Years ago, when I was starting out as a DIY machinist, my limiting factor was always the ease and convenience of rough cutting stock.
For obvious reasons, we're pretty well-versed when it comes to machining here at Tormach. But throughout our company - in several different departments - we also have an array of makers. We've seen Tormach employees create everything from horseshoe lamps to remaking wedding rings to DIY 3D printers.
Many Tormach customers start out by designing and building homemade CNC devices. Whether they’re retrofitting a manual mill or piecing together components to make a lathe. This week, we stumbled onto a metal lathe made out of concrete on Instructables. In fact, one of our founders, Greg Jackson, had a thesis in college that focused on adding concrete to drill press columns and cataloging the rigidity changes. While concrete can provide some similar properties to casting – some commercial machines even use a polymer concrete cast frame – it can fall short in a number of ways. Concrete has a tendency to heat up during the mixing and pouring process, which leads to cooling and shrinking as the material dries.