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  1. #1
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    Default new shop layout help

    Looking for advice on shop layout options.
    I'm a small one man shop that is inside my family's warehouse. Looking for advice on how to lay out the machine and maximize space. Room is 30x20.
    I'll have a 2 machines 1)VF2SSYT 2)Chinese mill a desk, 2 tool boxes (red rectangles in model), Possible 55 gallon drum (coolant I'll keep in the corner), wire shelf (size of a book shelf) of prep material and a 6ft work bench.

    Option 1 and Option 2 is really what I'm thinking. As it would give me enough room to load/unload 4th axis from the front or side. Will also allow me to run longer stock out the window, if ever I need to. Small chance but never know what will walk in the door.


    Option 1
    12312.jpg

    Option 2
    1.jpg

    Option 3
    3.jpg

    Option 4
    2.jpg
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails air-compressor.jpg  

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    Why does option 2 have the machine so far from the back wall? I assume so you can stick really long 4th axis stuff through the big door? We do occasionally run a job machining the end of a 3' tube but I'd say the likelihood of a very long tube 4th axis job is not so high and you should push the machine back until the back of the electrical enclosure is 36" from the wall which I believe is the limit for those machines. I modeled exactly this for either a VF-2 or VF-3 and we decided square to the wall was going to be best. See me recent New Machine Day thread when we installed our VM-3 for pics. So I think your option 2 is good but move the machine back. Another great thing in small shops is rolling tables with heavy casters. You could have a big table that lives in front of the big door and you move it out of the way occasionally, for example.

  3. #3
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    Back that mill cabinet up to a wall! 30" is all you need.
    Also, make sure you have plenty of room to walk around your chip barrel under the machines chute.
    Trust me, you will hate life if your chip barrel is shoved up against a wall.

    If it were me? I would probably orient as option-2. But only 30" from that wall behind it, and centered side/side.

    But, option-1 probably makes the most sense. Just tucked a lot farther back.

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    Most tool builders only require 30" or so from a wall.

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    The reason why the machine sticks out is to keep it on one concrete square. There’s a control joint that’s stocks out of that corner 28”. Hard to see in the picture

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    Quote Originally Posted by Djstorm100 View Post
    The reason why the machine sticks out is to keep it on one concrete square. There’s a control joint that’s stocks out of that corner 28”. Hard to see in the picture
    I get that. But, it is not as big of a deal as some people make it out to be. Especially with a pretty light machine (VF2 is under 9k I believe) that has 6 pads.
    Just my opinion: no way I would compromise that much space over a control-joint. Unless there was visible evidence the concrete is moving.
    If there are lots of cracks other than the control-joint? Or one side of the joint is heaved or sunken? Yea, it would be a concern.
    But, if the joint is still pretty well flush? And, the concrete is in good shape? Span a joint, no big deal.

    Do you know anything about the concrete? How thick?
    If you don't know, it might be a good idea to drill a small hole in an inconspicuous area near where you want to set the machine.
    This will allow you to determine how thick the concrete is to get a better idea of whether or not you could confidently span a joint.
    And, if you really plan well, you could open the hole up after, and sink a ground rod for your machine there. Or, just fill with epoxy.

    Don't assume, even if you have the building plans, that the concrete is as thick as it is supposed to be.
    More than once I have proven that concrete that was supposed to be a certain thickness was way too thin! (concrete guys hate me, I watch them like a hawk)

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    I have a similar sized shop and same machines and couldn't put the Haas 30" from the wall because I already was on 2 pads and ceiling height situation. It worked out better in the end because I found a little extra space from the wall can allow the space behind the machine to also be more useful. I was able to put some work benches and shelving for packing without being completely cramped and the area stays clean out of general work area. 30" may just make the space behind the machine useless but 48" for example may let you much more with the space overall. Just a thought and everyone's got a different preference. I think being on more than one concrete pad is more of an issue if you have forklifts or other heavy equipment driving around the machines because if they drive on the corner of the pad it will move the pad.I have had no issues or cracking on my machine. VF-2SSYT is only about 8500 lbs

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    Quote Originally Posted by Djstorm100 View Post
    The reason why the machine sticks out is to keep it on one concrete square. There’s a control joint that’s stocks out of that corner 28”. Hard to see in the picture
    Your machine isn't heavy enough to worry about that. Unless your concrete is 1/2" thick

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    It's largely due to this being my first "real" machine.

    My family's business is in the concrete industry (fabricate rebar and sell commercial building supplies). Concrete is 8" thick in the center with double layer wire.

    I did lay out the foot print today. From the end to end of the machine is 121", including the chute. I included another 3 foot, so 157" from the wall.

