How to index a longer board

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Keystone Chuck
Posts: 36
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 12:02 pm
Location: Pennsylvania USA

How to index a longer board

Postby Keystone Chuck » Tue Aug 25, 2015 3:25 pm

Looking to make a longer sign than my table allows. I think I understand the tileing part in Vetrics software but how does one index the board and the table. Is it a simple as making a mark where I start the board (X,Y touchoff) on the table and then bring the board to the mark where the next tile would start?

Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 2:39 pm

Re: How to index a longer board

Postby DustyGeek » Wed Aug 26, 2015 11:03 am

I think Tiling may not necessarily be what you want to use. To me, Tiling is cutting the same part over and over (like placing Tile on a floor).

I've done this before few times on my X90. Not knowing any better (and still don't) here is the process I used:

  1. Direct the machine drill alignment holes down through the stock and maybe 1/4" into the table, as far apart as possible (farther apart will give you better alignment).
  2. Have the machine drill index holes for the next step. They should be the same distance apart as the alignment holes, and however far away from the alignment holes as the distance you want to step the stock down.
  3. Cut the first portion of the job
  4. Release the stock and align the index holes with the alignment holes you made in the first step. I used 1/4 holes and the shaft end of some old 1/4" shank router bits.
  5. Reclamp and cut second portion
  6. Repeat 2-5 as many times as necessary.

How your software handles this can vary wildly. I know at the time I was testing CamBam, I made four 1/4" circles centered on 0/0, 16/0, 0/16, 16/16. I drew a line at Y=16 across the cutting area and cut everything intersecting it and then removed the cutting line. For the first portion/part, I set the origin for 0/0, selected the four circles and did a peck drill, then selected everything in the first section and did an outer profile. I then added a second part with the Machine origin for the part to X=0,Y=16, then selected all of the objects in the second section and made those an outer profile as well.

I hope that's clearer than mud. Maybe there's an easier way, but the couple of times I needed to do this, it was a one-off so I just did what I knew would work.

Keystone Chuck
Posts: 36
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 12:02 pm
Location: Pennsylvania USA

Re: How to index a longer board

Postby Keystone Chuck » Thu Aug 27, 2015 8:50 am

I appreciate the advice but I believe I have the "tiling" part of the software correct. I watched the video's from Vetrics and its what I'm trying to accomplish. I'm very new to the CNC thing but what I understood the multi-part placement was called nesting. Did not watch videos on that yet, really don't do production work with my machine just signs at the moment. Regardless of the word/term, what I was seeking is the procedure to route something longer than bed without putting additional holes and/or pegs in the board. My customer has a finished board that they want me to V Carve into it. It is not double sided with the wording on both sided but it is going to be seen from both sides (hanging in the air on chains) so having little holes on the back for the indexing really wouldn't be nice to look at. Going to try and do just a mark on the board and table on some scrap and see what that gives me.
Posts: 10
Joined: Sun Aug 23, 2015 7:10 pm

Re: How to index a longer board

Postby » Thu Aug 27, 2015 10:37 pm

Keystone Chuck,
You are correct Using Vcarve to make pieces longer (or wider) than your bed. I use this feature to make 38 inch rotor blades as the cutting length of my bed is 17.4 inch max.

My process is:
Vcarve Pro
Set working area to 3 x 41
Load drawing 2.5 x 40
Select pocket with depth of .030 label pocket40 -- calculate
Select tile manager
Check tile toolpaths, feed thru in Y
enter height. Mine is 14"
click update tiles
Click Save toolpaths. ( 3 will be saved T1_pocket40,T2_pocket40,T3_pocket40

Machine setup
1/ I remove lower front and and back of my Plexiglas housing to allow for length
2/ since my 17" spoil board has been previously surfaced I have a straight edge.
3/ I place my stock 2.75 x 40 spaced 1.0 from straight edge with 2ea 12" rules. Secure and remove the rules.
4/ I send my tool to starting point and save x=0, y=0. ( I make a small reference hole in the spoil board here)
5/ load T1_pocket40 file
6/ apply profile (USB Mk3 built in feature)
7/ move to center of stock -- measure tool length
8/ move to x=0, y=0
9/ commence to cut T1. (14 inches)
10/ Re-install the rules and slide the stock out until the reference hole is adjacent to the beginning of next cut. Remove the rules
11/ load T2_pocket40 file
12/ apply profile (USB Mk3 built in feature)
11/ Commence to cut T2. (14 inches)
12/ repeat step 10.
13/ load T3_pocket40 file
14/ apply profile (USB Mk3 built in feature)
13/ commence to cut T3 (remaining 12 inches)

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