Aluminum stuff

So… this is 2.5mm aluminum leftover window cladding from an office construction site… it’s got some kind of nice scratch resistant coating that is unfortunately non-conductive. It looks a lot like the finish on a macbook.

I forgot to turn down my router speed from 3 to 1 and managed to chip weld a bit but it was all good after I turned down the speed… I just discovered woodworking tape and it’s excellent… thin and mostly able to hold stuff down without residue unless you are cutting something really tiny.

Cut at 1000 mm/s with 0.3mm passes but reduced to 0.2mm since the sideways force was causing the pieces to come loose from the tape. Engraving with the ball mill turned out really nice but big so I have some tapered ball mills on order now.

I got my air blast hooked up finally and started at 150psi but it shot the chips clear across the garage… dialed it down to 50psi and still works ok… I’d like to rig up something to get the nozzle closer so the compressor doesn’t run so much (copper tubing?)

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Very inspiring! Using the regular upcut mills, other than the ball mill? 1 or 2 flute?

Just regular single flute upcut mills… cheapies from ali express. I tried both a 3.175 and a 2mm and was surprised the 2mm seemed to have an easier go at the slot cutting although I guess it makes sense. I might see how small I can go before they start breaking.

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How did you set up the air assist? I keep seeing these flexible nozzles, but no idea how to find them, are they just drill bit extensions that happen to be hollow?

Cheers!

You can check AliExpress for instance: https://www.aliexpress.com/i/32962109552.html

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Yep I got mine from Ali express… I had to buy 8mm tubing it just pushes in. I also had to get an adapter to go from the 8mm tubing to the connector on my air hose. It has a separate I think 4mm connector for cutting fluid to mist but I just leave that off.

https://m.aliexpress.com/item/32852708640.html

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Anodized aluminum surfaces aren’t conductive.

That must be it… I’ll have to see if I can get some more scraps it’s quite a nice finish.