Plasma Cutter Gen 2 - Part 3: More Rigidity and Linear Rails
The table was getting pretty substantial in size and strength, however, I just wanted to make sure that the water table be very supported. I added in plenty of structure to support the water table, and any material weight that will go on it also. You can see the added support in the following pictures with the installed linear rails.
Then, the linear rails needed to be installed so I can get to work on the gantry design. 3/8″ cold rolled steel 3″ wide was used for the slides, and I drilled 1/4″ holes down the length of each rail at 12″ apart. I stood the rails off the frame with 1.5″ square tube with 3/16″ wall. I tapped 1/4-20 holes in the square tube in which to mount the cold rolled steel with. To make sure all the holes lined up perfectly, I pulled out the vertical mill and got to work! All the holes lined up perfectly!
The X axis will be rolling on an extruded aluminum piece that was ordered from PBC (Pacific Bearing Corp). It is one of their wider profiles, and features an integrated V rail that is made from hardened steel. This is going to be a key component to the gantry to make it very accurate, strong, yet light weight.