My idea for a switch machine. I want to be able to manually throw the switch or have the servo (computer) take over and set it. One wheel is bound to the servo, the other moves freely. Two magnets provide the ‘clutch’ effect. You can move the lever by hand to throw the switch or rotate the servo to ‘catch’ the magnet on the free servo wheel.

Super PID speed controller online and tested. Works GREAT! I built a custom enclosure out of styrene and did some surgery on the router to get the sensor positioned and the innards rewired. Way worth the effort.

I am almost ready to do some cutting, just need to get the vacuum system online and finalize my tool paths. Awesome.

Installing the Super PID into my router. Once I have this hooked up and running, I’ll be able to dial in any cutting speed within a couple of rpm. Sweet. That, coupled with the right bit should let me cut, carve and engrave wood, plastic and acrylic materials. Quite a learning curve here but it’s way fun.

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I think I have too many irons in the fire sometimes but here is the latest shipment from Shapeways. On the left is a 1:20 scale print of my trusty foreman model, in the middle is the secretary/waitress in 1:24 and to the right is the conductor in 1:29. I’m very happy with the quality of the foreman fellow in the larger size, the details are quite good. The waitress was a real pain to get printable but she came out pretty good too. The Conductor in 1:29 had to be printed in the ‘detail’ plastic but it was worth it I think.

I have a store front on Shapeways now – Blueridge Engineering

Everything is now together, refurbished LinuxCNC PC, all the motors hooked up and working. Now I’m figuring out all the settings and things like accelerations and feed rates and all that. I can now see the benefits of limit switches, particularly as new as I am at this whole thing. But it’s coming together nicely, I’m quite pleased with it. It will be a while before I can actually try to cut something out but so far so good.

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I wish I had a ‘before’ picture of this, you would not believe the disaster that was my shed!

Tons and tons of junk piled all over the place. Nasty. Nevertheless, after much physical activity and throwing away of ancient artifacts, here is my new floor and nice solid bench work. Talk about a strenuous weekend, I strained muscles I didn’t know I had. Ouch.

But it was worth it. I finally got started assembling my Probotix X90 3D Router.

Along the way I also lucked into a bunch of surplus windows boxes and flat screens so I promptly wiped em and installed Ubuntu. Sweet. They all have printer ports on them too, perfect for the X90 control box and Linux CNC. You can see one in the corner there.

I still have a ways to go, I’ve ordered a Super PID so I can dial in a router speed and cut plastic, in particular, styrene sheets.

A 3D printer at some point would also be nice but one thing at a time, eh? ha.

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So here is the collection. This is all of the resin casts I’ve done that have turned out ok. I have another, smaller pile of rejects but that’s part of learning how to do this. I think I’ve come to the limit of this particular process and tool chain. I need to step up to a more detailed 3D print and a vacuum system for the molds and resin casts.