The Best Speedio for Small Garage Prototyping
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  1. #1
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    Default The Best Speedio for Small Garage Prototyping

    Looking to pull the trigger on a compact Brother Speedio this month.

    I'm part of a small non-profit engineering team (5+) doing full-size humanoid telepresence robotics; we need to control our leadtimes as we have tight schedule arcs. Plan is get small/medium 1-off parts done in-house and outsource large/high-qty parts.

    Space is limited because we haven't yet committed to the cost and geographic-cascade of a dedicated workshop. The garage door is standard-small; 2.4m (94in) wide by 2.1m (83in) high. The floor is tight, wall-to-wall; 2.7m (106in) wide by 5.8m (228in) deep. With a small space like this I have to consider the direction at which the forklift can carry the machine as that constrains install positions (even the forklift width can matter).

    The smallest Speedios (floor area) seem to be the S300X2 (1.08m X 2.46m) and M200X3 (1.28m X 3.87m), with the next size-step up adding S500X2 (1.56m X 2.2m), M300X3 (1.52m X 3.87m), F600X1 (1.8m X 2.47m).

    Workholding interface is a key factor. The SX2/FX1 (3-axis) machines have conventional tables (600mm X 400mm). The MX3 machines (5-axis) have a ISO702-4 #5 round-nose (140mm dia M200X3, 170mm dia M300X3) for the turning spindle.

    Question 1: do we prioritize the versatile machining+turning of the M200X3 and accept limited workholding (most of our parts are small) or prioritize the flexible workholding-area of the S300X2 and accept the base 3-axis machining?

    Question 2: do we have enough space for any of the 3 bigger machines?

    Options we like:

    Dual Contact (Big Plus) 16K rpm Spindle

    Manual Pulse Generator (MPG)

    Tool Setter/Breakage Detector

    Automatic Oil, Automatic Grease

    Top Cover (standard on MX3)

    Mist Collector

    Head Coolant Nozzles

    Chip Shower (required on M200X3)

    Higher-Capacity ATC (standard on MX3)

    Coolant Thru Spindle (CTS/TSC), Cyclone Filter (unsure)

    LED Light (unsure, how quality are their LEDs)

    A Axis Clamp (only on MX3) (unsure)

    High Accuracy Mode BII

    Spindle Airflow solenoid (unconfirmed avail) (can be added manually by installing to on-machine PLC)

    ---

    Reference Links:

    MX3: Specifications | M300X3/M200X3 | Machine Tools | Brother

    SX2: Specifications | S700X2/S500X2/S300X2 |Machine Tools|Brother

    FX1: Specifications | F600X1 | Machine Tools | Brother

    M200X3 workholding: https://youtu.be/bBbO5KbelQw?t=21

    M300X3 turning: https://youtu.be/P09hd8SRpWU?t=8

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    Small parts is a relative term. I wouldn't recommend the M300X3 for parts smaller than 4"x4" or 3x3 especially if you need to reach the centerline at A90. The M200 gets closer to the spindle face and Center Of Rotation in Z than the M300 by 50mm so shorter tools can be used. The M300 shifts the Z stroke up for larger parts.

    The items below are standard on the models with CTSI package stocked in North America. (All machines except S500 14 Tool 10k non CTSI)

    Dual Contact (Big Plus) 16K rpm (std M200X3, optional S300/500 16k)

    Automatic Grease

    Top Cover

    Chip Shower and 150L coolant tank

    Higher-Capacity ATC (22 standard on MX3, 21 on S300/500 CTSI)

    Coolant Thru Spindle (CTS/TSC) capable, need to add pump

    A Axis Clamp (standard M200 and 300 MX3)

    The S300 and S500 16k CTSI machines are currently in stock in North America. There is a limited qty of M200 with more coming in August.

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    Default

    This is off topic, but both Frank and Andy's responsiveness and transparency on this forum absolutely sells machines. Other distributors should be taking note.

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    Default

    Check out this thread for some good insight on Brother machines.

    Brother Speedio s700x2 16k RPM with or without Big Plus?

    Multiple users bring up good points relating to the flexibility of the S series machines versus the M series machines near the end of the thread.

