Tag: shapeoko

CNC Tips and Tricks – Cutting Extruded Polystyrene Sheets

So in this episode we are going to look at machining sheets of extruded polystyrene sheets we bought a  couple years back.  This was very cheap verses that of acrylic, however machining is a bit harder as the plastic wants to melt rather than cut.  So what we did was:

1. Use a 1/8″ 2 flute end mill (amzn.to/1LMWEJy)

2. Kicked the speed up to 100 Inches per minute

3. Slowed the spindle down to only 1/3 speed using a speed controller(amzn.to/1GUViXB)


A. Polystyrene

 is a synthetic aromatic polymer made from the monomer styrene. Polystyrene can be solid or foamed. General purpose polystyrene is clear, hard, and rather brittle. It is an inexpensive resin per unit weight. Polystyrene is one of the most widely used plastics, the scale of its production being several billion kilograms per year. Polystyrene can be naturally transparent, but can be colored with colorants.

As a thermoplastic polymer, polystyrene is in a solid (glassy) state at room temperature but flows if heated above about 100 °C, its glass transition temperature. It becomes rigid again when cooled. This temperature behavior is exploited for extrusion, and also for molding and vacuum forming, since it can be cast into molds with fine detail.

B. Polystyrene features

  •  Excellent light transmittance.
  •  High mechanical strength.
  •  Weather proof
  •  Non-toxic and chemical resistant.
  •  Easily be processed

C. Polystyrene applications

  •  Advertisement: blow molding board, CNC engraving materials, Laser engraving materials, sign board,  light box,  window, logo and mark, etc.
  •  Furniture: office furniture, cabinet, window, etc.
  •  Finishing Material: decorative sheets, storage racks, room segments, etc.

VenTech VTSPEED Variable Dial Router Fan Speed Controller for Duct and Inline Fans

by VenTech [VenTech]
Rank/Rating: 81324/-
Price: $17.99

QU-BD TwoUp Bed Leveling Spring Holders

So we have been working on the QU-BD TwoUP 3D DIY printer again and one of the thing which we made where retaining cups for the bed springs.  We where having issues with the prints shifting as there was play in the (few thousands of an inch) and when the printer did infills the alignment would jump as the bed shift (assume it slid on the springs).  With any luck this will reduce the issue.  Also keep eye out for a video on this too.

XYZprinting da 3D Printer

by XYZprinting [XYZprinting,Inc]
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Using a Laser to Recycle a Cereal Box Into a Stencil!

In this episode we will use our CNC mounted 2 Watt Laser Diode cutter to recycle a stencil out of an old cereal box! I have this is a great tool for recycle and reuse of things that would normally end up in the trash.  How use care when cutting due to both fumes (which could be toxic) and reflections from shinny surfaces so use care when cutting something new having proper ventilation as wearing the correct safety glasses for your laser!

Also if you want to try this yourself, check out the link below for a pre-built unit: 

1500mW Desktop DIY Laser Engraver Engraving Machine Picture CNC Printer

by Mega Save [Mega Save]
Rank/Rating: 2090282/-
Price: -

2 Watt Laser Cutter and Engraver Project Part 5 – Building the X Gantry!

In this episode we will add the X Gantry we designed for the 2 watt laser cutter and engraver build project.  As the build mature we will place all of the additional STLs up on Thingiverse as well build up an additional BOM (Bill of Materials) for the project too!  So stay turned and see how the build turns out!  Also if your interested in jump starting your build of a similar device, check out the link below!

1500mW Desktop DIY Laser Engraver Engraving Machine Picture CNC Printer

by Mega Save [Mega Save]
Rank/Rating: 2090282/-
Price: -

Autodesk 123D Make Laser Cutting Rocket Model on CNC


In this episode we will show you how take the Rocket model from Autodesk 123D Make and move it into Vectric Cut2D, convert it to gcode and cut it out on the laser.  Again remember safety first when ever using a laser!

If your interested in getting into laser cutting, check out some of the pre-built models like this one which can get you going quickly and easily:

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Probotix Fireball v90 with 2Watt Laser!

In this episode we will fire up the Probotix Fireball v90 with the 2 Watt laser and cut some stuff. We are using the gcode from the J-Tech Photonic Inkscape plug in bu the machine seems to be waiting for several minutes after reach the start position in line 12. Below is the Gcode:

500MW DIY laser Engraver engraving machine Picture CNC Printer 17cm X 22cm

by Mega Save [Mega Save]
Rank/Rating: 1789213/-
Price: -