CNC router

CNC router

Postby drmrdr » Tue Feb 18, 2014 4:22 am

I am looking for a better CNC router than the Shark Pro Plus. I am looking for a machine that is more solid and the router head dose not flex so much. I would like a machine with 24" X 30" or 36" table. Looking for some suggestions from this forum.
Thanks.
Dave
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Re: CNC router

Postby Xxray » Tue Feb 18, 2014 6:39 am

Cammaster Stinger 1 is what I went with, and couldn't be happier.
Solid metal construction, 24x36" cutting area, solid 5" of Z, weighs almost 400 lbs, no flex at all. Great support, base unit is superb but has a variety of addons that make it even more powerful.
Shopbot has their "desktop" model, has a smaller cutting area [24" x 18"] and it has less Z clearance and weighs less than 1/3rd what the Stinger does, is also well supported.
I have heard a few folks very happy with Romaxx WD-1, smaller cutting area though [20x30"].

So those are the 3 I'd recommend checking, obviously I'd strongly recommend the Cam but the others are worthy contenders. Weight is a factor because obviously, the more it weighs the more stoutly built it is. The Stinger 1 is actually not a desktop but rather a benchtop, it would crush the average desk whereas the others would not. Price point is up to you to check into, and shipping is also a factor with all of them ,, But the last thing you want is something you might easily grow out of again instead of into.
Don't overlook what comes with them as well, some are priced for the bare machine - Router, computer, CNC machining program, software are all extras, whereas with the Stinger they are all included in the base price. [Don't quote me on that, haven't had the need to shop around for quite a while, but keep that in mind when making comparisons].
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Re: CNC router

Postby Rcnewcomb » Tue Feb 18, 2014 7:04 am

As mentioned earlier the CAMaster and ShopBot machines would be a step up for you. Answers to a few of these questions might be helpful:
What material are you cutting?
How many hours a day/week/month are you cutting?
How do you hold your material? (clamps, vacuum, tape)
Do you different bits on the same job?
Is noise a factor? i.e. are you in a residential or industrial area?
Is 220V power available?
Is 3 phase power available?
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Re: CNC router

Postby Leo » Tue Feb 18, 2014 5:55 pm

Dave there are a LOT of options out there.

Two guys here mentioned Cammaster.

There is also Techno, Larken, Shopbot, many "good" Chinese machines, MultiCam --- and many many many more.

Then there are some good kits and good plane to build your own.

Lots of reviews and comments.

There will certainly be the chevy vs ford debates - lots of that stuff.

You really need to do your due diligence
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Re: CNC router

Postby Xxray » Tue Feb 18, 2014 8:11 pm

I would stay away from Chinese machines, you get what you pay for and you don't want something breaking down with what support if has based in Asia.
Someone wanting to upgrade from a Shark would not likely want to go the DIY route, so the options for that sized table turnkey are not all that numerous.
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Re: CNC router

Postby davewierenga » Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:26 pm

I went with a Stinger 1 and couldn't be happier.
Dave :D
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Re: CNC router

Postby 4DThinker » Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:45 pm

You might also check out Probotix.com. They make 25"x25" (Comet), 25" x 36" (Asteroid), and 25"x50 (Meteor)" versions of a solid all-aluminum design that comes complete with the PC/Monitor/keyboard/mouse/jogstick needed to run it. All built-to-order, and with limit switches and an E-stop button already mounted on the frame. No Touch Plate, and an MDF bed are the two negatives. I bought their 25" x 50" Meteor model for $3995, which is less than what I have into my original Shark.

If you want larger, they'll happily assemble a 5' x 9' (much beefier) version for about 10k.
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Re: CNC router

Postby jbushey » Tue Feb 18, 2014 10:31 pm

I have a Techno, which I really love. However, if I move to another machine I would seriously consider the Legacy. Plus, they use Aspire and get quite creative with their 5 axis potential. Tracy gives great demonstrations at The Wood Working Shows. I would never get a CNC machine with just a router, you really need the HP in a Spindle whether air cooled or liquid cooled. Prioritize what you love to do and what machine would best fit your needs. There are lots of options now, as said before. Watching You Tube videos will also help with your decision making. One additional thought, you may just want to upgrade your router and not the whole machine. Just my 2 cents.
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Re: CNC router

