ER Collet Racks

DIY ER Collet Storage Trays

Introducing the next G Code download product available in the Cnc Philosophy store. ER Collet storage trays for both ER11 and ER16 collets.

er collet trays

Now that you own a cnc machine you need to put it to good use and making your own shop equipment is useful and good practice.

ER Collet organisers are typically very boring, definitely functional, but dull, so I made them into a craft project. This gives you a choice on how you want them to look when finished.

What do you get?

  • G Code files to make 2 different ER Collet storage trays
  • PDF setup instructions
  • 12 individual G Code programs

The ER11 collet storage tray has been designed to look like a gun cylinder, with the collets loading like bullets.

ER11 collet holders
Finished and painted ER11 Collet Storage

The ER16 collet organiser is an oversized lego brick with the dimensions being accurately scaled from their original size.

red er16 collet
Finished and painted ER16 Collet storage
Finished and painted ER16 Collet storage

I made mine from wood on my 3018 cnc, if it can be done on this machine, it can be done on any machine.

wooden er11 holder
Finished, unpainted ER11 Collet Storage
wooden er16 storage tray
Finished, unpainted ER16 Collet Storage

This also makes it possible to use these programs on a more capable machine to make these ER Collet trays from aluminum if you want.

I used both Candle and Universal Gcode Sender to run these programs, but they are also compatible with Mach3 if that is what you use.

ER16 ‘Lego’ Collet Organizer

For the stock I used some 1” X 3” finished poplar wood moulding. The actual size of the wood cross section should be approx 3/4” (19mm) by 2 5/8” (66mm) which is big enough to suit this, being the largest part .

raw stock for er16 tray

I used prefinished moulding because it is flat, perfect for using the masking tape and super glue technique for holding stock to the table.

The stock size

ER16 Lego brick = approx 5.1” (130mm) long  X 2.55” (65mm) wide  X .75” (19mm) thick

The finished size will be 5” X 2.48” (127mm X 63mm), the thickness being the same as stock.

Just make sure the stock thickness is .77” or less. (that’s how deep the cutter travels in the Z axis.)

Setup procedure

The setup is very straightforward, use masking tape and superglue to hold the stock to your spoilboard. The only aspect you have to be careful with is getting the stock glued down square (parallel) to the X axis.

setup er16

I did this by drawing a pencil line parallel to the edge of the table as a guide.

The X and Y datums are at the center of the stock so I drew 2 lines, corner to corner, and positioned my end mill by eye to zero my datum on the cross lines.

Running procedure

The running procedure is very straightforward, just run each program in numerical order making sure to run the correct end mill for each program.

Tools

To make the ER16 Collet ‘Lego’ tray all you need is a 1/8” end mill and a 2mm ball nose end mill.

2 end mills

video

YouTube video


ER11 ‘Gun Cylinder’ Collet Tray

For the stock I used the same 1” X 3” finished poplar wood moulding. I just cut off a 1.8” square piece.

er11 stock

The stock size

ER11 Gun Cylinder = 1.8” (46mm) X 1.8” (46mm) X .75” (19mm) thick

Finished diameter is 1.63” (41.4mm)

Setup procedure

The setup is very straightforward, just the same as before, use masking tape and superglue to hold the stock to your spoilboard.

The X and Y datums are at the center of the stock again so draw 2 lines, corner to corner, and position your end mill by eye on the crossed center lines.

Running procedure

The running procedure is very straightforward, just run each program in numerical order making sure to run the correct end mill for each program.

er11 barrel

Tools

To make the ER11 Gun Cylinder you need a 1/8” end mill, a 1/8” Ball nose end mill and a 2mm ball nose end mill.

3 end mills
The 3 end mills used for the gun cylinder

video

YouTube video

What tooling is needed?

The only cutting tools you need to complete both the collet racks are:

  • 1/8 “ flat end mill
  • 1/8 “ Ball nose end mill
  • 2mm Ball nose end mill

When I milled my first parts I used the ‘burr’ style end mill. It finished the parts ok but left an uneven finish on the sides.

This is not ideal if you want to paint and finish them to look as presentable as possible without having to spend extra time sanding them smooth.

So for the second ‘Lego’ tray I used typical spiral flute end mills and the result was (obviously) a lot better. Minimal sanding, if any, is needed to get a presentable finish ready for painting.

lego finish
Super smooth finish with spiral flute end mills

Another added benefit of using sharp spiral flute end mills is the noise reduction. The 3018 vibrates a lot and this was reduced considerably with spiral flute end mills.

If you need to purchase end mills for this project there are some options below.

40Pcs End Mill Bits Set 1/8" Shank, Mcwdoit CNC Router Bits...*
  • 【High Quality】Mcwdoit 1/8 end mills are made of ultra-fine grain carbide material (tungsten steel), with great cutting and milling performance.
  • 【Cost-Effective Kit】4 Type Each 10Pcs, Ball Nose Bit 2-Flute, Flat Nose Spiral Bit 2-Flute, Nano Blue Coat and Titanium Coat CNC Router Bits, satisfying your different needs.
  • 【Advantage】Carbide rods and tungsten steel rods with high hardness, high wear resistance, clean surface, neat, no glitches.
  • 【Wide Application】PCB, SMT, CNC, Mold, plastic fiber, carbon fiber, hard wood, printed circuit board, aluminum and other precision parts processing.
  • 【Parameter】Overall Length(OAL): 38mm; Shank Diameter(SD): 3.175mm

This set above contains 1/8″ spiral flute flat end mills + many others

1/8" 22mm Carbide Ball Nose End Mills CNC Router Bits Double...*
  • High-density polished, wear-resistant, high temperature.
  • High cost-effective, improve efficiency.
  • Mainly used in cutting and engraving.
  • Can be engraved Copper, Aluminum ,ABS, Acrylic, PVC, Nylon, Resin, most plastics ect..

A set of 1/8″ ball nose end mills

OSCARBIDE 1/8" Shank Carbide End Mills Tapered Ball Nose...*
  • Each one pcs Ball Tip Radius0.25mm ,0.5mm,0.75mm,1.0mm,Shank Diameter: 3.175mm ,Cutting Length: 15mm
  • Due to the Great hardness of solid Tungsten carbide Material,Long service life, not easy to break, precise
  • Can easily remove materials like Wood, acrylic, PVC, cooper, aluminum, and steel, MDF, Resin, PCB
  • Rustless and anti-static, best performance with high precision,work perfect on milling or cutting machines
  • Widely used For CNC Engraving, Milling, Roughing, Hollowing, 3D sculpturing purposes

This set of Ball nose end mills contains a 2mm + others, perfect for 3D work.

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