This new project grew from a symbiotic pair of projects with some development history:
- #Minamil: a minimal CNC mill
- Remarkably successful (relative to my expectations) development of, as far as I know, the lowest cost 3-axis CNC mill/router core that actually works
- Very compact, not very strong, but very precise within limits of shallow cuts with small tools
- HaD Prize 2021 finalist (via a separate project created per HaDPrize rules)
- Favorably recognized by unrelated other people
- Simple CNC elements can work well in a very simple, even crudely built frame
- #"Desk Accessory" CNC Milling Machine
- entirely optional decoration around the "minimal" CNC core
- aims to build a complete, compact unit to park on a shelf and use at will in ordinary places
- previously a slow "aspirational" project parked at early proof-of-concept
- recently bumped with a new build that gets a lot closer to realizing the "desk accessory" idea
This new "Minamil 3dp" project introduces a substantially different implementation of the "Minamil" CNC core combined with fresh progress toward "desk accessory" packaging.
Why spawn a new "Minamil" project?
I think this new design for 3d printed parts, vs laser cut, combined with new work toward "desk accessory" packaging, represents a step change in potential utility to someone who wants the capabilities of a precise little CNC without committing space for a machine and the mess it throws off. Wider accessibility of 3d printing and much more simple assembly make this design more practical to build. A completely new frame configuration and more comprehensive integration into "desk accessory" packaging make this design more practical to use.
I plan to submit this project for the current HaD Prize Gear Up Challenge, where the rules require a new project anyhow.