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For Small Scale Production Is It Worth It?

Discussion in 'A BEGINNER'S FORUM (Learn How To Machine Here!)' started by eddygara, Dec 26, 2016.

  1. eddygara

    eddygara United States Iron Registered Member

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    Im a jumping into the venture of small scale carbon bike fabrication. Immediately I realized the cost of tooling and supplies was going to be a very large investment. Too cut cost down a bit, I invested some one in a couple of 3d printers to produce model, in which to cast for negative molds.

    Right now im stuck on wither its a good idea to invest in a lathe and milling machine. So that I wouldn't have to depend on a outside source for tooling. I need a various plug fittings, made for press fitting on frame im making. Plugs no bigger then a 4-5in diameter, and 4-5in height made from aluminum.

    Now would it make sense too just invest in these tools for my self? Or too just source the work out? I've been quoted up $500 for a group of 5 plugs, but there is the chance i might need more, or different sizes.

    Because of the nature of the work ill be doing this is the machine i was looking into. I choose this model for its variable speed, making work a little easier for me. And the work envelope looks to be prefect for what i will be doing.

    I was very intrested in grizzly G0752

    Do you think it would suffice? Or should i just be looking else where?
     

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  2. LucknowKen

    LucknowKen Active Member Active Member

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    The Grizzly G0752 has a 5" 3 jaw and a 6" four jaw chuck.
    Will that be big enough to turn a plug 4-5in diameter, and 4-5in height?
     
  3. Big Bore Builder

    Big Bore Builder United States Active Member Active Member

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    No. Too small and not enough horsepower.

    Yea, it could be done at the expense of a lot of time and frustration if the chucks are large enough to chuck up your raw stock.

    You will appreciate a 14 x 40 or so sized lathe.

    Depending on how many parts to machine, you likely will be better off finding a machine shop to make the plugs: Your $500 quote is not far off if the parts are simple cylindrical plugs turned and faced with no complex machining or milling machine work.. Post a drawing of what you want to machine and you will receiver more concise answers.

    Below is my 14x40 machining motorcycle parts.

    DSCN5306.jpg

    upload_2016-12-26_19-11-48.png
     

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    Last edited: Dec 26, 2016
  4. entityunknown

    entityunknown United States Active Member Active Member

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    You might want to search carbon fiber and machining. It's generally a nightmare and you need special tools, not necessarily more horse power. Water jets was a good proposed solution here, but a water jet lathe????

    Bikes are all cylindrical parts so you're best off with a lathe for a machine vs. a mill. You don't need a very large one either, just one that can hold the longest lengths of tubes and probably a few more inches since you have to compensate for chucks, tools, and tail stock. I think 30" length would probably be your ball park but I don't know bicycle frames.

    You'll have to consider your 3d printed molds having lines in them since I'm sure you don't want that in your finished product so you'll have to compensate for material removal dimensions. You can print in CF BTW.

    Generally carbon fiber is a wrap when human lives/structural integrity are involved. Usually you use Ti or Al and wrap it with the CF. CF is stiff by itself but it's still flexible so I'd imagine you'd have some amazing shock absorption but I'd also imagine the bike would flex so much that the mechanical parts would fall apart.

    Not knocking your idea, just some things to consider and if you have then rock on! Let the engineering continue :)

    As for Grizzly, I'm happy with my Grizzly lathe :) Happy enough that I'm about to buy a very big mill and most of my tooling from them. That was based on all my research and now my own personal experience with a G8688.
     
  5. 4gsr

    4gsr Global Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Some of the products I design involves composite materials that are mandrel wrapped. The material is machined on standard CNC lathes with PDC tooling. The shavings spit out just like stringy shaving fro cutting plastics, just more abrasive. They are cut dry. They run the machines on a negative air system so the fumes from the composite are filtered and vented to atmosphere. The shavings are conveyed out of the machine just like metal shavings into dumpsters and disposed of. Not something for the home shop in my opinion. Ken
     

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