Wherever we put the machine we can maintain it at a positive air pressure like I did with the shapeoko computer upstairs. This will prevent dust from entering the machine by having filtered air leaking out any openings. We need positive pressure as part of the ventilation system anyway.
Yep, I’m pretty sure the one in the office is already wired to talk to the doorbell, so tracing out the wires and putting some on the other floors would be handy. If we can link up to the electric strikes we already want to put in, so much the better. Failing that, we hack them into network-connected intercom units and tie them to the infrastructure that way. Regardless, they are a nice set of parts to provide features we want.
A co worker of mine showed me a cool mod he did to his Cell phone. Took the lens out of a cheap Dollar Store Laser pointer. Cut a piece of tube that the inside diameter matched the outside diameter of the lens. Then mounted it in front of the camera on his Smart phone. Now you have a 130x zoom. We used it to find where the the helium leaks were on a cryostat.
Was in this evening looking at being able to set the speed (RPM) of the spindle.
Made an important discovery … the spindle has been rotating backwards all this time. So, rather than cutting the material it was beating it to death (wood) or melting it. We reversed the spindle direction (just flipped 2 of the 3 leads going to the motor … any 2 will do it) and suddenly it was making an awesome cut in plastic where before it was melting it.
We also managed to change the spindle speed manually by setting the maximum spindle speed (p105) directly on the controller. For plastic we were getting better cuts at a spindle frequency of 115 Hz and a feed rate of (@arasbm what was the travel speed?).
We are still figuring out how to set spindle speed and rotation (forward or backward) directly via LinuxCNC.
There’s a spot behind the building that we discussed setting up for blacksmithing, casting, and other hot work… Currently it is uneven dirt with grass, and mostly used by random people who are not members of the makerspace to smoke, hang out, and do illicit activities. We’d like to put a stop to that.
In order to turn it into a good hot-work area though, we’d need to grade the dirt, put down some sort of fire-protective surface, build a sheltered area, and secure it with a fence of some sort. Probably a fence topped with wire, since we’d have liability issues if we had a kiln or furnace in there… That sort of gear stays hot for many hours. We can’t have it exposed to random people going back there for a smoke and burning themselves on a glass-melting hot kiln. We also need anything out there to not get stolen or exposed to thermal shock (leaking roof etc) Dripping water into a pot of molten metal is incredibly dangerous.
Conclusion we came to back in August when some of the MËtÄL! room folks discussed it was that it would have to wait until next summer at least. Combination of funds, time, supplies, and better use of our efforts to get the existing facilities squared away. Personally, there’s little I’d like better than to have a dedicated space with a big old-iron anvil, and a forge to bring a chunk of steel up to temperature and beat it with a hammer until I’m too tired to be frustrated about anything any more. I know of no better way to relieve stress than that. But the vulture is a patient bird, and I am prepared to wait until everything falls into place rather than rushing such a job.