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CNC Shark Forum • View topic - Milling aluminum

Milling aluminum

Discussion about the CNC Shark Pro Plus HD

Moderators: sbk, al wolford

Re: Milling aluminum

Postby Glug » Wed Mar 05, 2014 2:26 pm

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Re: Milling aluminum

Postby milo30 » Wed Mar 05, 2014 2:31 pm

Which bit did you use and what kind of feed and speeds did you find that worked the best?
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Re: Milling aluminum

Postby pjmayer » Fri Mar 07, 2014 9:42 am

Attachments
DSC_0548s.jpg
center hole cut on Shark Pro Plus HD
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Re: Milling aluminum

Postby rungemach » Fri Mar 07, 2014 11:02 am

A good discussion of aluminum cutting so far.

Here is what I have found works for me.

I use an up-spiral 2 flute .250 dia carbide bit. Straight flute bits tend to chatter with these hard materials. (and don't clear chips well either)
Depth of cut per pass is .02 - .03 inches ( yes, thats a LOT of passes) travel speed is 20 ipm and plunge speed is 20 ipm.
rpm is 8000-12,000. definitely not full router speed. The cut is done dry with no lubricant. all of the cutting is done at the tip of the bit, but tool life is still acceptable but not optimal.

YOU MUST RAMP THE CUTS.

A straight plunge at any speed is asking for problems. These bits were meant to cut while traveling, not plunging.
I try and use a 1 inch long ramp. Setting the plunge ipm the same as the feed ipm lets the machine transition from ramp to straight cut without a speed change (smoother)

cutting aluminum is possible , but painfully slow to get good cuts. I would not suggest a Shark for someone that wants to cut these hard materials often, but for a project or two now and then, it can work if you take the time to get the cutting parameters dialed in. If you want to get the best surface quality , I suggest cutting the main passes .005 larger than desired and follow up with a single full depth pass at the true size. you can do this with the same toolpath if you make the tool diameter larger for the "roughing" passes and true size for the finish pass.

attached are some pictures of a aluminum router clamp during cutting and afterwards. these were done with no finishing pass.

cutting clamp.jpg
aluminum during the cut


router clamp.jpg
aluminum router clamp vs plastic
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Re: Milling aluminum

Postby Glug » Wed Mar 26, 2014 9:48 am

Attachments
P1300197.JPG
P1300211.JPG
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Re: Milling aluminum

Postby DougE » Sun Mar 30, 2014 7:34 am

To rungemach;

Do you happen to have the file for the router mount you machined ?

I am intending to mill my own aluminum after the next project for a Shark Pro HD.

I'd appreciate if you could post it.

Thank you

Doug E
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Re: Milling aluminum

Postby rungemach » Wed Apr 02, 2014 5:03 pm

Doug

Here is a dxf drawing file. you can use the profile for the inner hole which has the recesses to fit the porter cable routers.

This is the same profile that was sent to Sam at Dixie billet,
who makes these clamps out of thicker billet aluminum, and sells them for around fifty bucks.

Differences from the stock clamp, besides material, is that the recesses for the router side pins are a bit deeper than the factory recesses to prevent the router from riding on the pin and not getting a good "full body grip" on the router body. The factory one I had for a sample was held from tightening on the body by the router pins, so I made the recesses deeper.
Also, the tab for the pinch bolt is also beefier.

When I make something like this , I will just spot the locations for the drilled holes by using an 1/8" drill bit and touching the surface , maybe .040 deep. Then go to a drill press to drill the hole. The shark does not like drilling aluminum.
Attachments
HD router mount drawingr3.dxf
(52.8 KiB) Downloaded 179 times
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Re: Milling aluminum

Postby DougE » Thu Apr 03, 2014 3:09 pm

Thank you very much 'rungemach' for sharing the dxf. file.

This will come in handy soon as I expect to be breaking down the Shark and finally putting it into an enclosure.

Again, I, and it looks like collective 'we' appreciate your sharing.

Thank you kindly

Doug E
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Re: Milling aluminum

Postby rungemach » Thu Apr 03, 2014 3:28 pm

Info on Sams clamp can be found here.

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=3314&p=19037

a bit over 50 bucks inc shipping.
( disclaimer, I make no money from his clamps, he is a separate business)
Sam has made other aluminum parts for me, but not shark clamps. Very nice guy to work with.

I believe he is making them in aluminum over 1" thick, which would be hard to do on a shark.
I have found 1/2 inch aluminum will work pretty well, but thicker is better...
on my routers I use two 1/2 inch thick clamps with a separation between. but that is a modified z axis design.
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Re: Milling aluminum

Postby rossjonnes » Thu Feb 06, 2020 5:21 am

Who has been able to sample the various products on this list and can be able to pick out the best one?
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