3D Machining Aluminum

I saw an Aluminum test file on Instagrm and it looked like a nice challenge for the Nomad, so I machined a sample, and wanted to share the results and settings used to machine a 3d file into 6061.

Here are the MeshCAM toolpath settings and some pointers to hopefully save you some time and cutters.
This was cut dry with the .125" ball for the roughing pass and .0625" ball for the finishing and pencil passes.
Run time was around 5 hours.
3D 6061 ALuminum 125 063.tps (2.1 KB)

On the left is a Roughing pass only.
The sample on the right also has the parallel finish and pencil pass and I would recommend setting up your job like this if possible.

Machining in a pocket (Left) requires removing chips during the job to avoid regrind which will clog the flutes of the cutter.

The stock aluminum I started with was 1/2" thick and 1.75" inches wide.

Left side of the face was buffed quickly on a 3M wheel, it removed the toolmarks but also some of the texture on the eyebrow.



Oh man, one of these days!!!

@ApolloCrowe: Am I correct in thinking that your fixture method between the workpiece and the base plate is wax?

Yes, I wanted to locate the workpiece clear of the clamps, so a base plate was used with the blue wax to bond the parts.

I squared the workpiece to the base plate, and used some low profile hardware to square the baseplate to the threaded table.

Clamp files are here;