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Thread: CNCing gun grips - has anyone done this?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Madison, WI
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    CNCing gun grips - has anyone done this?

    I've recently obtained access to a full-on Bridgeport style CNC mill, and was hoping to use it to complete a few projects.

    My woodworking skills are very limited. I'd like to use some rather unusual materials like burls or stabilized spalted wood, but I so far haven't touched them due to the significant cost and ease of chipping or splitting.

    However, these woods are frequently used in conjunction with CNC mills to make gun grips and knife scales. Seeing as how the tooling is rated for cutting steel and the machine has a much steadier hand than I do, I'm hoping it's just a case of the right feed rates. Does anyone have any tips on the subject?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Mountain Home, Arkansas
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    I don't know about the particular mill you mention, but what you are suggesting is done. There are several machines available for a job like that.
    Yes, stabled spalted woods could make some delicious grips. I stable wood. If you want to try I'll do one set for you for free. PM me if interested.
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Should machine wood just fine. Will just need to run the bits about the same speed they would as a router, higher or lower depending on the diameter of the bit.
    Darren

    To a small child, the perfect granddad is unafraid of big dogs and fierce storms but absolutely terrified of the word “boo.” – Robert Brault

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Westphalia, Michigan
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    I Can't think that there is much difference between a CNC mill and a CNC router,(in regards to your question) except the cutter speed on the router is probably higher. I believe most of the router folks use carbide, spiral, up-cut bits. You will have to experiment with the speed for each wood/cutter type to see what works. Some woods burn easily.

    I think I would find a block of crotch Hard Maple to experiment with. the wood grain would be similar to maple burl. I don't remember where you live but if you live in maple growing country I would talk to tree trimmers or firewood suppliers for a few pieces. Stabilized wood machines like plastic.

    If you really want some spalted maple I could send you some. Or maybe ship it to frank for stabilizing.
    I'm a certifiable tree hugger. (it's a poor mans way of determining DBH before cutting the tree down)

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Set the spindle speed as high as it will go. It will still be to slow but it will mill wood just use slow feed rates of probably not more that 50" I would think something more in line with around 30"
    A Turn N Time
    Components for John Smith Organs and the Hobby Organ Builder

    Frog Pond Guitars


    Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Madison, WI
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    Thanks for the tips in respect to spindle speed and feed rate. It looks like the big CNC mill might not be the best tool for the job, but as long as I've got access...

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    Billings Missouri near Springfield Mo
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    It will work Joseph just not as fast as a router CNC. A lot of pattern makers uses those types of mills to cut patterns but they are using a very tight grained wood when doing so, (Hard Maple, Cherry.......)
    A Turn N Time
    Components for John Smith Organs and the Hobby Organ Builder

    Frog Pond Guitars


    Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes.

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