    I do kinda like the extra space toward the back, which is 5 foot of clearance. Only concern I have is how it's going to be putting the 4th through the front vs the side.

    img_1564.jpg




    img_1562.jpg

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    I like #1. Make the rest of your stuff mobile. Either put wheels on it, or make it movable with a small pallet jack. For example you can put wheeled racks up against the back of your machine and easily move them out of the way when you need to open the cabinets for service. Wheeled benches get put where they are needed as the work and machine use changes. Eventually the Tetris practice slows down and the items find homes where they are used the most.
    FWIW have a Prototrak mill that lives on 3 1/2" round bars so it can be slid around when necessary. All cut material and WIP is on tall rolling carts that double as workbenches.

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    You are thinking about details you should not until you have work to fill the workspace.
    Easy to rearrange the furniture in the living room.
    Do any that feels good now, you will want to change it later.
    I so like flexible, work changes and the machines and workbenches move to eliminate steps taken.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CarbideBob View Post
    You are thinking about details you should not until you have work to fill the workspace.
    Easy to rearrange the furniture in the living room.
    Do any
    I do have the work. I don't have the means of moving my machine around once set.

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    Whenever we have a new machine coming in we will build a frame with strips of plywood screwed together to simulate the footprint. Just like you’re doing with tape but easier to push around the room to see what feels good. Good luck!

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    A VF2 on 8"? You need not be fretting over spanning control joints.

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    I cannot tell from your notes, and don't know from experience with the VF2 - but DO be SURE that...

    1. You can install, and later uninstall, the coolant tank (and the conveyer if it's a separate unit.) Because every so often (rare but never) you need to extract them to clean them out, or fix something, etc.

    2. Make sure you can get pallet of some kind on a pallet jack with a chip bin in and out under the chip shute. Chip bins have a sneaky habit of getting super heavy when you are not looking.

    Same for the chinese machine as for the Haas....

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    So it's looking like with the way I need to position my mill in my shop to provide the max floor space, I would have to go through the front. I know can I hack down my engine hoist for ground clearance, I don't mind it being some what comber some to install/remove the 4th but do not want it to be a real pain in the butt.

    Option 1 lay out allows me the most ease of access for the chip bin and coolant tank and also the most floor space. However I can't load the 4th through the side window. The right side of the machine to the wall is 40-45" clearance roughly. From the left side of the enclosure to the left side of the shop is 85". From front panel of the Haas to the front panel of my other machine is 185". 3 foot more than Option 2 (150-154")


    Option 2 Allows more room to install and remove the 4th axis from the side window, however I still think there is probably not enough clearance. From the rear wall to the enclosure left panel is 48", away and I don't think this will grant easy access to the coolant tank from that side of the machine.

    I know I'm over thinking this to a extent but I want to get this right the first time.
    option-3.jpgoption-2.jpgoption-1.jpg


    However, then it dawned on me. What about Option 3

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    What if you rotate it 45 degrees and put the computer access in the corner? The chip outlet can be turned to eject out the front of the machine. I remove the skirts from the coolant pan side of the machines to make access easier.

    I would like the chip auger to push the chips out of the front of my machines

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    Man, you sure don't put much priority on maximizing the available space.

    How far from the rear of the machine to the wall in opt.2? (I have done the storage behind a machine thing. It sucks)

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    Quote Originally Posted by wheelieking71 View Post
    Man, you sure don't put much priority on maximizing the available space.

    How far from the rear of the machine to the wall in opt.2? (I have done the storage behind a machine thing. It sucks)
    Haha I was just going to suggest that behind the machine isn't necessarily 'wasted' as you can roll carts behind there when not in use. I wouldn't want to work back there, but rolling a cart with semi-finished parts, or raw material is fine. 5 gallon buckets of coolant, brooms, etc all are fine parked behind a machine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike1974 View Post
    Haha I was just going to suggest that behind the machine isn't necessarily 'wasted' as you can roll carts behind there when not in use. I wouldn't want to work back there, but rolling a cart with semi-finished parts, or raw material is fine. 5 gallon buckets of coolant, brooms, etc all are fine parked behind a machine.
    True, stuff on wheels or stuff you don't mind getting dirty. It is the perfect place to store/mix coolant! That always makes a mess anyways.
    But, anything you would like to remain semi-clean? That is the worst place to put it.
    Even with a good mist collector on the machine, it will still get covered in coolant mist over time.
    Not to mention chips. They get everywhere around a VMC. I'm all for using that space to store stuff. But, not on permanent shelves.

    I have a work-station up against the back wall between two mills right now out of necessity (no where else to put it that is not in the way).
    I absolutely HATE it there. Chips everywhere. Hit a crack just wrong with coolant hosing a machine out? Work station gets a coolant bath. It sucks.

    I need to rearrange my whole shop real bad!


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