The Calling of the CNC Machine

Someone mentioned 3D printers and CNC machines to me in June. I laughed and basically said if I could freeze time I could dive right in. This was SUPPOSED to be the summer where I focused on Embedded C programming and got really hand at Atmel Studio 7. Then I was assigned the task of grinding out PCB boards on industrial machines that weren’t designed for it. It was a fun endeavor and got to hang out with machinists. I suspect I would like ALL machinists. They cuss better than I and that’s saying a lot.

After getting a taste for the big boy CNC machines, I had to have one. There was no choice. The money would have to be found. A wanted a CNC machine that would handle my PCB prototyping requirements (as the current iteration time for cranking out PCBs is just too darn long), but I wanted to do all the cutey wootsy carvy warvy stuff, too. I make stuff. There was a part of me that wondered if I was just being a moron or if I’d actually use the thing. After creating one thing with it, I suspect I’ll be using this nearly every day when I get out of school. It’s too useful.

So what did I get? I built a Millright Carve King. I’ll probably do a full rant on the whole CNC kit building process. I’m glad I did it, but it came at costs (beyond the price tag). In retrospect, the only thing I’d do differently was found a way to use 1/4″ bits. The 1/8″ bits are just a hair limiting.

I’m not the most mechanically-gifted person. I’ve encountered dozens of people that have barely harnessed the power of the alphabet absolutely destroy me with a couple of open-ended wrenches. But, I fought it off and ultimately won. Not bad for a dinkus computer scumbag.

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