This is a 2ft. x 2ft. vacuum table designed for a CNCRouterparts "Benchtop Pro" CNC Router machine.
Process (in a nutshell):
- Obtain your MDF wood
- Load the file in Fusion 360 (free for hobbyists)
- Select/create your tool and regenerate tool-paths (Note: this could take a while. Fusion 360 just does not like this tool path. My computer uses up to 5GB RAM and 5-10 minutes to make any changes to the main air chamber tool path. )
- Process output files (keep operations separate)
- Load the file into Mach3 (licensed)
- Set your "zero" for X and Y but follow the NOTICE below for setting your Z-zero
- Run operation to cut main chamber
- Run operation to cut vacuum port
- Flip material, re-zero
- Run operation to cut "guide holes" - these holes are not through the material
- Assemble using duct tape and shop vac
- Fasten to work table
- Selectively drill out holes for your media size using a cordless drill and drill bit
NOTICE: You must cut the main air chamber using 2 passes. The file included does NOT do this automatically because my computer could not render the two passes without crashing. To achieve 2 passes, simply calibrate your Z-zero to 0.25 above your material on the first pass, and then calibrate Z-zero to true material top on your second pass.
Bolt Holes (recommended) can be added by creating a sketch on the material border, or by manually drilling. Bolts will keep both pieces of MDF square and tight to the table, while clamps may result in some slippage.
See pictures for more detail.
- air filter mask, eye and ear protection
- two pieces 2x2' MDF, 1" thick
- duct tape - for sealing the two tables pieces together around the outer edge
- shop vac - I used a small Rigid-brand "5HP Max" shop vac
- bolts, clamps or other fastening hardware
- cordless drill and 1/8" drill bit - for drilling out guide holes to match your media size
- M8x60 bolts, washers and t-slot inserts - for "Benchtop Pro" machine
- glue - for gluing the two pieces of MDF together around the outer border and also across all of the inner support "cubes." This can be achieved by spreading glue, sandwiching the two pieces together and then clamping or applying even force (e.g. weight) across the entire surface on a LEVEL surface. I opted NOT to glue the two pieces at first however I did notice that the two MDF pieces have a slight air gap between them which could result in uneven cutting with vacuum pressure changes. However, I'm doing through-cutting and not engraving so I am OK with this, plus this is just an experiment for now.
Note STL file will not work, and is only uploaded to satisfy Thingiverse programming. Fusion 360 does NOT seem to export in any formats compatible with Thingiverse.