CAM on the cheap?

Before I recently hauled a couple of big old data processing printers to
the dump I stripped out the stepper motors and driver cards. Now I have
four 600 in.oz. and three 150 in.oz. steppers. I have been playing with
the drivers and they seem to be compatable with TurboCAM and Mach2. Now
I am eyeing my RF45 knockoff. The main thing I would need to add CNC to
it is a set of ballscrews but that would cost $1K+. No way to fit that
in my allowance right now.
The mill is in good shape and has very little backlash. Mach2 has a
backlash compensation which they advise to use only as a last resort.
For work requiring only a couple of thou accuracy can I get by with the
stock leadscrews? Do I really need ballscrews?
Reply to
Glenn Ashmore
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Ballscrews have *much* lower friction, so you can use smaller motors. Ballscrews have nearly zero lash, so you won't get lost running open loop stepper controls after a few moves.
Sounds like you might have large enough steppers to overcome the friction of the acme leadscrews. But getting lost running open loop is a more important issue. If you can close the loop with position feedback, then the acme leadscrew lash can be compensated in software.
Reply to
Gary Coffman

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