Cheap metal substitute

I’m not sure if many are like me and relatively new to Fusion 360 as a Cad Cam package and just as new to the machining world. But I am having a blast making or trying to make custom muscle car parts. One thing I have come across is making bad parts will destroy very expensive steel and break very expensive tools.
I found this thing called a “Yoga Block” and had an idea. I tried a bunch of different tools, both metal and wood and found a 2 fluted wood endmill cuts it very smooth at 8000 rpm. They cost like $6 for a 9"x6"x3" block and are cheaper if bought in bulk. I had to buy some because my wife’s somehow came up missing…

Does anyone know of a reason they shouldn’t be used on the MR-1? Vise holds them great and no reason to use coolant because they don’t get hot. Found it as a great way to trial parts.

Its not uncommon to use wood for test machining I don’t see any reason not to use it other than the debris is annoying

I haven’t used that particular material but have machined MDF to check form and function of smaller parts before.
There are a few other materials handy for trialing parts. Wax works well for some things as well, and you can always melt it back into a block when you’re done.

Foam isn’t very environmentally friendly and does make a mess of the machine, so I’d prefer to use wood or wax for prototyping.

However I have used surplus pink foam insulation for the same purpose. Works fine, cleanup is a bit messy, but good for quick prototyping. It’s also cheap for high bulk/low strength applications, for instance I used it to make a holder for my ER40 collets.

Foam make also be good for making forms for composite applications (fiberglass/carbon fiber) and is something I’ll likely play with in the future.

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