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    Quote Originally Posted by openyk View Post
    Looking to pull the trigger on a compact Brother Speedio this month.

    I'm part of a small non-profit engineering team (5+) doing full-size humanoid telepresence robotics; we need to control our leadtimes as we have tight schedule arcs. Plan is get small/medium 1-off parts done in-house and outsource large/high-qty parts.

    Space is limited because we haven't yet committed to the cost and geographic-cascade of a dedicated workshop. The garage door is standard-small; 2.4m (94in) wide by 2.1m (83in) high. The floor is tight, wall-to-wall; 2.7m (106in) wide by 5.8m (228in) deep. With a small space like this I have to consider the direction at which the forklift can carry the machine as that constrains install positions (even the forklift width can matter).

    The smallest Speedios (floor area) seem to be the S300X2 (1.08m X 2.46m) and M200X3 (1.28m X 3.87m), with the next size-step up adding S500X2 (1.56m X 2.2m), M300X3 (1.52m X 3.87m), F600X1 (1.8m X 2.47m).

    Workholding interface is a key factor. The SX2/FX1 (3-axis) machines have conventional tables (600mm X 400mm). The MX3 machines (5-axis) have a ISO702-4 #5 round-nose (140mm dia M200X3, 170mm dia M300X3) for the turning spindle.

    Question 1: do we prioritize the versatile machining+turning of the M200X3 and accept limited workholding (most of our parts are small) or prioritize the flexible workholding-area of the S300X2 and accept the base 3-axis machining?

    Question 2: do we have enough space for any of the 3 bigger machines?

    Options we like:

    Dual Contact (Big Plus) 16K rpm Spindle

    Manual Pulse Generator (MPG)

    Tool Setter/Breakage Detector

    Automatic Oil, Automatic Grease

    Top Cover (standard on MX3)

    Mist Collector

    Head Coolant Nozzles

    Chip Shower (required on M200X3)

    Higher-Capacity ATC (standard on MX3)

    Coolant Thru Spindle (CTS/TSC), Cyclone Filter (unsure)

    LED Light (unsure, how quality are their LEDs)

    A Axis Clamp (only on MX3) (unsure)

    High Accuracy Mode BII

    Spindle Airflow solenoid (unconfirmed avail) (can be added manually by installing to on-machine PLC)

    ---

    Reference Links:

    MX3: Specifications | M300X3/M200X3 | Machine Tools | Brother

    SX2: Specifications | S700X2/S500X2/S300X2 |Machine Tools|Brother

    FX1: Specifications | F600X1 | Machine Tools | Brother

    M200X3 workholding: https://youtu.be/bBbO5KbelQw?t=21

    M300X3 turning: https://youtu.be/P09hd8SRpWU?t=8
    .


    I don't normally insert myself into Speedio threads,

    Quote Originally Posted by openyk View Post
    Space is limited because we haven't yet committed to the cost and geographic-cascade of a dedicated workshop. The garage door is standard-small; 2.4m (94in) wide by 2.1m (83in) high.
    and,

    Quote Originally Posted by openyk View Post
    The smallest Speedios (floor area) seem to be the S300X2 (1.08m X 2.46m [x ? ]) and M200X3 (1.28m X 3.87m [x ?] ), with the next size-step up adding S500X2 (1.56m X 2.2m), M300X3 (1.52m X 3.87m), F600X1 (1.8m X 2.47m).
    You might want to doubke-check your elevations there. ^^^

    How are you fixed for "Juice"/ Three Phase for current draw you will need ?

    Not sure how fussy Speedios are for clean power source ?

    Interested in the ...

    Quote Originally Posted by openyk View Post
    Plan is get small/medium 1-off parts done in-house and outsource large/high-qty parts.
    "Outsource large/ high-qty parts " end of the model here.

    Sounds like an interesting scheme / project.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cameraman View Post

    Not sure how fussy Speedios are for clean power source ?
    They don't like 240V 3-phase like you would get straight out of a PhasePerfect or RPC. Typically you will need to buck down to 208-230V.

    Regards.

