looks like an interesting addition to the field. It seems to me the cost difference starts with Cascade using ball screws instead of lead screws and having that polycarbonate enclosure as an integral part of the design. It also looks like the machined side plates are massive.

It will be interesting watching the progress on this project this year.

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2 hours ago, Dirk said:

2- The Milo's toolhead only moves in the Z direction, which makes it very stable. This one moves the toolhead also in the Y direction, making it less sturdy.

I think they said in the video this was done because you can do multiple shallow passes with little stress on the toolhead in the same time as one deep pass with significant force. I'm no machinist BTW, just repeating the reason stated in the video. 

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So... Basically... It's a bed slinger. 🤪

All kidding aside, It will be interesting to see how this device evolves. The build streamers will get some mileage from this and pull in the early adopters and we will see. Should be fun.

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If the pricing is roughly accurate, that is a lot of money for a desktop machine.  I wonder how much experience the developers have with machining. 

When I started my hobby machining journey, I bought a used Harbor Freight mini-mill. I quickly realized that it was way too small and had no mass. I sold that and purchased a benchtop mill. I owned that for a few years but wasn't really happy, and I realized/learned that mass is everything when you are talking machining. I then purchased a knee mill. The difference in milling capabilities was significant. 

 

I'm sorry, but I see this Voron "CNC" as nothing more than a toy.

A picture of my current mill...

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I didn't mean to be arrogant by posting a picture of my mill. I firmly believe in mass, but I also understand that many people can't move a 4000lb mill around either.

I was initially surprised at the cost of the Voron Cascade mill (high), but after looking at a few others, it seems they might be in the ballpark.  I like the linear rails and believe that is a good solution for linear travel.  I would consider mist cooling a must, especially at those spindle speeds, requiring an air compressor with some tank volume (20-gallon min). 

One problem with such a small work area is once you figure in fixturing for your parts, you will quickly run out of room.  Overall, it seems very small.

I do feel that the Print CNC and others already have a leg up on the Voron, though. 

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I certainly didn't read it as such. Your comment is exactly correct from what I've learned of CNC mills.

That said, looking in from outside, I see a place for these reprap style DIY mills. They are smaller and less expensive so a lower bar of entry to get started. For projects within their capabilities, they make it accessible. Plus, it scratches the maker itch to be able to build one.

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OK, Time to chime in and get people mad again. 😄

Here's where I see these little "project" CNC mills fitting in. If you want to mill anything from baseball size to larger, then you need a legit mill, the minimum being a knee mill. Same goes for cutting any ferrous metals.

Now... If want to mill small parts from nonferrous metals the size of a baseball or smaller... All of the project CNC mills are more than up to the task. No, you're not going to hog out material with a large depth of cut but you will be able to machine smaller stuff.

Like what? You may ask...

I could see myself cutting custom toolhead components like the one on the VzBoT. It would also work great to cut G10 fiberglass or CF sheet or any sheet stock. In fact... all of the CNC parts I just put on my Voron refurb could be cut on any of the project CNC mills without issue.

So, I see the project CNC mills as a Ford Ranger pickup, the Bridgeport as an F350 and so on up the scale.

And FWIW... there are plenty of small jobs where even at slow feeds and speeds, the little CNC mill will spank the knee mill because you don't have to stand in front of it and turn cranks. And once you want to mill a non-planar surface... the knee mill loses, period but if you want to skim the head of your 4 banger... the knee mill is the winner.

It really comes down to scale IMO.

Different jobs... Different tools.

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On 4/25/2024 at 4:54 PM, MrSprinklz said:

I think they said in the video this was done because you can do multiple shallow passes with little stress on the toolhead in the same time as one deep pass with significant force. I'm no machinist BTW, just repeating the reason stated in the video. 

While doing shallow passes is an option, it is a terrible one as you'll only ever be using the tip of your cutter wearing it out faster while wasting all the cutting potential it has above that area.

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Welcome to the forum!

But what about machining the sides? I am also not a machinist, but it does seem to me the end will wear faster no matter what since that will always be in contact. Also, with these being hobby machines I doubt they will be running 24/7 like a commercial one would be so yeah the tools will wear faster, but I'd think it would still take longer will only intermittent use on small parts.

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11 hours ago, Durahl said:

While doing shallow passes is an option, it is a terrible one as you'll only ever be using the tip of your cutter wearing it out faster while wasting all the cutting potential it has above that area.

You make a valid point, but I would add...

Tool wear is going to vary depending on many factors and while doing shallow passes increases the time the tool is cutting for a given task... things like material hardness, cooling, depth of cut, etc., etc., also play a roll. Now if machining parts from aluminum costs me 2-3 tools per part... I would certainly be concerned but, I don't think that it's so common that it becomes showstopper.

And FWIW... if you're burning thru tools... you probably need to look for a bigger machine. 😀

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On 5/7/2024 at 3:32 PM, claudermilk said:

Welcome to the forum!

But what about machining the sides? I am also not a machinist, but it does seem to me the end will wear faster no matter what since that will always be in contact. Also, with these being hobby machines I doubt they will be running 24/7 like a commercial one would be so yeah the tools will wear faster, but I'd think it would still take longer will only intermittent use on small parts.

