Author Topic: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion  (Read 37327 times)

Offline raynerd

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4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« on: November 19, 2009, 06:44:24 PM »
I purchased a Vertex Rotary table (rotab/RT) a few months ago and it has seen some good use but I will hopefully use it even more for dividing in cutting my clock wheels. I have purchased the dividing set as an add-on to the rotary table which comes with three plates for easy dividing. I have studied how to use the dividing plates and after a trial with them, there is no way I can keep concentration for long enough to use them on a 60 - 120 tooth wheel and then there are counts which can`t be done with the plates.

I know, I know .... I should be able to use them and people have used them for years and years in the past but I fancy dabbling again in CNC. When I say again, I mean after my horrific failure at converting my X3 mill to a CNC X axis! A failure maybe, but at least I know now the basics of CNC, the software and the basic setup. So here goes....

I`m aiming for something with functions like the divisionmaster-

http://www.jeffree.co.uk/divisionmaster/divisionmaster.jpg

these are £380 for the CNC kit only (i.e not including the table), I`m hoping to build similar with some help on the electronics but more on that in later. For now, I just need to remove the handle and make a bracket to fit the motor spindle to the rotab spindle.

Here goes:

Vertex 4" Rotab with handle removed:



I`m going to need to couple the shafts together and for that I`m buying a 12mm (shaft axis diamter of rotab) to a 1/4" (shaft dia of motor) oldham coupling. This will also compensate small amounts of miss alignment. So basically we just need to bridge the gap and make a support for the motor. I`m using a tube of ally that was in the scrap bin:
<img style="WIDTH: 400px; HEIGHT: 300px" src="http://www.raynerd.co.uk/images/rotarycnc1a.JPG[/img]

It was bored out to leave a little lip on the inside of the bottom end:


A disk was cut and bored with three holes drilled matching the rotary table threaded holes:


The disk drops down the tube and against the lip, when bolted against the rotab is locks the tube onto the table:


When mounted:


Now the motor needs to be mounted on its 4 holes in the position below but I`ll have to space it out another 25mm to fit the oldham couplings that will be inside.



So that is the idea but I need another spacer (ideally a longer tube would have done!) but I also need more width for the motor mounting points. I`m going to use this and once bored out it should work a treat!




I drilled and tapped the larger circular motor bracket disk to accept the M5 bolts that would ultimately hold on the motor. I then bored a hole in the centre:




The Oldham couplings are 12mm one side to lock onto the Rotab shaft and 1/4" on the other side for the motor shaft. Then the spacer/link in the centre.



All the parts ready to fit together:





And then the motor mount complete:



I have hooked it up to Mach3 after I had done this and and it is working.

I finally picked up the electronics tonight and will post more details about the source shortly. The electronics to make the indexing divice came to short of £30. I already had a Nema23 stepper motor and Routout Driver 2.5A which were also used. The Driver is shown below:


This is the indexer:


Apparently the electronics is quite straight forward since the "brains" in programmed in the chip. If I`m being honest, it means nothing to me and looks hugely complicated...





However, its functionallity does mean a lot to me and it is TRUELY EXCELLENT!!
These are the functions:



I will discuss the rest in time as and when I have played with it more and taken pictures but basically you can step by 0.01 of a degree, 0.1, 1.0 and 10 deg with quick single button steps. You can jog in any steps. You can divide 360 in to 0-999 divisions. Continually rotate the table in either direction and even programme in command steps! It is brilliant! Backlash compensation is also included!

To divide which I need for my clock building, you select it from  the start menu and enter the number of divisions:


You then press the direction button to move directly to the next division!! No fuss, just a button!!



I just need to encase the hole lot and make some labels for the buttons (which I now know off by heart after using it for the past couple of hours without any markings)!



Hope you enjoyed. I`m going to post a picture of this when I get the housing but it could be a couple of days before it arrives. I was going to make my own housing but for the sake of £8 it is worth buying a premade one that fits the display and keypad nicely.

Chris
« Last Edit: November 19, 2009, 06:50:19 PM by craynerd »
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Offline CrewCab

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2009, 06:51:16 PM »
Blimey Chris .........   :smart:  ............. you've been busy  :thumbup:

Top class feller, and keep posting, looking forward to the finished project ............. and seeing it used in anger  :dremel:

CC

Offline raynerd

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2009, 06:54:45 PM »
Cheers CC - yep, I started this Monday and it is actually a collection of posts over the last few days I made over on my htpp://clockbuilding.blogspot.com and got it up and running tonight. To be honest, it is finished it just needs enclosing in a case. A butty box would do but I think I`ll wait for the real thing to arrive!

