What XY location are you using...and WHY?

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What XY location are you using...and WHY?

Postby NL7U » Tue Nov 19, 2019 4:35 pm

Is there any advantage to using the XY setup at a corner rather than at "center mass"? I use center mass, but could be persuaded to change if there is a good enough reason. Thanks....
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Re: What XY location are you using...and WHY?

Postby sharkcutup » Wed Nov 20, 2019 9:13 am

It usually depends on the project. If it is a project where there is little to no carving or few bit changes then the middle/center setup location is used. But if the majority of the carving is removed and/or a lot of bit changes required then a corner setup is much more feasible.

Why? -- this may be more true for the Z-axis than for the xy because the xy is just a matter of a convenience location whereas the Z-Axis would no longer exist once being carved out (as in a pocket for example) thereby a corner would be much more feasible especially when resetting z-axis at bit changes.

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Re: What XY location are you using...and WHY?

Postby Kayvon » Wed Nov 20, 2019 10:59 am

I user a corner start position almost exclusively.

[*]It makes it easy to be sure I'm not wasting material on the sides
[*]It saves me the trouble of finding the absolute center
[*]Unlike the center, it's uncommon to drill into the starting corner, so I can continue to use it for Z offset checks when changing bits

I'm sure there are plenty of good reasons to use the center also, but the corner has always worked well for me.
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Re: What XY location are you using...and WHY?

Postby zeighty » Sat Nov 30, 2019 11:39 pm

I use the center almost always. I cannot remember the last time I used a corner.
Some of my work includes pre-made cutting boards with corners that are round. I have also done some work where a custom woodworker customer provided the blanks and there was no waste (no profile cut). I actually messed up his first one and his customer was leaving for the UK the next morning. He was smart and had brought two with him. The second one I used center for x/y and was hooked.
So, I found my work was off a mm or two or 10, as finding the corner was not easy. At least not for me. Finding center is a breeze for me. Even with circles. I use pre-cut circle blanks to make awards for Ultimate Frisbee teams. The last set I did was 32.
I do use a touch plate and can jog my gantry to an area that is still original material thickness to set Z, if necessary. So far I have not had to do this as I have not had a job where at least some lettering was still at original material height.
Bottom line - I use center due to errors I made trying to find the precise placement in a corner.
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Re: What XY location are you using...and WHY?

Postby Kayvon » Tue Dec 03, 2019 1:47 pm

Zeighty, that makes a lot of sense. If you don't have a good corner (e.g., curved corners) then you have to align X and Y individually on the sides. And if you don't have a side (i.e. a round object) you can't even do that.

You make another good point about not cutting a profile. Every path I run includes a profile cut--I hadn't even considered the possibility of cutting/engraving on something that's already cut, like a blank. That's another great example of when the center point makes more sense, especially if your blank sizes vary at all.
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Re: What XY location are you using...and WHY?

Postby OCEdesigns » Thu Dec 05, 2019 12:08 pm

I use the center for about 90% of my projects. It just seems easier for me. I use a corner at times now but mostly center. Finding center is usually pretty easy also.
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Re: What XY location are you using...and WHY?

Postby 4DThinker » Fri Jan 17, 2020 7:49 pm

I cut projects for college students, and can't trust them to accurately mark the center of their material. I'll only use the center when what is being cut out is smaller than the board it is being cut out from. I typically use the bottom left corner, and have set an offset of 1/2 the bit diameter I'll be using. I use a piece of paper, and sneak (.005" steps) the bit up on the left edge until the paper is trapped. I'll back up one .005" step, remove the paper strip, then jog back one step before setting X=0. I repeat the same on the bottom edge to set Y. I set Z wherever on the top any critical cuts will be done. On our Shark I've made sure the board is parallel to the t-slots in the bed before clamping down to cut.

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Re: What XY location are you using...and WHY?

Postby csmithwoodworking » Thu Jan 30, 2020 10:32 am

Mount a fence (can be strips of wood) to the table that is set just outside, but on the border of the X/Y. Run a profile pass or manually jog the machine to cut the fence square to this axis. Make a block that can sit on top of the fence and references the inside corner where X & Y meet. You will always have a corner reference and won't even need your part on the table. This is perfect for setting up projects quickly, regardless of size, and the corner won't change, unlike the center point.
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