That's it! I have met my goal. I am almost a full 34 days past due but I'm finally there. A lot has gone on in the last two weeks so let me hit the highlights of that real quick.
I got the new hardware in not last Friday but the Friday before. As you can see I took a shot of the new motor vs. the old one. Its almost twice as large. I got all the hardware hooked up and installed the latest version of Linux CNC ( formerly Linux EMC) and did what anyone would do in their right mind. I found some double sided tape and a Sharpie and hit play. It came out twice as large as it should and reversed in the X-axis. Both easy fixes in EMC. I kept the rev per inch on the rod at the default of 20 in order to keep things nice and big since I had a whole poster board to work with
I played with a couple other test files including a couple spiral patterns and a snow flake. It was the greatest feeling on earth to see this thing run.
I spent several hours just going through the software and getting acclimated to the controls and which direction was what on the screen as opposed to on the table. My dad hung the posters from the wall in the garage like I was in kindergarten. It awesome. My parents weren't my parents during that period of my life so its fair game now. That was all the excitement I could handle last weekend.
I spent the entirety of last week thinking about the CNC. It was so bad I had dreams about it. I kept looking at parts from my small engines class and thinking if I could draw them up in AutoCAD. I picked up a copy of MasterCAM and installed it. Sadly there is almost no information on how to use it. There are two or three books on Amazon, a couple online classes you can pay for, and a couple DVDs you can buy but nothing for the person that's not sure what sources of information are really good and which ones are garbage. I finally came across this site;
Those are free PDFs and are extremely well documented. They have window screen shots, button screen shots. Its simple to follow. I cant imagine how long it took to create them but man am I glad that I found them. I ran through a couple of the first CAM guides and waited for the weekend to roll around.
Once it did, we built a mount for a supercharged Dremel looking tool. Its made by Bosch but I didn't thing it was going to handle this job. I was glad to be wrong and another moment even better than what I mentioned came about. I crossed the line that I set for myself shortly after starting this blog. I cut a tangible object. I cut an EMC logo in the double size and then recalibrated to cut a logo in a one-to-one scale. The one-to-one scale is sitting in front of me as I type. I may sleep with it under my pillow. The larger one stayed with my dad and I wouldn't be surprised to find it hanging on a wall somewhere the next time I go over to my parents place.
Where to now that I've met this goal? Well I'm going to take it all apart and sell it for scrap....Nope. Not even funny. Even as I look at the screen I'm not laughing. Well I've got some ideas. I'm thinking about making an enclosure to hold all my air ride equipment and sound equipment for the Blazer. Im also thinking about guitar bodies, and missing dashboard buttons, and signage, and random small engine parts.