I completed the LR2 in January and now moved it outside for the summer. I have only cut a few things so far but have used it as a pen plotter quite a bit getting used to the setup and calibration.
It is an amazing machine. I was expecting to see artifacts and errors due to the fact it uses long belts and I used tubes I found in the scrap bin and a cheap plastic table. In the end after carefully adjusting the tension on the bearings so they were just slack but not loose and squaring it up carefully we have some great results.
- The LowRider2 kit bought from V1 arrived quickly and was a huge time and effort saver. All bits were of great quality and go a long way to making the build easy. The stl part files were also very good. I’m using a SKR pro and the TFT35. Loaded the firmware and it worked strait away.
- I built it with the dual endstops, in fact 5 endstops, but having used these a while I’m not sure this was necessary. End stops seem to achieve the same effect as manually moving the machine up to stops in the y and X and setting the Z down on a couple equal blocks. However the dual end stops are reliable/repeatable so I will keep using them. If I disassemble the gantry for some reason, I would wire and install the limit switches earlier in a more rational and cleaner way. Disappointed that they are not estops. Never used the touch pad, I feel much safer using a sheet of paper and slowly jogging the bit down.
- I bought a Makita 707 router which turns out to be an excellent machine. The DeWalt was all sold out around Christmas. The Makita has a fan inside blowing down that, at any higher RPM, overpowers the vacuum and blows chips everywhere. I’m upgrading the vacuum with better hoses and will see. I have a couple other ideas.
- Using heavy stainless tubing seems like overkill. I know my X is only 40 inches but the 1" steel curtain rod I’m using seems plenty stiff enough. They are light, very straight, and were free. If these tubes start to bend I think I have other problems.
- I’ll be building a proper table at some point (when we can leave the house) but so far don’t see the need. The light weight plastic folding table is the kind they sell at Costco or Home Depot. It isn’t flat but I have a sheet of MDF that goes on top that is and the edges where the wheels run have a steel C channel inside and are straight. So far larger errors than the table are chips and other junk under the wheels and warped stock.
The only thing I would wish for is a better Emergency stop. The homing endstops are not Estops. Only Emergency stop I have is to kill the power at which point the gantry drops with the spindle still spinning. I know others on this forum have pointed this out already and I’ll keep watching for any ideas.
Thank you for the great design and the information from this forum.