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Discussion Starter #1
I finally got my Samson 510 CNC plasma table up and running! The plasma cutter is not installed yet, because the room it is in has no ventilation at the moment. That will change soon.

I purchased this machine over three years ago for about 19 Grand. It sat in a crate until last year, when a friend from L.A. flew out to help me assemble it and get it ready. Then it sat ... assembled ... for another YEAR. Three weeks ago, I finally dragged a computer, desk, etc. out to the machine and turned it on for the first time. I have been going through the learning curve for the software while cutting sheets of foam and soft fiberboard so mistakes were not costly.

Now the computer is hooked up, and a ROUTER has replaced the plasma torch (for now) so that I can really learn the DesignEdge software. I am having a LOT of fun with this machine. But I am having a mental block for ideas of what to produce. Right now, there's a $20,000.00 snowflake hanging from my mailbox! :biggrin:

So I am looking for ideas. What do YOU believe I could design, cut out and SELL?

The cutting table is 5'x10'

I can cut all plastics, wood, foam, Sintra board and so forth. Anything a router can cut. I have not experimented with aluminum or aluminum diamond plate YET, but I think I could handle it.

I need ideas. I was thinking of an eight foot long oval sheet of some tough material with the (insert brand here) LOGO cut out, or maybe flames along the edges, or ???

What about custom shaped polycarbonate windshields?

Free your mind, and help me find that special "thing" that I can produce to generate income.

For any really GOOD idea, I will ship the first successful unit to the person who submitted it absolutely FREE! PM me with address details and ONLY if I request them. Do not post them here.

Awaiting your replies...



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look into small signs, about license plate sized, that someone can hang below their plates (car/truck and bike) or between the forks of the bike....the windshield idea can be ok....you can always go bigger as you get more experience/control with the software.....

a guy on another site I go to makes decals for people...colored, reflective...whatever they want.....so the logo thing should work out ok, but offer all sizes from as big as you can on your table to the smallest you can get
 

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How about motorcycle gas tank logos? Side covers? Lexan plastic would be cool for this. I don't know if your cutter is just for flat stock or has length x width x height 3-D capabilities. My minds eye sees a rounded over base in one color for the fastening portion of a side cover with perhaps a smoky grey covering portion. Do lettering incised partially through the cover. Maybe marry a 3-D printer to your cutter to make the some things as a laminated assembly.

Fancy script lettering for the base of the windshield?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
HMM... taking notes. I experimented today with the height control and successfully made a four step disk, with the center being the full thickness of the material minus .010" to shave off the top, then each successive step dropping 2/10" and shifting over 3/4" which was the width of the router bit.

I am still trying to figure out how the machine determines where the center line of the bit cut should fall so that the edge of the bit follows the intended line. After several tries, I was able to produce a depression in dense foam of exactly 3" in diameter. It sounds easy, but it is a bit more involved, as you have to tell the machine to cut on the left or right side of the cut path, depending on the path's direction wiring creation.

I'm getting better!
 

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Gone.
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Every year there's a small business that sets up at the main swap meet during Bike Week that sells all kinds of CNC plasma cut metal items. Frame gussets, lever blanks, peg mounts, art and logo stuff....all kinds of stuff. I can't even begin to list the different stuff they sell. And they'll do custom work for you too.

I stopped by there last week with the intention of taking some pictures of their wares, getting a business card or website address, and talking to them, to hopefully give you some ideas of what others are offering.

However, when I went to enter they are now charging to enter the swap meet. I was like, "WTF?" and the guy was telling me they had a motorcycle stunt show, and custom this, and a band, and what-all. They're trying to turn a good honest swap meet into an event venue, the effers. Sorry, but I'm not paying 14 clams to walk around and look at rusty metal and used parts.

I'll keep my eyes open though, and if I see them set up elsewhere or can remember the name of the business I'll send you a note. They had a ton of cool stuff that might give you ideas.
 

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Shaper Of All Things Metal
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Not sure if we're supposed to post links here, but if you go to facebook and put 'Triple E Signs & More' in the search box it will take you to a sign makers page that shows some of the things they make. You need to figure out what is of interest in your area. This guy is in Nebraska so ag related is good for him plus anything Husker.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
I don't do Facebook. You shouldn't either.

Have you ever READ the agreement you click on to gain access to the site?

The Facebook app on your phone, and the Facebook account on your computer gives Facebook expressed permission to access your camera and mic at any time "without your knowledge or consent."

No thank you!

As for the plasma table, I have been keeping busy!

pinterest.com samson-510-cnc

I don't have the plasma cutter hooked up yet, but I'm doing a lot with the router adapter so far. :biggrin:
 

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I see folks with big GATES to their property, you know, two poles and a spreader, spending the BIG BUCKS buying CNC routed stuff for the spreader, images of cows, family names, horses, etc.

YOu'd probably have a fine niche just cutting out images of motorcycles.

Who wouldn't like THEIR motorcycle outline with their NAME below to sit on top of the mailbox?

Cheesey, hell yeah. Take the $ and run.
 

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CUSTOM windshields.

Can you actually do that ... because the shield on my bike isn't quite right. Wouldn't be hard to re-design a better shield, and probably I could still fit it to the attachment hardware.

Worth thinking about.

dT
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
CUSTOM windshields.

Can you actually do that ... because the shield on my bike isn't quite right. Wouldn't be hard to re-design a better shield, and probably I could still fit it to the attachment hardware.

Worth thinking about.

dT
Yes, I could. There are two issues. A windshield is a part of a motor vehicle, so there is a liability involved in manufacturing one. For instance, if I made you a custom windshield and it snapped at 90 MPH and sliced your face or something, I would be liable for the injury (if I were a company that SOLD the shield to you.) This is why companies that make trailer hitches, trailers, and other things that bolt onto vehicles and motorcycles (and boats and quads and ... and ...) carry product liability insurance.

I made a larger windshield for someone once, out of polycarbonate. it was fantastic ... up to 90 MPH when the shield flopped over at the mid-point. Slowing the bike down popped the shield back up, but then the bend was clearly visible in the material, and future "flop overs" would occur at lower speeds, now that the initial strength had been compromised.

The second issue is that you can cut anything out of a flat sheet of polycarbonate, but heating it and bending it successfully without creating visual warpage and anomalies is far more difficult. I could build an oven to heat polycarbonate to bend it over a form, but I don't have the tools that windshield manufacturers have to make it a "perfect" bend. This is why those seemingly "nothing to it" windshields are so expensive. You are paying for the perfection of the bend, and the liability of mounting it onto your motorcycle.

Simply cutting a flat piece and manually bending it around to your mounts is not an option. The mounts are not made to resist the material's efforts to straighten out.

However, what did you have in mind? custom carvings? A special shape? Ohooh-La-La ?? :coffeescreen:

I'd be willing to discuss the project with you and possibly make ONE, as a gift, with you reimbursing me for the cost of materials. :big grin: Where are you located? What did you have in mind?
 

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Shaper Of All Things Metal
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Looks like you are getting some good suggestions and already have some good ideas in mind.

In years past I did a lot of ornamental ironwork. It's fun when the creative juices start flowing. I would have loved to have a CNC plasma cutter then.

Enjoy!
 

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Custom Hub caps, maybe for classic cars?

Not sure if you can, but custom wheels?

Motorcycle radiator covers are popular custom items.

Skull/other motorcycle related pendants?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I hope to have the plasma cutter up and functional in the next two weeks. Then I can really start having fun!
 
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