What is a good inexpensive "test" material for milling?

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kristenanne77
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What is a good inexpensive "test" material for milling?

Post by kristenanne77 » Wed Jun 11, 2014 4:06 pm

I know the best test material is the material you plan on using ... But sometimes that might be a very expensive piece of wood. So I am looking for something not very expensive to test that the pattern is correct, the size is correct ... In general to make sure the program is correct. Before spending the big bucks.
Suggestions?

Thanks
K

Woodworker
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Re: What is a good inexpensive "test" material for milling?

Post by Woodworker » Wed Jun 11, 2014 4:15 pm

I use MDF but it is dusty. I tried 1" solid foam insulation but it too was very dusty and staticly clung to everything. Next time I am going to test on 1/4" plywood. I doubt I will have issues with thickness so just testing the shape may be good enough. Popular is an inexpensive wood in the US.
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WillAdams
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Re: What is a good inexpensive "test" material for milling?

Post by WillAdams » Wed Jun 11, 2014 4:18 pm

In theory one could use machinable wax, collect the milled off debris and re-melt things.

One person did lay down a bunch of flour on his bed, then ran the endmill (not spinning) through it to test when people were asleep.
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akhlut
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Re: What is a good inexpensive "test" material for milling?

Post by akhlut » Wed Jun 11, 2014 4:39 pm

Ikea cutting boards

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Woodworker
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Re: What is a good inexpensive "test" material for milling?

Post by Woodworker » Wed Jun 11, 2014 5:31 pm

Aren't they only 1/4"?
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WillAdams
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Re: What is a good inexpensive "test" material for milling?

Post by WillAdams » Wed Jun 11, 2014 5:47 pm

Woodworker wrote:Aren't they only 1/4"?
Maybe just slightly over: http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/90202268/
Product dimensions
Length: 13 ½ "
Width: 9 ½ "
Thickness: ¼ "


Length: 34 cm
Width: 24 cm
Thickness: 8 mm
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Schruminator
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Re: What is a good inexpensive "test" material for milling?

Post by Schruminator » Wed Jun 11, 2014 6:08 pm

akhlut wrote:Ikea cutting boards

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If you're looking for HDPE, Google for plastic supply places or plastic fabricators in your area. There's a small shop on the way home from my work that has a whole room full of plastic scraps (whatever is leftover from the larger jobs customers pay for) that are darn cheap-- all sorts of different plastic types and thicknesses. You find what you want and they'll pull out a tape measure, get a rough idea of the area and charge you by the square foot.

Anyways, call a few places and see if there are any around. As for wood scraps to experiment on, I've seen a couple people post about talking to a local cabinet maker, but I haven't gotten that far yet.
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twforeman
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Re: What is a good inexpensive "test" material for milling?

Post by twforeman » Wed Jun 11, 2014 7:13 pm

I tend to do my trial work in maple.

Poplar would be another good choice for inexpensive material.
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Re: What is a good inexpensive "test" material for milling?

Post by Improbable Construct » Wed Jun 11, 2014 9:38 pm

I usually use MDF or plywood for test cuts.
I generally trust my workflow and machine now so I really only run test cuts when I am using a one of a kind piece of wood.
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Marty M.
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Re: What is a good inexpensive "test" material for milling?

Post by Marty M. » Wed Jun 11, 2014 10:31 pm

What about pine? A lot of times you can find bargain pieces at a home center.

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