Material issue - unable to complete project 1

Hi there -

I posted a few topics to the board, but beleive it is now a support issue.

I have tried several times now to cut a wrench, and experience the following issue. I will take you through it step by step.

  1. Load project (wrench). Aluminum is secured o waste board with 1/8th inch mounting tape.
  2. Select ‘Move Cutter’
  3. Select ‘Click to begin homing’
  4. CNC proceeds to ‘Home’
  5. Select ‘Click to Measure tool’
  6. CNC proceeds to move left and right on the crib, then press the cutter nib to the touchstone.
  7. I set the zero by jogging through Z± and the XY parameters. I set the cutter nib to touch the aluminum on the left corner closest to me. I make sure a eice of paper just barely passes through underneath. If I move the z any closer to the material, it cuts into the aluminum prior to positioning itself and spoils the cut.
  8. I set zero, and zero all ‘Set work coordinates’
  9. press done
    10… quit jog
  10. select ‘begin project’
  11. Error message: ‘Machine parameters invalid’ displays, click through
  12. message: “Insert tool #102 and click her eot continue” (1/8 Inch square mill) - - - a #102 Square .125" is already in the nib.
  13. Click this message forward.
  14. Error message: ‘Machine parameters invalid’ displays, I am tryping this message, and the machine keeps moving. Before I can click through the message, the CNC bit drills down intot he aluminum and catches. It is unable to move. I press the emergency stop.

THis is my typical experience.

I have gotten cuts through the material, but the project ends before the cut is half way through the material.

Do you have an idea of my error?


I think I figured out my problem. I was not wrenching the bit holder tight enough, and my bits were dropping. Does the CNC know when the bit is loose? Perhaps that is why I got the ‘Machine parameters invalid’ error message twice?,

I believe getting a wrench form Home Depot will resolve the issue of the bit not cutting through the aluminum in my first project.

Perhaps Carbide 3D may want to rethink the first project? It is an awesome idea to print out one of the tools you will use - but the misfortune is that you really need this tool prior to even starting the first project. I cannot print the wrench without the wrench . . .

Hi Bunsella

I had the same issue. You have to tighten the collet up quite tight. I wish there was a torque setting specified because I’m scared of the cross threading the ER collet holder. Also, I think that this material supplied is quite prone to digging in since it is a thin skin of aluminium on two sides of plastic that sort of forms the start of a nut quite easy. Sorry for really bad explaination but I think that that is what is happening. As for the machine parameters invalid issue I really hoped that they would have released a software update for that by now… I sent in my log window contents in December and there has still been no update to my knowledge.

I have milled some really nice things despite the problems though. I just think that for aluminium the machine is just not really rigid enough. Even with derilin you really have to take it slow.

There is a lot of deflection in the small linear rod under quite tiny load. I set up a DDI and without securing the machine (and I guess it might only weigh about 10kg) I was able to move the z axis around +/-0.2 mm very easily. I’m sure the cutting forces for aluminium are much higher and when it is the gt2 belts deflecting as well as the linear rods it will be much more serious. Hence for any accuracy at all best to stick to materials that are not too hard and low feed rates and depth of cut especially for finishing passes. I’m not hating on the machine, I still love it, just think that milling aluminium or the composite material of aluminium and plastic supplied with the machine it’s really not suited.