Shapeoko 3 XL extra weight on gantry

Recently I started using an electric duster I had laying around to keep chips clear while cutting aluminum but it’s not very convenient to hold around all the time… My plan has been to 3D print an adapter and rig up some pneumatic tubing to direct the air blast but the longer the tubing is, the weaker the blast is. If the gantry could support the extra 2.3 or so pounds of the electric duster I could minimize the tubing length by directly putting it on the z-axis. I’m assuming this wouldn’t work, but sometimes things are more viable than you would think, and it would certainly be convenient—if I can find a good way to mount the duster, that is.

I suppose you would attach it to the Z axis. The HDZ could surely support that. The Z-Plus is not recommended for heavier spindles. So depending on what Z axis you have would be the deciding factor. Merry Christmas

Sounds like it’s probably a no-go with my default z axis. Can’t say I’m all that surprised.

Merry Christmas to you too!

Get yourself a small aircompressor, and this: Adding Air Blast to a CNC Router - YouTube

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I also advise compressed air and an air blast setup. Weighs a lot less, more pressure, adjustable, and directed at the area your needing to clear chips from.

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unfortunately it’s just a little too expensive for me to justify when the duster clears chips just fine (it’s impressively powerful). Later down the road I might suck it up and shell out for a proper air blast.

You could consider mounting to the back of the X rail, the aluminium is 5mm thick which is quite enough to drill and tap M5 or M6 to hold a bracket for your duster with tubing from there to the moving Z carriage? 2.3 lbs is not a lot of mass for the gantry and hung on the back it would be counterbalanced by the weight of the Z axis.


that’s a nice idea—I’ll probably take a look at the easiest way I could get that done some time soon. Do you think the extra weight could have any performance impact at all?

I’ve got quite a bit more than an extra 2.3lbs dragging around on my machine and I seem to be getting away with it.

I’ve not had to turn down the speeds or accelerations on this machine, worst case you might need to reduce your Y acceleration a little but I’ve got away with it.


edit - It’s worth making sure that the primary mass is rigidly mounted and can’t wobble around as the X rail moves, otherwise you might get some odd artifacts in the cut on Y direction changes.


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