You mean the bottom of the Endmill? 🤔 Unless all you do is drilling and boring then you'd hardly ever be using it compared to the sides of the Endmill 🤨

With certain Milling Strategies you could essentially have the Endmill bottom never make notable contact with the material except of say a loose Chip touching it 😁

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Posted (edited)

When I had a Bridgeport I used to use climb milling a fair bit. The bridgeport was a nice hunk of iron and steel, but you knew when you were climb milling that you wish it was twice the hunk of metal. I enjoyed having a hand on each of the wheels and shaping out parts. But I digress...

I expect climb milling on little machines like these would be a non-starter. Ditto using shell mills, fly cutters, issues drilling? A good sized vertical knee mill is a nice drill press...

Someone mentioned milling G10 and CF bearing materials. These are pretty abrasive and can rapidly degrade your machine. On my Bridgeport I had covers that kept junk out of moving parts. These little mills lack that, so I'd think twice about cutting materials that produce abrasive dust.

It's been a while, but at the time I shopped around for about 6 months and picked up a decent old Bridgeport for about 1.5K. You might be able to get a used industrial mill for less than the price of one of these machines. That's if you have the place to put it, and the time to clean it up and bring it back into whatever spec is acceptible to you.

I do think a little machine like this one could potentially excel at production machining of little parts out of materials like brass. So if you have the need for light production runs in that sort of material, then perhaps a machine like this one makes sense. But if I were spending that much money, I'd probably try to get a used Tormach instead. It would be a more capable machine. But again, you'd need the space to plant it. A small desktop mill, manual or CNC, takes less space. Something like a Taig possibly.

The RPM range you can achieve is worth considering. Speeds and feeds...

Gerald

 

PS - Or a Precision Matthews possibly as another option, just to mention another name.

Edited by G_T
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linear rails are nice, but "real" CNC machine use case iron dovetail.   Also I wonder if this machine has a means of pumping coolent on the end mill and recirculating it.  I worry about the motors being placed where flying metal swarf and splashed coolant can get inside of them. 

 

I made a CNC machine mostly of 3D printed parts and one huge not printed part.   The not printed part has this https://www.harborfreight.com/power-tools/drills-drivers/drill-presses/milling-machines/two-speed-variable-bench-mill-drill-machine-44991.html

The plastic parts where for motor mounts and brackets.

 

If I had to do it all over I'd start with this "big part" and still be under the price of the Voron: https://www.harborfreight.com/vertical-milling-machine-40939.html

The neat thing about these "parts" is they come with the lead screws and nuts and the linear bearing and they are made from cast iron, not 2020 extrustions. 

In my case i did not use the stock Z Axis and replaced it with a 122m diameter ball screw driven my a NEMA24 motor of about 4 Nm holding torque.   I plan to replace thos with a larger closed loop motor

 

At first, I figured I would replace the plastic (PLA, because it is very rigid) motor mounts with aluminum but now I realize the mounts only have to handle the reaction torque from the motors, 4 to 6 Nm at most.

I even mostly printed the timing belt pulleys,   I printed tooth-rings and epoxy them to a steel hub.  PLA teeth work well but PLA hubs don't.

BIG QUESTION....  What software are they using?     I'm using Linux CNC.    

 

I don't have photos just a "day one" video of an very early test: 

 

 

As you can see I even 3D printed the timing belt.   This was done as a joke, I wanted to show how badly it fails on YouTube but it worked for HOURS.  THere is another printed belt on the z-axis.   

I think the total cost was about $1,200

I have plans to add a 4th axis, basically a rotary table with a motor on it, yes i can add coolant.  The whole machine sits on a big "cake pan"

 

 

 

 

 

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50 minutes ago, sleepster217 said:

Looks interesting but seems expensive to me but I stand to be corrected 

The big problem with Voron is that they constrain themselves to designs that can be built with hand tools. It is impossible to make precision machined parts with a screwdriver so with Voron you have to BUY the precision parts and assemble them with a screwdriver.     But a Chinese factory starts with junk-iron, melts it and pours it into sand cast molds.   The raw material is literally "cheap as dirt" and they buy it literally by the ton.  And because the factory is making many machines thay can apply automation and greatly reduce the labor cost.  

"screwdriver-only"  is a huge handicap compared to a company that can use CNC'd iron sand castings for parts.

It is cheaper to simply buy a machine and then  stick motors on the handwheels, and then connect a computer to the motors.    The next step in cost and effort is to buy the machine and replace the lead screws with ball screws, then add the motors.    The good part about this, is that you have a manually controlled milling machine available to make the parts for the CNC'd version.

It got to this point with electronics years ago.  Heathkit used to sell kits where you could build your own electronics but at some point the kits had to be priced higher then what you could buy ready-made.   It appears we have crossed that point with 3D printers

So "Why build?"  I'd say because you want something you can't buy.  You are no longer doing it to save money.

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6 hours ago, chrisalbertson said:

 

So "Why build?"  I'd say because you want something you can't buy.  You are no longer doing it to save money.

I agree with what you are saying hey I could have brought a k1max for less money than I have spent on the 2.4 I am building but for me a few factors came into it I am interested in building it as then I know all about it second I can spread the spend over a longer duration with not interest or locked in payments and last I canale this how I want not like some mass produced thing is 

 

But I do bereave the cost of the cnc mill will put a lot of people off I am curious as to how the project goes and if it is a slow build I may build my self onr any way for the reasons above

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