I have been working on this new design for the PnP machine. I like designing with the laser cutter, because the cycle time is so low! This whole part only takes about 10 minutes to go from a flat sheet to pre-cut parts! Personally I feel like I suck at CAD, I think I'm pretty decent at sketching out an idea, but have a very hard time refining it within CAD. Using the laser I can quickly run off dozens of prototype parts, physically examining them and their interactions. Fail fast and Fail often!
The top plate was required to extend over the X rail to support the drag cable chain.
The design was driven by inspiration form Peter's dual head PnP head
I started by creating the front plate, with space for motor and linear rail, then the underside Panel which houses the down facing camera. I quickly found I required side braces to create a rigid unit. Initially these were just thin strips skirting the edge, After I increased their size I added the triangular pattern purely for looks.
The paint is still a bit experimental. I do like the colour scheme though, Makes it much more pleasing than boring tan MDF. I'd like to get a better result on the edges. Pure black would be nice, but I think pre-painting before the laser is a bad idea. I don't like the patchy half coat. I'll need to refine my painting process.
The camera module was modified to eject it's cable at right angle. I changed the connector to a JST PA series too. Because I have many on hand and it's the same 2mm pitch of the older JST connector.
Overall the design fits inn my machine nicely. it's a bit fiddly to install/remove. But not impossible. Z-height might be an issue, I'm swinging the camera quite low. I get about 30mm of Z-travel as is. Altering the height of the motor could easily increase this.