Aug 082013

First stop ‘The Z-axis”…

We bought a Optimum BF20 L as a conventional machine that needs to be converted to CNC.
There are a lot of options of driving the lead screws of all these axis.
Some say ‘Take of the hand-wheels  and place some motors on them” (not our approach).

First we need to disassemble the Z-axis by completely taking the thing apart.
TIP: Making pictures of each step can help you later on.

disassemble_Z (1) disassemble_Z (2) disassemble_Z (3)
disassemble_Z (4) disassemble_Z (5) disassemble_Z (6)

Now its time to start measuring and drawing everything in a CAD program.
Making machines or converting them starts out with drawings..

On the left we see an overview of what the Z-axis will become.
The blue parts in the middle are the parts we have to make for this axis.
All parts that are not blue can be purchased.

CAD_01 CAD_02 CAD_03

Looking at the right picture above I have used:
One Nema 34 4.0Nm Stepper motor: DCNC-IP54-4.0NM
One  Zero Backlash Shaft Coupler DCNC-D32-L32 
Two  Nema 34 Stepper Mounts Nema34Mount
One 3202/5202-2RS 15x35x15.9 (Double row angular contact bearing)
One  Inductive Switch Shielded 12NOC2A-S NPN 
And a hand full of bolts… 😉

So thats the easy part… buying stuff…

The stepper motor drives the leadscrew through the zero backlash coupler.
I have chosen not to use the original one, but a RM2005 (found on Ebay : Linearmotionbearings2008)
This guy (Chai) can also machine the ends for you.

So Order the following :

PDF Drawing : RM2005

Now its time for some actual machining.
Lets call the top part (Isolated in the left bottom image) the Bearinghouse.

CAD_04 Bearinghouse
Drawings :  Z-axis

The linear movement from the ballnut is transferred to the carriage through a bracket.
For now I’ll call this the ballnut bracket and can be found beneath.

 CAD_05 Ballnut Bracket
Drawings : Z-axis2

Milling and powder coating  the parts :

 Assembly of the Optimum BF20L Z-axis :

  40 Responses to “RoboCNC BF20L Z-Axis”

  1. very nice!

  2. Thanks Rod Java !

  3. veramente un bel lavoro, complimenti!!!

  4. Grazie mille Leonardo

  5. Very Nice! What are your feeds and speeds on the aluminum? Also what kind of bit? Thanks!

  6. Thanks noxnflames, My feeds and speeds are not something to write down, as this machine is way from perfect for machining aluminum. But here i have worked with 17krpm, 1000 or 1200mm/min, at 0,5mm depth. Bit is a 30* up-cut carbide 8mm 2 flute if i recall correctly.

  7. what is the part for..?

  8. It will be on top of the Z-axis of the Optimum BF20L. It holds the bearing, and is used to couple the leadscrew with the stepper. This will be shown in one of the next videos..

  9. Great video. The powder coat process was interesting.

  10. Thanks m8 :)…

  11. This is very interresting! and seems to be quite easy for someone like me…! Where did you find the powder? Txs, and good job as usual! 😉

  12. Hi Dex… This is easy indeed, and fast and extremely durable. This power came from powderbuythepound. Thank Dex !

  13. Hey, love your videos! What software are you using to generate the tool paths? I’m having a hard time finding any decent free or inexpensive CAM software. Thanks

  14. Hi Devin, this is one of the first questions that i can not answer im afraid.’ I do not recommend software… and don’t know any free or inexpensive CAM package to check out..

  15. Man that looks real good!! i didnt know u could do this stuff aswell.. awesome! Jacques

  16. Thanks Jacques… Ya we are full of secrets :) Thanks for the nice comment my friend..

  17. Just great vid again. Could you tell me, where to buy this kind of coating gun and powder? Thanks.

  18. Thanks m8… This powercoat system came from ‘coating4all’ (local company.) But Ebay, and ‘powderbuythepound’ would have similar sets i think.

  19. Looks good :)

  20. looking snug! Robo :)

  21. Thanks mate… ! It’s first movement.. (somehow always starting at the Z)

  22. Thanks Jacques… !

  23. ?????!!!

  24. ? ???????.

  25. ???????!

  26. Looking good, do you have a update?

  27. busy busy busy… I have to find some time to post more info and video’s.. But check FaceBook, to see where we are at…. Thanks !

  28. Frist of all….your job is incredible ….congratulations

    Secondly …I really loved your painting

    I am a fan of you….so ….thumbs up for you

    be good


  29. Mooi gedaan en bedankt voor je duidelijke uitleg !

  30. Very nice. Paint came out great.Cheers,Tom

  31. Wat leuk zeg, overigens dat die vonk kwam is vaak een teken van slechte verbinding van het materiaal aan de draad die je er boven hebt hangen even kort gezegd.Heb dit een jaar gedaan in een spuiterij maar er is weinig aan moet ik zeggen toch erg leuk dat je dit thuis doet ;)Alleen hoor je hem niet eerst op te warmen en te spuiten, al kan het wel maar is er meer kans op zakkers/druppels en dikke randen.En geduld heb je inderdaad 😉

  32. hello – if possible receiving Bearinghouse in dxf format – greetings Jack.

  33. Heel netjes gedaan.

  34. hello, good job. but a lot of measures are missing. could you please send me or add DXF files of Z-Axis like others?
    many thank’s, and very good job.


    • Please state which part or file you are referring to.
      In the Z-axis are two rar downloads, did you download these?

      • hi , thank you for your fst reply!
        yes, i download both.
        i mean the aluminium plate of Z axis. for nut house all ok, already done.
        there is missing distance between border of ball bearing and others.
        if you provide a dxf of this plate i can take it myself.


    • Think I found it.. New file is linked to the Z-axis bearing house, including DXF now.

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