- Feb 21, 2022
Was thinking more about (aside from renting some space and buying a used CNC) how I would approach the problem the OP has: small space, limited 1-phase electrical, limited budget. A bit wild but I wonder whether aquiring an old small horizontal mill like a Burke No 4 and converting to CNC might be interesting. The work envelope would be smaller than OPs current plans, but the machine could cut anything....those little guys were very robust within the work envelope they presented. There is a challenge to having sufficient power to raise/lower the z/knee that would need solving. One could put a very nice head on it such as a Bridgeport M or Rusnok. Also, one gets a universal mill, both vertical and horizontal spindles.
Part of the WAF is that I built it myself, and that it looks more like a robot than an old industrial machine. I love the looks of old iron, but I can understand my wife's feelings on that. So converting an existing machine (if a good set of bones could be found) is certainly a more straightforward approach, but it just would put a lot more pressure on me to 'get that thing out of the house' if you understand. Due to the big castings it would also be much harder to move, support and dispose of. My machine's largest parts (other than the base plate) are all 30kg or less, and are small enough in size that they can be disposed of without special handling. I plan for success, but I plan for failure too.