Series 1 3D printed Relief cutting machine

Cut and carve relief sculpture with a mouse!

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A precision 3D printed machine that carves in wood and foam to produce precise relief carvings. This project was made for makers to make!

Series 1 3D printed Mouse operated Relief Sculpture machine

This is my 3rd machine this year in this series.

This machine is designed to cut reliefs into a single face media freeform by the artist. It can cut foams and wood. The machine offers real time freedom for the user to carve and create quickly, accurately and at various depths into the media with precise control.
The workpiece is held in a screw clamp vise and can hold up to 3 X 3 inch media. The vise is mounted to a two stage axis for left,right up and down access to the face of the workpiece. Positioning is done by moving the mouse with a specially designed driver and firmware.
I posted some details about the mouse controlled axis last week.

The rotary tool is mounted to a specialized sliding axis driven by a stepper motor. The motor is connected to an offset and a lever that pushes and pulls the tool into and out of the workpiece. A keypad is attached to the machine which allows incremental toolfeeds into the workpiece at precise depths in 3/32 inch steps, allowing the user to cut at any depth desired and hold that depth until another is reselected. This control combined with the mouse movements allow the user to make very detailed cuts at any depth desired for relief effects. This axis also uses a unique driver and firmware to control the tool head.
The cutting motor is variable speed and set by a knob for the given material and uses a ball cutter or router bits(dremel size 1/8 inch shanks).
I conceived this machine for the artist who creates reliefs, cut stamps and general small sculpting. A great advantage is no hand fatige, and the ability to effortless control depth for better detail, yet still allow freedom of creative expression.
This machine only makes a small mess when in use(chips mostly fall down just below the workpiece). It is lightweight and highly portable. The structure and base components are mostly 3D printed, and otherwise uses common inexpensive parts to construct.

I have had some fun with this and plan to make some items when I take a break from building machines.

  • The machine foundation

    castvee802/07/2017 at 15:45 0 comments

    I developed an interesting and functional base for this and the last machine I made which serves as the support for all the machines components. I call it tube and block fabrication, and as the name suggests is comprised of 3D printed blocks and short tubes which are interconnected by short lengths of steel tubing or rod.

    These are made by printing and assembling the blocks and tubes then setting them all together on a flat surface and gluing them solid in place, allowing to dry until rigid. I use loctite brand superglue for all my machine assembly work.

    This provides a very solid structure on which to build the machine and is inexpensive. The steel rod can be standard 3/8 diameter obtained at any hardware store and cut to length as required.

    Here is the foundation for this machine.

    You will note that the axis upright area has no steel rod between them. The upright assembly mounts directly over the 4 block matrix.

    This is the mounting areas for the other components. These thick flats provide support for the toolmotor axis actuator as well as some electronics.

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