Chris
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Offline Darren

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2009, 07:10:21 PM »
 :clap: :clap: :clap:

That sure is looking good ....  :med:
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Offline tinkerer

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2009, 07:55:05 PM »
Wow! That is way cool. You can go into parts production with that. :bow:
Tink

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Offline sbwhart

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #5 on: November 20, 2009, 01:05:48 AM »
Great work Chris  :thumbup:

That is a tidy bit of kit  :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

Can't wait to see it in action.

Have fun

Stew

PS I bet you could profile cams with that no problem at all

 :proj:
A little bit of clearance never got in the road
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Offline spuddevans

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #6 on: November 20, 2009, 04:16:09 AM »
Well that is just great  :clap: :clap: :clap: Well done that man  :thumbup: :thumbup:


I'm glad to see the details on the stepper motor mounting, I plan on doing a cnc conversion on on my mill and also on my RT next year, so thanks for showing us those details.

Cant wait to see you use it in anger  :thumbup:


Tim
Measure with a micrometer, mark with chalk, cut with an axe  -  MI0TME

Offline NickG

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #7 on: November 20, 2009, 04:24:02 AM »
Chris,

I know a guy at our club that made one of these for another member and he swears by it. Where did you get the electronics and did you have to solder all the circuitry yourself or was it sort of modular and just plug bits into other bits?

It definitely looks to be the way forward, guess the only thing is you need to hang it off the edge of the table for the motor to clear or pack it up.

How much of a saving do you think you made in total over division master then?

Very well done  :thumbup: :bow:

Nick
Location: County Durham (North East England)

Offline raynerd

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #8 on: November 20, 2009, 06:22:00 AM »
SpudEvans - in actual fact the mounting was quite easy once I got into it. I based it on the design that L.C Caine use on their divisionmaster. I used the retaining ring and lip as I wasn`t confident in securing the solid block ring into the end of the tube, this way the circle locks up and holds the tube to the rotary table. It also has the added advantage that you can spin motor mount tube to a position that suits. It would have been much easier to use a longer tube and then neater by using a thinner motor mount bracket, mine had to be thicker to get the extra clearence I needed.

Oldham couplings are a delight and this is where I went wrong with my X2 x-axis conversion. I`m inclined to say that I actually did it correctly and it would work if I`d have used Oldham coplings. It didn`t because the motor shaft was not 100% in line with the X-axis lead screw but Oldham couplings would compensate for this small amount. I think i`ll try it again shortly with couplings and I`ve a feeling it`ll work! I was only a mm or so off alignment but it was causing the lead screw to twist without them.

NickG - regarding hanging it off the table, the original handle on these is so large that they need mounting hanging off the table anyway so this is just the same but obviously takes a little more room.
Regarding cost - owning a Vertex Rotary table already, DivisionMaster costs:
Assembled unit      £200
PSU                 £ 35
Nema23 motor        £ 45
4" Table mount      £ 40
Shipping            £  7   
VAT @ 15%           £ 49.05
Total               £376.05 

I already had the motor so I just needed the electronics which cost me about £27 and the Oldham couplings £14 = £376- £41 =  Saved: £335
That being said, the DivisionMaster has a built in driver for the stepper motor but this indexer does not. Again I was lucky as I already had a 2.5A routoutCNC driver not in use but that would be an extra £25 on top. Still a lot cheaper. I had someone help me put it together so again I was lucky and for saying that, you can buy the DivisionMaster as a kit I think for about £150 ish? So you can save there.
I believe, that this indexer actually has much more functionality than the DivisionMaster and has quite a few alternative uses.
Well worth making one and it seems to work an absolute treat!
Chris
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Offline raynerd

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2009, 06:25:40 AM »
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Offline NickG

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #10 on: November 20, 2009, 07:02:53 AM »
Cheers Chris,

Looks good, sure it'll make things so much easier for what you are about to start on.

