Just pulled the trigger on a Crossfire. I’m an artist and we’ll see where this journey takes us. I’ve always wanted to do Kinetic Sculpture, and combined with a CNC Tormach mill and a lot of forging skills (I make knives and swords as well), I’m thinking this will allow me to cut gears, pulleys, etc., as well as shapes I can then dish and form.
I’m well versed in CNC and G-code as I have a Tormach Mill, though I’m self taught. I design on Autodesk Inventor, and use BobCam. I know Inventor will work fine, but the cam program may be more problematic.
I purchased the basic 2x2 unit, and am thinking about whether the Z-axis is needed now. I believe I can always add it on for the same price.
Been reading up on the forum and you all look to be a helpful bunch, I look forward to handouts of knowledge from the hive mind! Thanks in advance!
I concur with @ds690 , get the Z Axis and THC. They will allow you to compensate for any warp that happens when cutting thin material and will also compensate for any sag the cantilevered arm of the 2x2 table. The cant can be adjusted, but it’s a PITA to maintain. No need to worry about it if you have THC.
I’m seriously considering the z-axis. I just figured I had a little time to decide, it is not an inconsiderable cost. Shipping is 5-7 weeks out.
I’ll consider sheetcam and download a trial as it is supported. I’m so used to making stuff on Inventor that its easier than switching to Fusion, and I already own it. I played with Fusion on a sample part down to making the “manufacturing” steps and it’s pretty simple, same as Inventor but everything in a different place (which is frustrating). It’s just $50 a month is steep for my use. I just have to see what files I can export from Inventor.
Welcome. I am new here as well. I have the PRO with THC and Hypertherm 45xp. Fusion 360 is free for hobbyist use. But it sounds like you are a business so they would charge for that.
So far, very impressed with the cut quality. The model created on Fusion 360 (or probably any 3D drafting programs) is a great representation of the metal off the table. I am still considering SheetCAM.
Thanks. I’m considering a hypotherm 45xp. I guess I misunderstood the pricing on fusion, it appeared that it was only a demo but looking again it’s a limited version and probably fine for our use. Thanks for the correction! I’m not a business, just a retired artist… and if I someone wants to buy my work…
The above is a good post by @jamesdhatch. (If I did it right).
James explains that it is the full program capabilities for free use if you do less than $1000/yr sales. The free use subscription is for one year and is renewable each year.
There is another thread that talks about how to renew the free yearly subscription, but you can’t renew before the subscription runs out.
Well at this point my sales is way under $1000 a year… about $1000 under That would be an easy way for me to go. Since I design on Autodesk Inventor it will be easy to import files to Fusion to do the CAM work. I ran one sample piece through the workflow and it was easy to do. Fusion and Inventor are pretty much the same, just everything is in a different place
You are way ahead of the game. There are lots of great tutorials for “Fusion 360 plasma cutting” on youtube.
A great post, I found was here:
@TinWhisperer also has a thread called: “Practical Fusion 360 Videos” on this forum. He knows Fusion 360 and the CAM aspects. Unfortunately I was not able to view his videos due to my slowwwwww internet. BUT, based on the above mentioned post by him, he knows what he is talking about. I tried that technique of slowing the feedrate on the curves and OMG, what a difference.
This is the very dangerous time period you are entering:
When I am anticipating a big project, and there is nothing to do but wait, I get myself into all kinds of trouble. I see something that I think would be perfect: wheels, outfeed table, additional lighting, new mouse for the laptop, extension cord…2 months later, the CrossFire Pro arrives and none of the stuff will help. It is too late to send it back: The return window has CLOSED! Now I have to hide everything in the garage and make up an excuse for why I need two spare mice for the one laptop.
I better quit. My wife might see this. Forget everything I just said. I was just suggesting that I am glad I am not “waiting.”
you think you got it bad…try being @Cletus …he had to explain why he was dragging a machine mill through the KITCHEN on a skid…just to get it to his shop…
that was after the fact he had to tell her he ordered it…that is tough!!!
Thanks all for the input! Here’s what I ended up doing.
First: Langmuir just shipped my z-axis + THC upgrade. (sorry… I’m a child of the 60’s and THC just has a different meaning to me ). Ordered on Feb 7th.
Obviously I went for the THC upgrade. I also finally bit the bullet and purchased the Hypertherm 45xp. Found if you buy the #88124 configuration you get 2 hand torches for $50 more. Per one of the posts here, I’m going to change the #6 and 8 pin on the 15 degree torch and make it a dedicated machine torch. That way I’ll have the 90 degree hand torch to cut anything around the shop.
I was going to just buy a second 6 cfm compressor, and let the two run in tandem but I only have 60 amp service in the studio. So I bought the California Air Tools 10.5cmf 220v compressor. I’m hooking that up to a dryer now. Turns out the fittings to the tank are 3/8-19 BSPP thread. Thank god for McMaster Carr! I’m silver soldering up odd connectors to make this work. I’ll post the trials and tribulations of the compressor somewhere else with some pics for others.
Of course I also had to completely rearrange my studio to make room for the table. This has been weeks of work, but once a decade whether it needs it or not I always say!
You find all kinds of things that you forgot where you put them with that cleaning. My rule is if I have not needed it in 5 years, it won’t hurt to hang onto it for another 5 years. At least now I know where it is!