Thread Milling (in Metal) on the Shapeoko (3)

(Graham Gerhardt) #41

I did a bit of research and ended up importing it directly from the manufacturer. One has to be a tad careful - there are a lot of spindle manufacturers, but only a handful that really know what they are doing, or care much about the product.

Here is a link to their store on Aliexpress - it’s not exactly the same model that I bought:

The company that owns Aliexpress has the same thing but on a grander scale (called Taobao or Tmall) - and is entirely in Chinese. On Tmall, the Zhenyu company’s shop is much more extensive - here is the link to my exact unit:

To look at Tmall links - I use Chrome, and turn on auto-translate to help make sense of it all.

If interested, its easy to communicate with the sales department at Zhenyu in english - and I just arranged them to send me the unit directly from China, had it in a couple of days.

I have no connection to this company - just a happy customer.

Re the software question: I use Estlcam to generate my threading G-code (and a lot of other stuff). It’s cheapish at $59 USD. Can’t recommend it highly enough!!

Check out his trochoidal milling video:

Or his thread milling video:

I really like how I can chamfer using the same plain endmill after I do a helical drilling op.

Again, no connection to Estlcam, but I really recommend it.

(Jonathan Anderson) #42

Wow, cool, thanks for the spindle recommendation. I will keep that handy for when I want to buy one. You need to buy the spindle, frequency converter, and more, right? What was your whole bundle you bought? I wanted to know where you got your threadmills too.

(Graham Gerhardt) #43

Yes I bought everything I needed from Zhenyu - spindle motor, variable frequency drive, water pump, tubing, ER20 collets and nuts, dust collection head, and probably other things I’ve forgotten!

The thread mills - I sourced them from China as well - from this place:

That shop has a bunch of thread mills - that link above is for those designed to cut Aluminium. They have others for steel. Mine is made from tungsten carbide - not sure what would happen to it if you tried it on steel.

I can confirm that if the cutter runs into a clamp or other obstruction in the way - they promptly snap in half and may result in colourful language being said.

(Vince) #44

@RichCournoyer you sir, I owe a drink to. Wouldn’t have been able to finish these parts without copying your tap hack!

Using your method, turned a 1/4-28 into a single flute threadmill and successfully completed 3/8-32 without issues. Mine is far, faaarr uglier but function over form right.

(Richard Cournoyer) #45

I will look forward to that drink…and I am glad that my shared knowledge was helpful!