Date   
pcb-gcode usage

axtein <a_eckstein@...>
 

Hi all,
Well as there seem to be no messages yet, might as well kick it off.
I have recently downloaded JJs excellent add on and look forward to
using it for a "winter project" that I have.
One crevat that all should be aware of:
READ THE MANUAL
The first few times I attempted run the ulp, I tried to do it from the
menu and of course it didn't work. You have to do as stated and run it
in the command line.

The only other problem I have is with cncsimulator as it doesn't like
the G82 code and will not properly simulate the location of the holes
when I tried to simulate the test board.

Now having said that, I will be using my mill/drill to do the milling
and drilling. I have adapted a 5/8" pencil die grinder to fit in the
R8 spindle and feed it with air through a 1/8" pipe "drawbar". So far,
testing shows it should work just fine (just got the adapter made
today).

My next question concerns holding the PCB stock. What is everyone
using to hold their boards down and properly located???

Later,
Country Bubba

Re: pcb-gcode usage

John Johnson <johnatl@...>
 

On 06-Dec-2005, at 14:58, axtein wrote:

Hi all,
Well as there seem to be no messages yet, might as well kick it off.
Thanks CB!

My next question concerns holding the PCB stock. What is everyone
using to hold their boards down and properly located???
If you look in the group photos, in JJ's Album, you can see what I use. A small board with a pocket milled in it about the thickness of the PCB. Small screws at the corners hold it steady, and I usually use a few squares of fiberglass carpet tape in the middle.

If space and design permits, sometimes I put a small screw towards the center of the board, rather than the tape.

The tape works really well. The screws, if over tightened, can cause slight humps in the board. Since I use a 90 degree cutter, each 0.001" the board goes up means the tracks get 0.002" narrower, so flatness is very important. When using a very small (0.010", 0.015") end mill, height control is just as critical, since 0.005" can be the difference between cutting the board and breaking the end mill. Using 0.020" or larger are more forgiving.

If I ever get my machine back together, I am going to look into some sort of floating cutter setup.
I like the sound of your die grinder setup. Keep us posted.

Regards,
JJ

---
Help everyone. If you can't do that, then at least be nice.

Re: pcb-gcode usage

Art Eckstein <a_eckstein@...>
 

JJ,
Thanks for your info. I had noticed that and am "thinking" (yeh, I know that is strain for the ole boy) of making a vacuum box. Am hoping somebody can jump in here and give some pros/cons or if it is even worthwhile considering. Based on some reading I have done, a shop vac might jut do for the motive power.

By the way, I noticed on one of your sites, a mention of a "fat pad" library and have been hunting for weeks to try and find it to see if I want to incorporate that into my project(s). Sounds like it will be easier on the eyes to try and solder; but can't locate the source. By any chance could you tell me where to find it???

Early tests on the die grinder look promising. Had a meeting this evening so haven't done to much yet other than prove that it will fit and move air through it. Will take a couple of pictures of the finished product and put them up in the files section if interested.

CB

Re: pcb-gcode usage

l0bulls <andy@...>
 

My next question concerns holding the PCB stock. What is everyone
using to hold their boards down and properly located???
If you look in the group photos, in JJ's Album, you can see what I use.
A small board with a pocket milled in it about the thickness of the
PCB. Small screws at the corners hold it steady, and I usually use a
few squares of fiberglass carpet tape in the middle.
Hullo,

A while back I came across this link with some great PCB hold down ideas.

http://www.cag.lcs.mit.edu/~cananian/Projects/FabClass/tools/Modela/

In a dull moment I intend to try these sort of things using old CDs or
maybe 'reject' PCBs...I've got a bit of a collection of those from
good ole etching days.

I used to use carpet tape a lot but it's a bit of a pain. My current
setup uses clamps similar to yours JJ (though not as good).
A vacuum table is on the drawing boards...

Another thought I had was a sort of 'picture frame', that would hold
the board around the 4 edges, but leave the top and bottom faces exposed.
The frame could have registration pins so you do one side, then just
flip the board+clamp over and do side 2.
I'm not sure if the sag in the middle would cause a problem.
...maybe use a foam backed MDF or HDF insert for the bottom side to
help with sag...and for drilling....hmmm....
I think I'm going to need to draw something.

Hey! if the foam insert was quite spongy and the registration pins (or
some other alignment system) prevented lateral movement, this may even
work as a sort of 'floating table' instead of a floating spindle.

Phew....I'd better get another coffee on....

Have fun!