Postby drmrdr » Wed Feb 19, 2014 1:28 am

Thanks for all the input. 99% of my projects are cutting wood plaques and trophies. The router head on my shark just keeps getting weaker and can not cut repeat parts and be accurate.
This causes many wood parts to be fire wood. I wood rather buy a machine designed for strength rather than rebuild the shark like many have done. You guys have given me a lot of options and now I will need to research to find a good fit for me. With a good machine I may try some aluminum designs all though that is not high on the list. 220 is a option but not 3 phase. I can now start looking at all the machines you guys have listed and ones that may yet get listed. The first ones I will look at are the ones some of you own and are happy with.
Thanks again
Dave
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Re: CNC router

Postby rscrawford » Wed Feb 19, 2014 1:41 am

I started with a Shark as well. It was great to learn on, but is extremely limited in what it will do.

My advice is to get the most solid machine you can afford. I have a CAMaster Cobra which I love. I looked at Laguna's machines as well, but the one they showed me had rust all over the rails which immediately turned me off (they didn't have time to clean it up after shipping from China). Its a plus when the frame is welded and then machined so the rails are parallel. A spindle is much better than a router, but if you have limited budget I'd go for a more sturdy machine with a router, and upgrade to a spindle later.
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Re: CNC router

Postby Gc3 » Wed Feb 19, 2014 9:51 pm

Xxray wrote:I would stay away from Chinese machines, you get what you pay for and you don't want something breaking down with what support if has based in Asia.
Someone wanting to upgrade from a Shark would not likely want to go the DIY route, so the options for that sized table turnkey are not all that numerous.



Not all Chinese machines are the same...do some research before making a general statements such as this. I purchased a 4x8 machine from China almost 2 years ago and it has been a serious workhorse without any problems. It has cut everything I have put on the table with amazing accuracy. I ran 8 4x8 panels for a ceiling cutting 80mm deep in solid wood, each panel took 32 hrs...machine stopped only to change the blanks...We have been running this machine 6-8 hrs a day, 5-6 days a week since last september cutting solid wood door panels for another shop with no issues. And there is support, spare parts from the factory. I also have a older shopbot, both have their function in our shop, we don't compare the two. I suggest drmrdr to look at a Chinese machines.
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Re: CNC router

Postby Jerry In Maine » Wed Feb 19, 2014 9:58 pm

CNCROUTERPARTS.COM

two levels of machines. I have the standard. Very nice machine and the price was right for me.
I'm just a number in a great design
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Re: CNC router

Postby Xxray » Wed Feb 19, 2014 10:34 pm

Gc3 wrote:
Xxray wrote:I would stay away from Chinese machines, you get what you pay for and you don't want something breaking down with what support if has based in Asia.
Someone wanting to upgrade from a Shark would not likely want to go the DIY route, so the options for that sized table turnkey are not all that numerous.



Not all Chinese machines are the same...do some research before making a general statements such as this. I purchased a 4x8 machine from China almost 2 years ago and it has been a serious workhorse without any problems. It has cut everything I have put on the table with amazing accuracy. I ran 8 4x8 panels for a ceiling cutting 80mm deep in solid wood, each panel took 32 hrs...machine stopped only to change the blanks...We have been running this machine 6-8 hrs a day, 5-6 days a week since last september cutting solid wood door panels for another shop with no issues. And there is support, spare parts from the factory. I also have a older shopbot, both have their function in our shop, we don't compare the two. I suggest drmrdr to look at a Chinese machines.


Well, good for you but I am free to make any recommendation I please and I do not recommend Asian machines when there are quite a few superior domestic options avilable, albeit perhaps a bit pricier. All one really has to do is browse CNC zone for the almost unlimited made in China horror stories to have second thoughts about trying to cut corners to save a buck.
Doug
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Re: CNC router

Postby rej » Thu Feb 20, 2014 5:25 am

how many Chinese machines have you owned xray?
http://www.3dsigncamp.com
http://www.roctechusacnc.com
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Re: CNC router

Postby Rcnewcomb » Thu Feb 20, 2014 7:58 pm

Dave,
The fact that you have 220V power available gives you more possibilities than if were restricted to 110V.

You may wish to find out who is near you (or within a few hours drive) that already has one of the machines you are considering.

Frequently when you contact the machine vendors and ask they will let you know of other owners in the area that you could contact. Some vendors pay a small fee to the owner for demonstrating the machine.
- Randall Newcomb
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