On Sunday, I bought my first X-Carve, a 1000mm x 1000mm Fully Loaded. What are some tips that I should know before building it and during my first projects.
Congrats, welcome to the club! Here’s a few of my suggestions:
-Don’t try to carve on anything expensive or exotic until you’ve got it dialed in. Odds are you’ll have to tweak belt tension, V-wheels, and/or potentiometers. Practice on MDF or something cheap until you’re happy with what you get.
-If you’re going to stiffen the X-axis (see my video in a thread below for one method), it’ll probably be easier to do that during initial assembly. You can also search the forums for “X axis stiffening” and find a few good threads with other methods.
-Look online for some of the videos that YouTube woodworkers made about assembling the X-Carve. There will be all sorts of assembly tips, problems we ran into, and alternative methods that you may prefer. My assembly tips video is in one of the forum links below.
-If you’re going to use Easel, you can start using that immediately. You can design your projects and save them, which will let you knock them out one after another when the machine is dialed in.
-Finally, don’t hesitate to ask questions on here. If somethings missing, bring it up. If it sounds bad, record it and upload it for us to see. If bits are breaking, smoke is showing, or something isn’t working right, take pictures or video and let us know. There’s a lot of “new” experience on here that can tell you what caused their machine to do the same thing.
Here’s a few useful threads to get you started:
Here is my writeup from way back, but it might help… the whole thread is a pretty good one to read.
It’s a bit of a long post, but if you click the little arrow to the right, you can see the whole thing.
If you do not already have a Dewalt 611 router (or similar palm router) as the spindle, go ahead and order the mount and router.
Plus I agree with @AngusMcleod - A dust collection system and dust shoe are really not an optional item, you will need them. The Harbor Freight 2HP Dust Collector is an excellent bargain if you don’t already have a system in place.
Is the 1hp one worth it to save on some space?
I don’t think the small one has the separator and filter.
I would agree to all that has been said so far. My two cents though:
Plan your table now, how/where etc. how you will run your dust collection and such.
Also, if you plan to extend where the power supply/g-shield will sit, since not many of us like it right next to the machine, plan that in the build of the machine. I did not and it was a pain to run the wires to get it where I wanted it.
Just my two cents. For what it’s worth. and welcome.