Contemplating handwork

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WillAdams
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Contemplating handwork

Post by WillAdams » Mon Jul 22, 2013 12:31 am

Spent the weekend switching back-and-forth between running pre-made files on my machine (still working on a nicer cigar box tool kit insert) and using hand tools to build a(n archery) bow (hand saw, block and jack planes and a pocket knife used as a scraper --- tomorrow will be a round bastard rasp and whittling to make nocks, then a series of rasps and small planes to shape the belly, then tillering).

Using the hand tools is much quieter, far more relaxing, and much more enjoyable and satisfying (to me) --- and I can use the exercise. Rather makes me regret not getting the Jointmaker Pro ( http://www.bridgecitytools.com/default/ ... r-pro.html ) I was considering instead of a Shapeoko.

The only advantage I can think of for CNC are the ability to share / re-use files (which reminds me I need to figure out how to place my tool design files on github_ and the flexibility of not needing ``just one more tool'' (just need to write another file) is there anything else I'm forgetting? The major disadvantages (for me) are the noise and the need to monitor the machine.

I'm thinking that some sort of hybrid workflow might suit --- use the CNC to build jigs, then use the jigs w/ hand tools (though storing the jigs will be a problem). This might work well w/ the machine in the shed (I do my woodworking on the back porch).
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twforeman
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Re: Contemplating handwork

Post by twforeman » Mon Jul 22, 2013 1:16 pm

I'm a HUGE fan of using the appropriate tool for the job.

One of the things I make is a block of wood with 50 bored holes in it. In the past I have used my drill press to make these using spacer blocks to position the holes. It takes about 15 minutes to make one on the drill press.

I was hoping the ShapeOko could automat this boring (pun intended) task for me. Unfortunately, even driving it as fast as I can, it takes twice as long, burns the wood and dulls the cutters very quickly. Especially when using MDF.

I can hand sharpen my Forstner bits, not so much the carbide end mills. So I go back to using the drill press.

On the other hand, the ShapeOko is perfect for putting profiles on things. I make grips for 1911 pistols and used to cut them out and profile them by hand. Probably took a couple of hours per set. With the ShapeOko it takes about 15 minutes to cut the outside profile and 15 minutes to surface them. And they are more consistent compared to doing them by hand. Total win. But I still use a jig and the drill press to put the holes in them because it's the best method.

When I made some hold downs for my ShapeOko out of 3/8" plywood I cut them on the table saw. I used the ShapeOko to mill the slotted hole in them.

It's all about using the most efficient tool for the job.
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bjbsquared
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Re: Contemplating handwork

Post by bjbsquared » Wed Jul 24, 2013 1:12 pm

I'm a HUGE fan of using the appropriate tool for the job.

One of the things I make is a block of wood with 50 bored holes in it. In the past I have used my drill press to make these using spacer blocks to position the holes. It takes about 15 minutes to make one on the drill press.

I was hoping the ShapeOko could automat this boring (pun intended) task for me. Unfortunately, even driving it as fast as I can, it takes twice as long, burns the wood and dulls the cutters very quickly. Especially when using MDF.

I can hand sharpen my Forstner bits, not so much the carbide end mills. So I go back to using the drill press.
This is interesting to me. It sounds like a part that is repeated. Perhaps a drill bit and a speed controller or a drill motor would make things better for this.
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twforeman
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Re: Contemplating handwork

Post by twforeman » Thu Jul 25, 2013 3:51 pm

Oh, yeah, if I had a "real" CNC mill, it would support the low RPM (1250) required for drilling. Which would be nice.

But even if I put a motor controller on my router, it wouldn't have enough torque. Not to mention that the chuck is the wrong kind and is too small. And there isn't enough clearance under the router for a drill bit. :)
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