    Mike

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    Quote Originally Posted by mutiny View Post
    This is off topic, but both Frank and Andy's responsiveness and transparency on this forum absolutely sells machines. Other distributors should be taking note.
    2x off-topic. How would one sponsor a specific brand forum here? Sure seems like Brother should have their own forum, without sponsorship

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    Quote Originally Posted by mkd View Post
    2x off-topic. How would one sponsor a specific brand forum here? Sure seems like Brother should have their own forum, without sponsorship
    No fun in that.

    Andy

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2outof3 View Post
    No fun in that.

    Andy
    I know folks that have done [Product specific / brand specific separate user-forums ] and it's a real f*cking hassle... usually depends on how much a given company and related products need to control the message and be somewhat controlling in nature; it can turn into a pitchfork and torches scenario but ultimately those that are severely "Off message" can be banned. - It can be a very "neurotic" experience trying to manage such a forum -.

    Although a company like HAAS would do well to have their own additional (public)* [HAAS hosted] - "User-Forum" IMO could be more "Chill" and constructive better user feedback while stuff is in development.

    Sub forums (fora ?) [Like here - PM Forum] - generally don't get that many eyeballs - bad for selling stuff, but sometimes better for more discretely discussing brand or machine specific awkward problems or issues.


    __________________________________________________ ________________

    * As distinct from a closed "User Portal".

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    Quote Originally Posted by mkd View Post
    2x off-topic. How would one sponsor a specific brand forum here? Sure seems like Brother should have their own forum, without sponsorship
    So is Mikron / GF / Agie Charmilles(sp) gonna pony up for a sub forum and some banners ?

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    I think programming and setup on the M series machines would likely be a bottleneck in a prototype environment. The brother control is very fast and great in many ways, but when it comes to multi axis they lack some of the "creature comforts" that make quick setup easy. Also if you don't need the turning capability you're paying for a lot you're never going to use. I have two S700's with 4th axis on them and they are very fast to set up for prototyping as well as production. You could always add a two axis indexer if you need full five sided access. There are good plug and play options for the speedio machines. Also don't forget that the machine doesn't have to stay where the forklift sets it down, if you drop it on skates you can put it wherever you want in any orientation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cameraman View Post
    So is Mikron / GF / Agie Charmilles(sp) gonna pony up for a sub forum and some banners ?
    Doubt that the powers would sponsor anything out of the gate. Maybe if it was established and viewed as a positive force.
    With all the MFGer applications support hours expended every year, you'd think trolling, er, supporting, forums would be on the itinerary.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cameraman View Post
    .

    You might want to doubke-check your elevations there. ^^^

    How are you fixed for "Juice"/ Three Phase for current draw you will need ?

    Not sure how fussy Speedios are for clean power source ?
    Great checkpoints cameraman.

    Garage ceiling is over 3m so we should be ok (any MX3 or SX2 machine fits with ~0.5m to spare). That said we needed a garage door+opener replacement (opting for a side-wall-mount model, clearing up so much space compared to a higher-middle-mount) because the stock opener was mounted in the middle of the space at ~2.3m (~90in) and the stock door was not weatherstripped (allowing rodents inside).

    We've scheduled an electrical service upgrade for single phase 400A 240VAC (with 200A fallback depending on municipal approval) (with 50A/70A dedicated machine breaker) which should be enough when linked to a phase converter (<10m cable run from breaker) (machine is rated 9.5kVA so ~25A from converter).

    We've made sure to spec super-clean 220VAC 3-phase output for our phase-converter research but we don't have any buy-confident options on our shortlist yet. If anyone has a high-quality suggestion I'm all ears.

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    Quote Originally Posted by StirlingMachine View Post
    I think programming and setup on the M series machines would likely be a bottleneck in a prototype environment. The brother control is very fast and great in many ways, but when it comes to multi axis they lack some of the "creature comforts" that make quick setup easy. Also if you don't need the turning capability you're paying for a lot you're never going to use. I have two S700's with 4th axis on them and they are very fast to set up for prototyping as well as production. You could always add a two axis indexer if you need full five sided access. There are good plug and play options for the speedio machines. Also don't forget that the machine doesn't have to stay where the forklift sets it down, if you drop it on skates you can put it wherever you want in any orientation.
    We have a lot of rotary joints and sensors so fortunately(?) expecting to really use the turning function (hoping that ends up correct logic for this 1-machine commitment because otherwise the S machines look really solid!). Good idea with the skates too.

