We’ve designed our Bantam Tools Desktop CNC Milling Machine to be ready to use right out of the box. To help you get started quickly and easily, this guide walks you through the key components of your new CNC machine. Being familiar with these components will empower you to use the mill more efficiently, have a better understanding of the guides in our Support Center, and communicate with other Bantam Tools users more effectively.
The Bantam Tools Desktop CNC Milling Machine is a 3-axis machine. A 3-axis CNC machine is a mill that has three axes that move simultaneously to mill 2D, 2.5D, and 3D parts. Our Desktop CNC Milling Machine has X, Y, and Z axes.
Each axis is driven by stepper motors in precise movements or “steps”.
- The X-axis stepper motor is located on the outer, left-hand side of the machine.
- The Y-axis stepper motor is located on the outer, backside of the machine.
- The Z-axis stepper motor is located on top of the XZ-carriage inside of the machine.
The outside of the Bantam Tools Desktop CNC Milling Machine is called the enclosure, and it keeps all chips and debris inside the machine while you’re milling. Each machine comes fully enclosed. On either side of the machine are two polycarbonate safety windows. These allow you to view your job from multiple angles and, again, they keep chips and debris on the inside of the machine.
The loading door on the Bantam Tools Desktop CNC Milling Machine is also made of polycarbonate and it swings up. Once it’s open, you can load materials, tooling, or accessories as needed. On either side of the loading door are two magnets that hold the door in place.
There are two screws on the left side of the shelf where the loading door sits when it’s closed. This is the Bantam Tools Desktop CNC Milling Machine’s safety interlock.
When the safety interlock is engaged, it signals to the Bantam Tools Milling Machine Software that the door is closed and it’s safe to mill. The spindle won’t start up until the safety interlock is engaged. On the Bantam Tools software wizard, there’s a red warning label that lets you know the door is open; the label disappears when the safety interlock is engaged.
On the far left side of the machine is the emergency-stop button, or E-stop button, which enables you to immediately stop a job. If you’re noticing an issue in your milling operation, press the E-stop button to engage it and stop the machine immediately. Once you’ve solved the issue, twist the E-stop clockwise to disengage it.
The electronics enclosure houses all the circuit boards that power the Bantam Tools Desktop CNC Milling Machine. The enclosure is located on the back of the machine and is separate from the machining area. This design helps ensure that no chips or dust get into the electronics. On the enclosure, there’s also an on/off switch and outlets to plug in USB and power cords.
Let’s take a look at the key components on the inside of the machine. The surface that you attach or “fixture” your material to is called the machine bed. We carry a variety of machine beds, including our Bantam Tools Desktop CNC T-slot Bed, Bantam Tools Desktop CNC Spoilboard, and Bantam Tools Desktop CNC Fixturing Pallet. The machine comes standard with a T-slot bed. You can easily identify the T-slot bed by its T-shaped slots. The type of machine bed you use depends on the parts you need to machine. Regardless of which machine bed you use, the “build volume” on the Bantam Tools Desktop CNC Milling Machine is always 7” x 9” x 3.5”.
Note: Check out our fixturing guides to learn more about the fixturing accessories and techniques you can use with your Bantam Tools Desktop CNC Milling Machine.
Next, we have the spindle house assembly, where the machine’s drive belt is housed. The Bantam Tools Desktop CNC Milling Machine has a spindle speed ranging from 10,000 RPM to 28,000 RPM. This spindle speed range is ideal for prototyping in aluminum, but it also allows you to mill a variety of softer metals (e.g., brass and copper), engineering plastics, hardwoods, and more.
Note: Learn more about the materials supported on the Bantam Tools Desktop CNC Milling Machine in our Materials Overview guide.
On the bottom of the spindle house assembly is the tool holder, which is the shaft that your end mill (tool you use to cut your material) slides into. To install or remove an end mill, tighten or loosen the collet nut. The collet nut holds the collet, which is like a sleeve that holds your end mill snuggly when you insert it into the tool holder.
Note: See our Installing & Locating a Tool guide to learn more about installing and removing end mills.
That’s it for the key components of your Bantam Tools Desktop CNC Milling Machine. As you dive further into the support materials in our archives, use this guide as a reference.
If you have technical questions, please contact our support team at firstname.lastname@example.org.