18 x 24 Tools


Tools Needed for Construction

The aluminum components are made from standard sized stock that can be cut and trimmed with a hacksaw or a carbide toothed miter saw.
The photo shows a section of flat bar with its template being cut by a miter saw.

The steel rails are also standard sizes, which can be cut with a hacksaw.

The base is ¾ inch plywood that is stiffened with 2x3 framing lumber. The tee slots are made of 1x4 boards. These wooden components can be cut with a range of tools from a hand saw to a table saw.

Cut aluminum with carbide toothed miter saw.
Cutting aluminum with miter saw.
 
The metal components are held together with machine screws and bolts with nuts and washers.

Some of the screws and studs are tightened into holes in the aluminum that are threaded with taps.

Taps are also used for threading holes for the set screws in the pinions.
The tap sizes used are #8-32, #10-32 and #10-24.

Some of the bearing axles are full thread ¼-20 bolts (tap bolts). A die can be used to extend the threads on standard bolts should tap bolts be unavailable.
Threaded rod can also be used for the axles, which makes a die unnecessary.
Tap Beam for 18x24
Tapping end of aluminum channel.
 
Some bearings are in recesses that are drilled with 7/8 and 5/8 inch Forstner bits. Image below. These could be drilled with a hand held power drill, but a drill press simplifies the job.

Forstner Bit in Drill Press
Forstner bit drilling aluminum.
1-5/8 inch holes are cut in the aluminum for the steppers' faces. These holes can be cut/drilled with low cost hole saws like the ones shown below.
A hand held power drill will work, but a drill press makes the drilling easier.

Hole Saws
Hole saws.
 
The dimensions are in fractional inches, not decimal inches, so carpenters' measuring tools serve well.

A combination square helps to align components.

A nut driver that fits the nuts for #8 machine screws is needed to reach behind the carriage.
A small socket wrench with an extension can be used in place of the nut driver.
Other tools needed to build this machine are the basics including screwdrivers, pliers, small wrenches, center punch and drill bits.

There are no special metal working tools required for building this machine other than the taps, a carbide toothed saw blade and a hacksaw.
 
These plans do not include directions for the software and electronics because the suppliers cover this information for their own products. These plans do give directions for deriving the Step per Inch values that are needed to configure the software for these machines.
The machines were all designed to use NEMA 23 stepper and drive components such as those from Geckodrive, Xylotex and HobbyCNC.Mach3 and TurboCNC are popular controller software options. Other software and motor suppliers can be used.
The above vendors work with the Do It Yourself market and have help forums and documentation.
 
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These plans are also in the five plans bundle, which includes the 10x9, 13x13, 18x24, 25x25 and 24x48.
 
18 x 24 V Bearing CNC Machine
18x24V Bearing
$29.95
18x24 Plan
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All five CNC plans
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Five Plans
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