Andy

Re: pcb-gcode usage

John Johnson <johnatl@...>
 

On 06-Dec-2005, at 20:32, John Johnson wrote:
A small board with a pocket milled in it about the thickness of the
PCB. Small screws at the corners hold it steady, and I usually use a
few squares of fiberglass carpet tape in the middle.
I forgot to mention: Since the boards I use are the same size as the pocket, I can mill the top layer, flip the board in the X direction, move my machine to the right side of the pocket (I forget the dimension), zero the axes, and start milling the bottom layer.



If space and design permits, sometimes I put a small screw towards the
center of the board, rather than the tape.

The tape works really well. The screws, if over tightened, can cause
slight humps in the board. Since I use a 90 degree cutter, each 0.001"
the board goes up means the tracks get 0.002" narrower, so flatness is
very important. When using a very small (0.010", 0.015") end mill,
height control is just as critical, since 0.005" can be the difference
between cutting the board and breaking the end mill. Using 0.020" or
larger are more forgiving.

If I ever get my machine back together, I am going to look into some
sort of floating cutter setup.
I like the sound of your die grinder setup. Keep us posted.

Regards,
JJ

---
Help everyone. If you can't do that, then at least be nice.





Yahoo! Groups Links






---
Help everyone. If you can't do that, then at least be nice.

Membership, Posting, etc.

zxcvbnm12330134 <johnatl@...>
 

I will create a form email for this when people join. Since this is
after the fact for all of you good people, here's how I have the group
set up.

Membership
Membership is open to all. I will approve your request to join as soon
as I check my email the next time. This should be less than 12 hours,
except for Holidays and the like.

Moderation
To keep down the number of posts about getting a date and the like,
everyone starts off Moderated. That means I have to check your posts
before they are sent to the list. When I see you aren't a spammer, I
change your status to Unmoderated, and you can post all you want.

Files
When you are approved to post messages, you will be approved to post
files. /Please/, if you post a program (a .exe or .com file for
Windows or DOS) run a virus scanner on the file. This includes .zip
files that have programs in them.

Photos
Photos can be posted when you are approved to post messages as well.
I'm sure everyone knows, but it must be said, that we interested in
machines, PCBs and the like, not "biology".

Links
Same as Photos.

You Can Help
If you have a conflict you can't resolve with another member, please
drop me a line. I am sure we can come to an agreement without a public
battle. If you find off-color Photos, Links or Files, please let me
know as soon as possible.

Most Important
Enjoy yourself!

Regards,
JJ
Moderator, pcb-gcode

Re: pcb-gcode usage

Art Eckstein <a_eckstein@...>
 

That sure give some food for thought. I like the idea of a variable sized work platform. I just may knock something like that up and see how it works.

A while back I came across this link with some great PCB hold down ideas.

http://www.cag.lcs.mit.edu/~cananian/Projects/FabClass/tools/Modela/

In a dull moment I intend to try these sort of things using old CDs or
maybe 'reject' PCBs...I've got a bit of a collection of those from
good ole etching days.

I used to use carpet tape a lot but it's a bit of a pain. My current
setup uses clamps similar to yours JJ (though not as good).
A vacuum table is on the drawing boards...

Another thought I had was a sort of 'picture frame', that would hold
the board around the 4 edges, but leave the top and bottom faces exposed.
The frame could have registration pins so you do one side, then just
flip the board+clamp over and do side 2.
I'm not sure if the sag in the middle would cause a problem.
...maybe use a foam backed MDF or HDF insert for the bottom side to
help with sag...and for drilling....hmmm....
I think I'm going to need to draw something.

Hey! if the foam insert was quite spongy and the registration pins (or
some other alignment system) prevented lateral movement, this may even
work as a sort of 'floating table' instead of a floating spindle.

Phew....I'd better get another coffee on....

Have fun!

Andy

Floating spindle foot

zxcvbnm12330134 <johnatl@...>
 

We just had a member join and provide this link:

http://www.robio.be/cnc

I like the idea of the floating foot. I had always thought about
having the whole Z float, but after looking at Peter's design, I see
that the foot can be just to hold the work down in the area the cutter
is working in. Bravo!

Regards,
JJ

Dremel tools and spindles

zxcvbnm12330134 <johnatl@...>
 

When I first began routing and mechanical etching, I was using a
MotoTool. At some point I became unsatisfied with it, took it apart,
and for some forgotten reason had to hammer on the shaft. I didn't
realize this made the armature move on the shaft. Subsequently, the
Dremel failed.

My next spindle was a larger Dremel, the Dremel Advantage. It is sold
as a "Rotary Saw," and works like a big MotoTool. I became
dissatisfied with the spindle bearings, and proceeded to take it
apart. This time, I did /not/ hammer on the shaft :-)

When I got it apart, I found the bearing on the chuck end of the shaft
was a 6002V. This is a light duty bearing, and the radial play was on
the order of 0.004" (0.1mm). I found a replacement bearing, a 6002
ABEC-1. This is a much better bearing.

