Since Inventables doesn’t sell the longer rails to extend the size of the X-Carve, couldn’t you take the aluminum profile to a custom fab shop and have them make some for you? I’m guessing that numerous folks here would welcome longer rails, so if we had a group order put together, perhaps they would be cheaper per piece.
I think having a custom fab shop milling up rails would be very cost prohibitive as these are extruded aluminum rails.
A custom shop would need to mill these from an aluminum billet. The number of operations needed would far exceed the cost in labor, even when doing a fairly large order.
Have them extruded, that’s the only way you can make these. If that wasn’t clear in my message. Certainly the first profile mold would be the most expensive run, but afterwards just pushing out extrusion lengths should be just an order placement with the shop.
Eventually I’d like to move my 1000mm x 1000mm x-carve up to a 4’x8’ monster, so that I can cut full or half sheet goods. I’ve been trying to research and find information on my own because I haven’t been able to find any true diy discussions about it. People post their final build or talk about how they piece-mealed it along the way, but it really makes me wonder… if all you’re looking to do is go from x-length of rails to this size of rails, why aren’t there more discussions about it? What am I missing? Is it more difficult than replacing the existing rails with whatever length you want and increasing the length of your grooved belts, cables, etc? I dunno… in my mind it doesn’t seem like it would be that complicated, but the fact that no one has really discussed step-by-step approaches to lengthening your rails makes me think that it must be a super complicated process.
VXB.com offers this 4’x8’ kit that I’m considering, however before I go all in for $700 I’d like to know that the x-carve components are more or less compatible with it out of the box without having to buy 30 different connectors and things that weren’t originally accounted for.
My other thought was combining linear rails from Openbuilds Parts Store. Since their longest rail is only 1500mm, I thought what if you butted say two 1500mm rails together and then tied them together using three of their 1000mm Openrail Linear Rails. I would think that if your bolts that connect the linear rail to their v-slot rail are running every 6 inches or so (just a guess, hard to tell from the pictures), that this would help to tie the two rails together very tightly and keep them in line to each other. Then it would just be a matter of attaching your various motors and gantries. Or maybe I’ve horribly oversimplified this.
Maybe this rambling will help add to the discussion and spark some ideas from you all. Maybe it’s just me, but it doesn’t seem like if you’re paying $1500-2000 for the x-carve system that it shouldn’t be that same amount or more just to upgrade the rail lengths double what you’re starting with. There’s has got to be a way to not cost an arm and a leg to do it…