    If anyone has docs/files to aid 5-axis Speedio prototyping setup/CAM I'd appreciate it (we're leaning towards the M200X3 at this point). SVFeingold also mentioned tool center point control and dynamic work offsets; I'm not sure to what extent Speedio supports these for rapid setup of different parts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by openyk View Post
    We have a lot of rotary joints and sensors so fortunately(?) expecting to really use the turning function (hoping that ends up correct logic for this 1-machine commitment because otherwise the S machines look really solid!).
    Unless your parts require the high material removal rates available from the turning function, you are probably better off sticking with a standard machine. The MX machines seem really geared towards a very specific category or parts. You can likely mill most of the round geometry.

    A traditional table or 4th axis is really much more conducive to mounting things like multiple vises or fixture plates, that might put enough parts on the table that you can walk away. The MX machines are really for single part flow.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BROTHERFRANK View Post
    Small parts is a relative term. I wouldn't recommend the M300X3 for parts smaller than 4"x4" or 3x3 especially if you need to reach the centerline at A90. The M200 gets closer to the spindle face and Center Of Rotation in Z than the M300 by 50mm so shorter tools can be used. The M300 shifts the Z stroke up for larger parts.

    The items below are standard on the models with CTSI package stocked in North America. (All machines except S500 14 Tool 10k non CTSI)

    Dual Contact (Big Plus) 16K rpm (std M200X3, optional S300/500 16k)

    Automatic Grease

    Top Cover

    Chip Shower and 150L coolant tank

    Higher-Capacity ATC (22 standard on MX3, 21 on S300/500 CTSI)

    Coolant Thru Spindle (CTS/TSC) capable, need to add pump

    A Axis Clamp (standard M200 and 300 MX3)

    The S300 and S500 16k CTSI machines are currently in stock in North America. There is a limited qty of M200 with more coming in August.
    Thanks for the advice on part size. Within the M series that definitely steers us towards the M200X3. Also good to see all those useful options come standard for NA.

    Any possibility of getting the new CNC D00 controller as an option on the M200X3 or S300X2?

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    Quote Originally Posted by openyk View Post

    Any possibility of getting the new CNC D00 controller as an option on the M200X3 or S300X2?
    My experience tells me we won't see D00 control on anything except the new W1000Xd1 for about a year. It is not simply a keyboard and display change. Practically every electrical component, save some switches and solenoids, is new. Some companies, even though they build great products, could never be convicted of being great marketers!

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    Quote Originally Posted by openyk View Post
    Thanks for the advice on part size. Within the M series that definitely steers us towards the M200X3. Also good to see all those useful options come standard for NA.

    Any possibility of getting the new CNC D00 controller as an option on the M200X3 or S300X2?

    No plans for the new D00 control on anything besides the new W machine. The M200 sounds like a good fit.

    Andy

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    I urge OP to make a CAD model (or physical paper model) of likely parts, workholding, and the machines. (Folks on this thread and likely other sources will give you things like travels, space, etc.) Then make sure your parts actualy fit, with workholding you would actually use.

    You may well be able to visualize this in your head for 3-axis, for 5-axis it gets complicated in a hurry.

    And you have a CAD and CAM system you are happy with, and it is known to play well with Brother's controllers, right? (It's a very common machine so good posts should be readily available, but do check.)

    Fast prototype cycles are way more about getting the right design, getting the right machining plan (workholding, tooling, etc.), and generating correct code the first time, than they are about spindle speeds or tool change times.

    (I am NOT arguing against a Brother. Lots of people make lots of good parts on them, this is always a key sign.)

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    A large fraction of turned-style parts and features can be efficiently milled. It's only when you get into long aspect ratios or super tight circularity tolerances that it becomes infeasible. I've been doing a lot of Swiss style parts, even up to about a 15:1 aspect ratio (though efficiency is poor on those), on a 5 axis Haas mill.

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