Someone on another list said "ABEC-1, that's kind of low." ABEC-1 is
a whole lot better than V. To me, it's great!

After the bearing, I started looking into better ways to mount my
Dremel. After much thought, testing, sawing, etc. I decided, why not
make a new housing? So that is what I've been working on as time
permits. It is nice and square, so it's easy to mount. 0.25" (6mm) AL
for the bottom, 3/16" (uh, 5mm?) for the top, and probably 3/16" for
the sides too. The ends, which hold the bearings, at the moment, are
0.750" (19mm), though this will be changing. The shaft actually
extends 2 - 3" (50 - 75mm) from the bearing. This is hidden by the
plastic of the original housing.

I'll post some pictures soon.

So, I guess the moral of the post is, if you don't like your Dremel's
bearings, change them. If it's to hard to mount, make a new housing.

:-)

Regards,
JJ

Bit Recommendation

Phil Moore <prmoore@...>
 

Any recommendations on cutters for a 1/8" collet? Want to get cutters
for as fine of resolution as reasonably possible. i.e. I want my
router to be the weak link.

Phil

Re: Bit Recommendation

dakb0rr02@...
 

The 0.8mm and 60 degree bits are both 1/8". Turbo shaft they are also
called
(same as pcb drill bits).
The 60degree is very fine. I conservatively say 0.3mm, but you may get
it down to 0.1mm if you get your depth just right.

Andy

-----Original Message-----
From: pcb-gcode@...
[mailto:pcb-gcode@...] On Behalf Of Phil Moore
prmoore-at-aol.com |mirc1|
Sent: 11 December 2005 22:01
To: ...................
Subject: [pcb-gcode] Bit Recommendation

Any recommendations on cutters for a 1/8" collet? Want to
get cutters for as fine of resolution as reasonably possible.
i.e. I want my router to be the weak link.

Phil






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Re: Bit Recommendation

John Johnson <johnatl@...>
 

I've had good results with part number 01787084 from http://www.mscdirect.com .
It's a 60 degree, half round bit. I believe the point radius is 0.005" (0.127 mm).
It's important to keep the PCB as flat as possible.
You can also use various tiny end mills, I have 0.010" (0.254 mm),
0.015" (0.381 mm), 0.020" (0.508 mm), etc. All available from MSC as well. They also have PCB drills, though they don't come with depth rings.
You can have a look at Think & Tinker http://www.thinktink.com .
They have mechanical etching bits, PCB drills, etc.

Both are also listed in the Group's database.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/pcb-gcode/database

Regards,
JJ

On 11-Dec-2005, at 17:01, Phil Moore wrote:

Any recommendations on cutters for a 1/8" collet? Want to get cutters
for as fine of resolution as reasonably possible. i.e. I want my
router to be the weak link.

Phil








Yahoo! Groups Links






---
Help everyone. If you can't do that, then at least be nice.

Re: Bit Recommendation

Phil Moore <prmoore@...>
 

Thanks guys.

Phil


--- In pcb-gcode@..., John Johnson <johnatl@m...> wrote:

I've had good results with part number 01787084 from
http://www.mscdirect.com .
It's a 60 degree, half round bit. I believe the point radius is
0.005"
(0.127 mm).
It's important to keep the PCB as flat as possible.
You can also use various tiny end mills, I have 0.010" (0.254 mm),
0.015" (0.381 mm), 0.020" (0.508 mm), etc. All available from MSC
as
well. They also have PCB drills, though they don't come with depth
rings.
You can have a look at Think & Tinker http://www.thinktink.com .
They have mechanical etching bits, PCB drills, etc.

Both are also listed in the Group's database.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/pcb-gcode/database

Regards,
JJ

On 11-Dec-2005, at 17:01, Phil Moore wrote:

Any recommendations on cutters for a 1/8" collet? Want to get
cutters
for as fine of resolution as reasonably possible. i.e. I want my
router to be the weak link.

Phil








Yahoo! Groups Links






---
Help everyone. If you can't do that, then at least be nice.

Fat Library

John Johnson <johnatl@...>
 

Someone asked about the Fat Library mentioned in the docs, Art, I think?
A while back I found a way to do the same thing much more easily, using the DRC (Design Rules Check).
I'll look up the info this evening and post to the list.

Just didn't want you to think I had forgotten about you :-)

Regards,
JJ

---
Help everyone. If you can't do that, then at least be nice.

