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  • June Project of the Month (Click "x" at right to dismiss)
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3D printed cross feed nut!

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Ststephen7

Active Member
Active Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2013
Messages
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#1
OK… here it is… my new cross feed nut arrived today! It looks an exact match for the original, other than the hole in the original is off center (as you can see in one of the pictures). If I had purchased an Atlas or South Bend I probably would have simply purchased one on ebay or something. And... Sheldon parts are not that easy to come by.

I told Dennis at FDM prints (FDMprints@gmail.com) that I had almost a half turn of backlash. I sent along the screw so he could make the nut fit as well as possible. The screw, of course, has the most wear in the center, so the new nut is pretty tight at the ends, and perfect in the middle of the screw. He also made a 3D printed change gear to replace a stripped formica/fiber gear.

2 things... I have no affiliation with Dennis or his company (I found him selling 3D printed gears on ebay). In my limited experience I feel he did a great job with both the gear and the nut; he is very easy to work with, very affordable, and relatively quick turnaround. And... He would not tell me what the gear or nut is made from, so... I cannot help you there.

My backlash is now less than 0.003… which I think is perfect.

Once I get some time under my belt perhaps I’ll attempt to make myself a new cross feed screw.

I'm planning to post this in several forums/categories, as I think a lot of people might be interested in hearing about a 3D printed cross feed nut. It that is not OK either delete them, or ask me to, and I will oblige.

Steve

IMG_3359.JPG IMG_3355.JPG
 

magicniner

Brass
Registered Member
Joined
Oct 21, 2017
Messages
398
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356
#2
I'd guess Nylon or Delrin, I print both on my Prusa I3 Clone and both would be good for the application.
 

middle.road

Actively Learning...
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Apr 28, 2014
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#3
Delrin would be perfect for this type of application.
 

benmychree

John York
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Jun 7, 2013
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#4
Bah, humbug! The only proper material for a cross feed nut is bronze or cast iron, and they are not at all hard to make by single point threading.
 

middle.road

Actively Learning...
H-M Supporter-Premium Member
Joined
Apr 28, 2014
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#5
Bah, humbug! The only proper material for a cross feed nut is bronze or cast iron, and they are not at all hard to make by single point threading.
Ah come on - it's the 21st century, embrace the technology! :big grin:
 

Ststephen7

Active Member
Active Member
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Oct 8, 2013
Messages
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#6
I imagine that once I feel more confident I will make myself another nut of bronze (if only as a project). And having never used a lathe before, and feeling like I needed a more reasonable amount of backlash to even use this thing, I got myself a working nut. I don't have a mill (yet), so making a nut is more involved than simply turning some threads...
 

woodchucker

Titanium
Former Member
Joined
Nov 25, 2015
Messages
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1,026
#10
mmmm, how long do you think it ill hold up for?
A good use of a 3d printer might be to make a taper wiper... to clean mt and r8 tapers
nuts, of pl1, I just don't think it will hold up.
 

magicniner

Brass
Registered Member
Joined
Oct 21, 2017
Messages
398
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356
#11
There's nothing wrong with polymer threads, in applications like this they are very good.
A more rigid housing for the thread is a good idea, with the polymer just taking the feed load and not that of the mounting.
Those who have not yet 3D printed any parts themselves, or used any well printed parts, are unfortunately not qualified to judge this ;-)
 

Rooster

H-M Supporter - Premium Member
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Apr 4, 2017
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#12
My problem with plastic is just that. It's plastic, people used to say nasty things about Chinese products with plastic. Now with 3-D printers available, everyone can produce cheap parts at will and add to the worlds pollution woes.
I have made a couple of cross feed nuts for my Atlas 618 out of brass, i bought a single pass acme tap and it could not be easier.
 

Ststephen7

Active Member
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Oct 8, 2013
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#14
My problem with plastic is just that. It's plastic, people used to say nasty things about Chinese products with plastic. Now with 3-D printers available, everyone can produce cheap parts at will and add to the worlds pollution woes.
I have made a couple of cross feed nuts for my Atlas 618 out of brass, i bought a single pass acme tap and it could not be easier.

Not quite as simple for me, as I would need to mill (or find someone to do it for me) part of the 'nut'. Although, I guess with care and patience I could use files and get it where I needed it.

And... Sheldon used a LH 1/2 8tpi thread, instead of the 1/2 10 like many others. So... finding the right tap is more difficult. There is one on ebay, however it states it is "Acme modified square thread"... is this just an acme thread? Or is it yet another variation of thread?

https://www.ebay.com/i/302385680816?chn=ps&dispItem=1
 

Ststephen7

Active Member
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Joined
Oct 8, 2013
Messages
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#15
mmmm, how long do you think it ill hold up for?
A good use of a 3d printer might be to make a taper wiper... to clean mt and r8 tapers
nuts, of pl1, I just don't think it will hold up.
It may not, and for the moment I have my lathe up and running. Now, once I have some time on the lathe, I can make a brass/bronze/cast one for myself.
 

petertha

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Jan 15, 2016
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#16
I thought maybe printing a bronze leadscrew nut through Shapeways might be the best of both worlds. I didn't upload a cad file to check price, but just eyeballing equivalent weight items, it would be pretty spendy. Its not 'real' bronze as in alloy stock, its some kind of sintered process, but might be acceptable. I've heard specialty taps for larger leadscrew pitches can be spendy though too. So ya, if a person has the ability to thread his own from barstock, probably the best option, but only if the original nut is still serviceable in the lathe. The old chicken & egg thing! LOL

https://www.shapeways.com/marketplace?type=product&q=bronze&facet[materialGroupId]=7
 
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