Nick
Location: County Durham (North East England)

Offline raynerd

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #11 on: November 24, 2009, 05:16:15 PM »
Still not quite finished but a couple of pics to update:

The keypad is a standard 4 x 4 matrix which comes with standard number inserts. It took ages getting the alignment right in MS Word and I`m sure there were far far better ways but I eventually got somewhere close and that I am happy with:


And then the box - Maplins Electronics Housing, was a pain to cut, wanted to split. You can see the two connectors at the bottom, left is a 2.1mm power jack to connect to my old spare laptop charger (which powers both the driver and the indexer) and on the right is a 4 pin DIN connector which I`m using to couple the stepper motor to the box. Since the indexer has 5 profiles for different devices I wanted to be able to change the motor quickly and easily.


This is posed,  :lol: but I wanted to see what it will look like mounted on the wall next to the mill and well it will look something like this. I have printed a mount or bezel that fits around the display, covers the screws and neatens the edge.


I`m really pleased I`ve gone down this route and it has worked really well! My next post, I should have it working and mounted on the wall. Perhaps a video as well.

Chris
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Offline Darren

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #12 on: November 24, 2009, 05:22:25 PM »
Chris I thought you had a mill  :scratch:
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Offline raynerd

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #13 on: November 24, 2009, 05:29:16 PM »
Sorry, I think my wording reads badly. It is posed next to my mill - it is next to my mill, the mill is off the camera shot. It is posed because it isn`t mounted on the wall and also the keybad isn`t stuck down yet. Does that make sense?
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Offline Darren

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #14 on: November 24, 2009, 05:31:45 PM »
Aww, the joke don't work if you delete posts Chris ....... :doh:
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Offline raynerd

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #15 on: November 24, 2009, 05:34:08 PM »
lmao Thanks Darren -  :wack: :wack: :wack: :wack:

It was a bugger to cut, when I held the case it scratched it, when I held the case loosely it chewed and spat it. The gap for the display can be excused, there was a problem with the indexer and I had to swap it and the new display was a few mm smaller so it caused the gap. The gap for the keypad was hacked out but is covered by the keypad. ..... now I`m making excuses....
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Offline raynerd

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #16 on: November 24, 2009, 05:34:46 PM »
Aww, the joke don't work if you delete posts Chris ....... :doh:

lol - sorry, hows this...

"I do....

?"

Chris
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Offline raynerd

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #17 on: November 24, 2009, 05:35:35 PM »
oh I get you now....penny dropped.

Bugger off!!     :lol:
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Offline Darren

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #18 on: November 24, 2009, 05:40:04 PM »
 :thumbup:

Nice going btw
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Offline raynerd

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #19 on: November 24, 2009, 05:47:55 PM »
Cheers matey - it really is an excellent little piece of kit.
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Offline dsquire

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #20 on: November 24, 2009, 06:16:23 PM »
Chris

Looks like a real nice addition to your shop.  :ddb: :ddb:



Darren & Chris
Is this a private joke or what am I missing here? (I may regret asking this.)  :doh:

Cheers  :beer:

Don
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Offline Darren

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #21 on: November 24, 2009, 06:21:05 PM »
Don...and friends ....

Chris showed us a couple of enclosure cut-outs ....

I said, "I thought you had a mill"

Chris, "I do ?"


My reply was, "Then why does it look like a rat's chewed it?"



But Chris deleted "I do?" ..... So I deleted  "Then why does it look like a rat's chewed it?" as it no longer made sense and might have even seemed offensive.



So Don, you happy you asked now?  :)
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Offline dsquire

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #22 on: November 24, 2009, 06:29:00 PM »
Darren

Makes sense now that I know the whole story. I was looking at it and wondering if it was me or what????. Now that will be one less thing on my mind as I don't like unsolved mysteries if I can find the answer. Thanks for clearing that up for me. Yup, I'm happy I asked. :) :) :)

Cheers  :beer:

Don
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Offline NickG

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #23 on: November 25, 2009, 06:15:39 AM »
Well, it's definitely confirmed you've got OCD lining the numbers up! You see, I would have put the numbers that are on their own bang in the middle of the cut out - can you either move them or remove the photos please!  :lol:
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Offline raynerd

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Re: 4" Vertex Rotary Table CNC conversion
« Reply #24 on: November 25, 2009, 08:14:25 AM »
Nick, the numbers are a PITA. They have to be printed as two full strips and then need aligning. It comes with precut strips but my replacements do a better job. They are not 100% but without staring at it they are good enough and do the job.

Chris
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