Re: Fat Library

Art Eckstein <a_eckstein@...>
 

Thanks JJ, I figured you would when you got a chance!

Hope to see you sometime when you get down here! Give me a call.

Art

At 10:41 AM 12/14/2005, you wrote:
Someone asked about the Fat Library mentioned in the docs, Art, I think?
A while back I found a way to do the same thing much more easily, using
the DRC (Design Rules Check).
I'll look up the info this evening and post to the list.

Just didn't want you to think I had forgotten about you :-)

Regards,
JJ

---
Help everyone. If you can't do that, then at least be nice.

Re: Fat Library

John Johnson <johnatl@...>
 

Art,

I uploaded pcb-gcode.dru into the Files section.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/pcb-gcode/files/
Download and save into your Eagle/dru folder.
From the Board Editor, click the DRC button (In the tool bar on the left, bottom group of buttons.).
Click the Load... button.
Browse for the file pcb-gcode.dru.
Click the Check button.

The following errors and settings are available in DRC (Design Rule Check).

Width of tracks
If the tracks are wide enough in your opinion, in DRC, go to the Sizes tab and change the Minimum Width to something suitable for you.

Clearance
If the clearance between items (tracks, pads, etc.) is enough for your machine, go to DRC. On the Clearance tab, adjust the clearances accordingly.

Dimension
If you get a dimension error (track to close to a dimension line), you can adjust the accepted distance by going to DRC, then the Distance tab.

Pads
The size of the pads is calculated in the Restring tab of the DRC. The width of the pad is based on the diameter of the drill hole in the pad. In pcb-gcode.dru, you'll see the Top pads are set to min: 22 mil, 50%, max: 22 mil. Simply put, you're going to get a 22 mil pad. That is because both the Min and Max is set to 22 mils. If you change the Min to 10 mil (for instance), you will get a 64 mil pad. Here's how: the drill is 32 mil. The percentage for Top and Bottom is set for 50%. 50% of 32 mils is 16 mils. So, you have a 32 mil hole, with 16 mils on each side. 32 + 16 + 16 = 64 mils. (A mil is 0.001").

Pad Shapes
On the Shapes tab, you can control the shapes of the pads. In pcb-gcode.dru, Elongation% is set to 150%, 150%. The first 150% is the length of pads centered around the drill hole. If the pad is 64 mils wide (see above for setting the width), the length of the pad will be: 64 * 1.50 = 96 mils. The second number is for offset pads. The length is calculated the same, but the clearance calculated for one side of the pad (see above) is used on one end. Assuming the same 64 mils width and 32 mils drill, you would have 16 mils on three sides on the drill hole, the longest part of the pad would be 80 mils from the edge of the drill hole, for a total of 96 mils in length.
You can also change the default pad shapes using the Top, Bottom, and First drop down lists.

Supply
If you add a ground or supply plane to your board, the settings on the Supply tab of the DRC control the spacing and shape of the thermals, vias, and annuli. Setting Thermal Isolate higher makes thermals easier to solder, since there is more open space around them. Gap is calculated the same way that Pad size is (see above).

Masks
Sorry, I don't use them. Calculations appear to be the same as Pads (see above).

Misc
Checks for grid, angle, etc.

Regards,
JJ

On 15-Dec-2005, at 07:38, Art Eckstein wrote:

Thanks JJ, I figured you would when you got a chance!

Hope to see you sometime when you get down here! Give me a call.

Art

At 10:41 AM 12/14/2005, you wrote:
Someone asked about the Fat Library mentioned in the docs, Art, I think?
A while back I found a way to do the same thing much more easily, using
the DRC (Design Rules Check).
I'll look up the info this evening and post to the list.

Just didn't want you to think I had forgotten about you :-)

Regards,
JJ

---
Help everyone. If you can't do that, then at least be nice.






Yahoo! Groups Links







---
Help everyone. If you can't do that, then at least be nice.

Re: Fat Library

Art Eckstein <a_eckstein@...>
 

JJ,
Thanks for the upload, I've got it and after I cet some coffee in me,
will give it a try :-D

Hopefully sometime this coming week, will be able to try my first
board. I have my plans all cadded up for making a stage to mount the
blank board. Just need to get into the shop and start fabrication.
But that is going to depend on weather as I have no heat in there and
it is not suited to heating either. Maybe it will warm up enough so I
can get up there today and at least get started.


Later,

Art

At 10:14 PM 12/16/2005, you wrote:
Art,

I uploaded pcb-gcode.dru into the Files section.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/pcb-gcode/files/
Download and save into your Eagle/dru folder.
From the Board Editor, click the DRC button (In the tool bar on the
left, bottom group of buttons.).
Click the Load... button.
Browse for the file pcb-gcode.dru.
Click the Check button.

