Make something big

Define big!
As a marketing manager I have always emphesized that the defenition of descriptive words can vary from one person to another. What is fast driving to me for example, is probably very slow to Mr Michael Schumacher. I decided to define somthing big, as somthing I need to use the shopbot milling machine to produce in the Fab Lab.

I decided to build a cabinet for Hi Fi equipment that is to be installed in a small clubhouse here in Sauđárkrókur. The cabinet will be taylor made for the clubhouse and the equipment, although I will design it to be somewhat flexible if the equipment will change later on. I am going to design the cabinet in inkscape, and mill it in the Shopbot from MDF. The cabinet will be assembled by pressfitting (glue will be added) and spray painted afterwards.


I spent a long time designing and testing a pressfit system that I was comfortable with. The system I ended with is 100mm long tabs, with 25mm long, 6.5mm deep pockets on each end. The female insert is somewhat like a pressed "T" to accept the male tab. I also experienced with the decoration on the cabinet, finding out that the best results came from using 60°V -cut mill, on the ine, and 1/8 inch endmill, on the line, to cut out the inside of the chain links.

The units for the cabinet were cut from two MDF plates. The shelves and the top were cut out in a single toolpath using 1/4 inch endmill. She sides of the cabinet were milled in two phases. First I used 1/4 inch endmill to cut slots for the shelfs, then I flipped the plate and used the same mill to cut out the airholes in the back of the cabinet and the pockets for the pressfitt system.

To engrave the chainlinks on the front and the sides of the cabinet I used 60°V-shaped mill. This was also used to soften the line of the opening of the cabinet. The toolpath was set to 2 mm in depth and on the line.

For cuting the sides I used 1/8 endmill. Two toopaths were developed, one for the inside of the chainlinks in the decoration and the opening of the cabinet. This toolpath was set on the line. The second toolpath was for the outlines of the cabinet. This path was set outside the line. Both were set at 12000 rpm and 1,3 Inch/sec passover.

The cabinet has been assembled but needs approwal from the club that I am giving it to, before it will be added some final touches and paint.