Masso plasma/router table?

danojack

DanOjack
Hi folks I m about ready embark, starting from scratch, to upgrade top to bottom my 5 x 20 plasma cutting table. As a rookie in the CNC world I am reaching out to get some good advice in my account to get a table that s capable of both plasma cutting and router cutting. Masso appears they have The set up for plasma and the set up for routering.Question is, can I have both on the same table without too much headache swapping from one job to another, Without reconfiguring the whole machine again.

Your input please and Thank you Dan
 

breezy

Arie
Staff member
@danojack

Dan,

Unfortunately currently you need to swap out both software and configuration files to change from one to the other.



But good news is that we are working on combining Plasma & Mill software into one bundle, then will be no need to swap software. There is no timeframe at the moment of when that will be available.

Regards,

Arie.
 

breezy

Arie
Staff member
@danojack

Dan,

Rather expensive way to control a plasma/router combination, when changing software is as easy as rebooting MASSO, entering software upload screen (pressing F1 key during reboot), load required software, reboot and then selecting the correct configuration file, load that and you are in business. If you have two USB memory sticks, one for each mode then it is even easier because you don't have to select files as there will only be one of each to select from. Total time a couple of minutes or less.

Regards,

Arie.
 

frank-corcoran

Frank Corcoran
Just some thoughts on combo machine design:
  1. Remember a router must be built to withstand cutting forces that plasma will not see. A router will incorporate a much heavier gantry and z axis mechanism for this reason. With a plasma you are looking for a ridged but light design. Many have tried using router plans for plasma but achieving the acceleration and travel speeds necessary for lighter gauges becomes a pursuit of diminishing returns. Of course the non-moving elements of a plasma design should be as rugged as you can manage. Not too many load their router with a lift truck!
  2. Plasma waste material exits below the table whereas router waste exits above the table. Routers use a solid spoil-board which must be leveled to the cutter to pretty exact tolerances. Any bed supports used for plasma will need to be gapped to allow fumes to exhaust. These supports will get ragged in short order so merely dropping a spoil-board on top for routing may not be viable.
  3. Plasma is messy! Routers have a lot of chips and dust which need to be dealt with; but they are not hot or abrasive. Plasma tables generally need to provide at least some protection from pitting and wear of precision components. Things like gear racks, linear ways, lead-screws, and motors need to be covered or located out of the way of dross and smoke. Many plasma tables use a water tray to mitigate smoke but again that solution is incompatible with sawdust!

There probably is some kind of middle ground that could work, and if you come up with something then please share your design. I am not meaning to put you off but CNC machines are generally purpose built for the task needed. Having built both machines I would say the router is the easier build, and more fun to use; but I have made less money with it by far (if that is a reason for a build)!

The Masso is a nice controller and a firmware package that would allow different personas is probably possible technically. but since so few combo machines would be built there may not be much apatite to invest the resources chasing it down.

Frank
 

danojack

DanOjack
Hi Frank

Hi Frank

It was refreshing to read your points about the my attempt of using a table for two types of services. I agree with everything you have mentioned and you have pointed out things that I haven t considered.

I agree with everything you have mentioned and you have pointed out things that I haven t considered.

I purchased this 5 x 20 table which I believe was built by Nabisco Engineers and purchased by an art designer for signs and sculpture In Philadelphia. It originally was a router table which he converted to plasma cutter. The gantry made of heavy aluminum C channel and the machine is actually 6 x 24 inside given the gantry plenty of movement. I purchased this thing over eight years ago and finally willing to making it a real machine, the stepper motors are way too crude and weak and the windows 98 And dinosaur computer and software all needs to go.
I recently built a water pan for half the length of the machine the other half is begging to be a router machine table. The Gantry Has 3 Z axis locations. All driven by rack and pinion ,straight up the machine is a beast
There s so much to learn in this field from Mock 3, fusion 360, ohmic sensing, THC, clear path motors, it goes on and on. Needless to say I m taking baby steps to make the machine perform properly, haven t looked much into the router side of it yet.
thank you for your input and I appreciate any helpful info to make this machine perform properly and safely thanks Dan
 

jackcartermo

jackcartermo
Quote from DanOjack on March 2, 2021, 12:05 pm

Hi folks I m about ready embark, starting from scratch, to upgrade top to bottom my 5 x 20 plasma cutting table. As a rookie in the CNC world I am reaching out to get some good advice in my account to get a table that s capable of both plasma cutting and router cutting. Masso appears they have The set up for plasma and the set up for routering.Question is, can I have both on the same table without too much headache swapping from one job to another, Without reconfiguring the whole machine again.

Your input please and Thank you Dan

Hi Dan -



I wish you goodluck for your new journey and I have found this guide very helpful in selecting the best router table for my requirement and would recommend you to give it a go.

https://cncrouterhub.com/best-router-table/



Thanks
 
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