The following errors and settings are available in DRC (Design Rule
Check).

Width of tracks
If the tracks are wide enough in your opinion, in DRC, go to the Sizes
tab and change the Minimum Width to something suitable for you.

Clearance
If the clearance between items (tracks, pads, etc.) is enough for your
machine, go to DRC. On the Clearance tab, adjust the clearances
accordingly.

Dimension
If you get a dimension error (track to close to a dimension line), you
can adjust the accepted distance by going to DRC, then the Distance
tab.

Pads
The size of the pads is calculated in the Restring tab of the DRC. The
width of the pad is based on the diameter of the drill hole in the pad.
In pcb-gcode.dru, you'll see the Top pads are set to min: 22 mil, 50%,
max: 22 mil. Simply put, you're going to get a 22 mil pad. That is
because both the Min and Max is set to 22 mils. If you change the Min
to 10 mil (for instance), you will get a 64 mil pad. Here's how: the
drill is 32 mil. The percentage for Top and Bottom is set for 50%. 50%
of 32 mils is 16 mils. So, you have a 32 mil hole, with 16 mils on each
side. 32 + 16 + 16 = 64 mils. (A mil is 0.001").

Pad Shapes
On the Shapes tab, you can control the shapes of the pads. In
pcb-gcode.dru, Elongation% is set to 150%, 150%. The first 150% is the
length of pads centered around the drill hole. If the pad is 64 mils
wide (see above for setting the width), the length of the pad will be:
64 * 1.50 = 96 mils. The second number is for offset pads. The length
is calculated the same, but the clearance calculated for one side of
the pad (see above) is used on one end. Assuming the same 64 mils width
and 32 mils drill, you would have 16 mils on three sides on the drill
hole, the longest part of the pad would be 80 mils from the edge of the
drill hole, for a total of 96 mils in length.
You can also change the default pad shapes using the Top, Bottom, and
First drop down lists.

Supply
If you add a ground or supply plane to your board, the settings on the
Supply tab of the DRC control the spacing and shape of the thermals,
vias, and annuli. Setting Thermal Isolate higher makes thermals easier
to solder, since there is more open space around them. Gap is
calculated the same way that Pad size is (see above).

Masks
Sorry, I don't use them. Calculations appear to be the same as Pads
(see above).

Misc
Checks for grid, angle, etc.

Regards,
JJ

On 15-Dec-2005, at 07:38, Art Eckstein wrote:

Thanks JJ, I figured you would when you got a chance!

Hope to see you sometime when you get down here! Give me a call.

Art

At 10:41 AM 12/14/2005, you wrote:
Someone asked about the Fat Library mentioned in the docs, Art, I
think?
A while back I found a way to do the same thing much more easily,
using
the DRC (Design Rules Check).
I'll look up the info this evening and post to the list.

Just didn't want you to think I had forgotten about you :-)

Regards,
JJ

---
Help everyone. If you can't do that, then at least be nice.




Re: Floating spindle foot

cncdudez
 

Thanks for that link JJ

I have been working on a floating head for the last couple of months
and originally went for the whole z-Axis floating, but getting the
springs correct to balance against the weight of the whole spindle was
a pain.
I am now looking at seperate engraving floating head, but these are
darn expensive.

Does anyone have any other links to inventive ways of making a floating
head?

Regards

Sean.


--- In pcb-gcode@..., "zxcvbnm12330134" <johnatl@m...>
wrote:

We just had a member join and provide this link:

http://www.robio.be/cnc

I like the idea of the floating foot. I had always thought about
having the whole Z float, but after looking at Peter's design, I see
that the foot can be just to hold the work down in the area the cutter
is working in. Bravo!

Regards,
JJ

New poll for pcb-gcode

pcb-gcode@...
 

Enter your vote today! A new poll has been created for the
pcb-gcode group:

Would you like to have some sort of indication of what pcb-gcode is doing while it is running?
Here is a screen shot http://tinyurl.com/dv296 of an indicator that opens alongside the Board window.
The item in << >> changes as the files are produced.

o That would be nice
o I don't really need that
o I already use custom menus, would this leave them as they were?


To vote, please visit the following web page:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/pcb-gcode/surveys?id=2086217

Note: Please do not reply to this message. Poll votes are
not collected via email. To vote, you must go to the Yahoo! Groups
web site listed above.

Thanks!

Setup

geraldschwenke <geraldschwenke@...>
 

In the photo section there are screen shots of the setup. I read the
readme and maybe I am missing something but I cant find anything on
getting those screens in eagle. Am I using an old version? Thanks for
your help.