Well, we’re making slow progress (but sure). The updated design of the housing for the pen decorator is nearing the final tweaks. This update includes a pair of tabs on the left side to house the idler pulley. The curved slot for the mandrel support doorway is removed to make conversion to the CNC pattern easier.
My big motivation is that I want to get back to work on the code, and to do so I need the housing in place, and the mechanics worked out. I need to refine the sled assembly to allow for installation of the drill – and to allow the sled to position the drill tip directly over the mandrel for etching cuts, and to the front of the mandrel (accounting for the thicknesses of the pen blanks) to cut facets.
The mandrel cover has been moved to the inside, to allow the screw pressure to keep the door in place (and add extra thickness to keep the screw from pivoting in use). The sled assembly added an extra layer to allow us to pinch the timing cable between plates, rather than having to glue or screw them in position. A short piece of the cable cut off, and laid with the teeth facing the two ends of the belt acts as a splice, when its pinched like this.
And then, after getting all the parts back together, I found out that all the material is being created from 1/4″ stock – so I have to tweak things one more time. Here’s hoping this is getting close to complete now!