We love and depend on our CNC Masters Supra Mill to make shoes here at OESHshoes.com.
I am not a manufacturer by training. I am a physician known for my research on the effects of shoes on the body, who was compelled to make shoes that do not abnormally increase forces through the joints in the body. That required making and testing a number of prototypes, which in turn involved making numerous shoe sole molds. Communicating with and making molds in China (where most shoe sole molds are made), was cumbersome and not something I wanted to continue as our business grew. Eventually we figured it would be better if we could make the molds ourselves. We searched online for CNC Milling machines and found CNC Masters.
OESH jig set up to make a pair of molds
Changing the tool
Milling the molds
Mold and final shoe
When we purchased the CNC Supra Mill, all I had was a rudimentary understanding of the Rhino CAD program. I did not know what an “endmill” was, or for that matter, what a “collet,” “dial indicator,” or “spindle” was. Nor had I ever taken a shop class (I took home economics instead). But in no time, we were milling away. We purchased MecSoft’s Visual Mill CAM program through CNC Masters and with a couple phone calls to CNC Masters and a couple more calls to MecSoft, we were churning out shoe sole molds.
We’ve been making our own molds now with the Supra for about 20 months. As soon as we make one set of molds and a batch of shoes (which quickly sell out), we’re on to a new style and a new set of molds. While the main reason we bought the Supra was to make better molds and to avoid communication delays with China, clearly, we have saved incalculable amounts of money by making our own molds. Not even considering the ability to make and test numerous prototypes, just one style of soles for example, means 20 different molds for all the sizes, each costing between $1000 and $2,000. The main benefit though has been the convenience and ability to try many different molds and styles – something that our customers greatly appreciate.
Throughout, the milling machine has been a rock and so has the technical support / customer service at CNC Masters who I so enjoy talking to and learning from. Whenever I have a question or concern, they’ll walk me through various protocols over the phone so that I can check each part of the machine. Initially, I did this a lot and I am so grateful for all their patience in explaining the basics to me. I have all the confidence in the world that with their help, we can figure out anything. It is so comforting to know that they are always there. I love our mill but I also love the tremendous support from CNC Masters.
I like to tell people who are thinking of getting a CNC mill, if I can do it, anyone can do it. CNC Masters truly makes it easy. In fact, they make it fun.
D. Casey Kerrigan, M.D.
Chairman, OESH Shoes
705 Dale Avenue, Suite E
Charlottesville, VA 22903
“The CNC Jr. Mill is purchased for general machinery by members of the Astronomical Instrumentation Group here at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. As the name of our group implies, we design and fabricate sensitive millimeter wave instruments for astrophysical studies. The CNC Jr mill will provides a quick and cost effective way for us to prototype great variety of mechanical parts needed by our experiments. Thanks to its fabricating capability, the facility really adds lots of fun to the work we’re doing here in the lab.”
JPL–NASA Pasadena, CA
These pictures come from our friends at Avro Enterprises Ontario, Canada. www.avroenterprises.com
Dear CNC Masters,
I had been spending a lot of time drawing one off my parts using CAD software and taking the drawings to local machine shops and paying a lot of money for each part. This greatly limited my experimentation for problem solving as I had to be very cost conscious for anything designed, because if it did not work, I was out a lot of money. This financial “stress” took the fun out of the designing and problem solving aspects of robotics. I was encouraged by my wife of all people to just buy a mill and do it all myself. Never having been within 3 feet of a mill in my life, I was intimidated by the concept, but I felt if I could teach myself to weld two soda cans together I could break enough end mill bits to learn how to use a mill. As a result of my learning from 30 lbs of aluminum stock from the remnant shop and going through a few cheap bits, the CNC Jr. has nearly paid for itself in under a year due to the cost savings of making parts myself. The learning process was fun and very straight forward thanks to the ease of use and the great phone support from CNC Masters and Mecsoft. My wife now refers to my CNC Jr. as my three dimensional printer for metal. She asked me one day “what is so exciting about this machine?”, I told her it is a metal printer, I draw a part on the PC, put metal in the machine and the part I drew comes out. I also told her “this is so cool, I wish I was 20 years younger so I could play with this that much longer!” Thank you for a great easy to use machine.
San Jose, CA 95153
Petach Tiqwa, Israel
This was done on the CNC Supra Mill. It is without saying that this is the best machine for your money on the market today. And the customer support that you will get from CNC MASTERS and their techs is second to none!! THANKS AGAIN!!
BAITY’S CUSTOM GUNWORKS, NC
Larry Egelhoff of Nolensville, TN (Nashville) makes prototypes, master patterns, injection molds and as a hobby various 3D carvings (see pictures). His total focus is on 3 dimensional designs. He purchased the Baron CNC with the 4th axis to allow him to machine a full 360 degrees as seen in the following pictures. The Baron was his mill of choice because it allows him to machine metal molds and parts with repeatable accuracy as well as the wood carvings. It’s compact size fits neatly in his shop. Larry can laser scan a 3D object, edit it and machine a copy in a very short time. The mill is the focus point of this operation. His comments were ” The Baron is a perfect fit for what I needed. I looked at what was available and could not find anything else with the required features at an affordable price. The canes and chalice were all made on the Baron using the 4 axis. I’ve included a couple more pix of the chalice in process. Depending on the detail desired this could be the final pass. The surface did not require any additional sanding. I did run a smaller tool only on the stem to bring out the fine detail. These items were made to check out the 4 axis capabilities. Obviously more than adequate.”
Nosotros, Intercomunicadores de Guatemala, somos una empresa pionera en Centro América en la fabricación de equipo electrónico, particularmente intercomunicadores, que satisface la necesidad local con productos adaptados a las necesidades reales de este mercado.
Los productos que fabricamos cuentan con un diseño guatemalteco en un 100%, tanto en la parte plástica, mecánica y electrónica. En el año 2007 se nos presentó la necesidad de fabricar nuestros propios moldes de aluminio para la inyección de plástico de los intercomunicadores. Para ello levantamos una serie de requisitos para la compra de una máquina herramienta con una relación costo/calidad/desempeño optimizado.
Un importante requisito fue obtener una máquina a la que se le pudiera dar mantenimiento localmente sin necesidad de depender de partes mecánicas propietarias, con un simple y robusto manejo de la parte del control numérico. De vital importancia fue el requisito de portabilizar información CAM desprendida de programas CAD en tercera dimensión que pudiera ser procesado por el control numérico de la máquina.
El resultado de nuestra búsqueda en INTERNET nos llevó inevitablemente a la empresa CNC Masters. Adquirimos inicialmente una de sus más simples máquinas.
Después de tan solo seis meses de trabajo con esta máquina, nos dimos cuenta que las expectativas sobre la máquina que adquirimos fueron superadas con creces a un nivel inesperado. Actualmente, después de tres años de trabajar casi todos los días con esta máquina, estamos en la condición de diseñar con AutoCAD (marca registrada) moldes para intercomunicadores con el más alto grado de complejidad concebible.
Del diseño desprendemos con métodos matemáticos desarrollados por nosotros, todos los trazos necesarios para finalmente generar los programas NC que necesita la máquina para fresar y perforar. Gracias a la interfaz abierta de código G que las máquinas de CNC Masters ofrecen podemos importar con un postprocesador el programa NC sin un solo error en ninguna de las tal vez ya millones de instrucciones que hemos generado y operado.
Pero el principal valor agregado de nuestra adquisición fue el inesperado apoyo que encontramos por parte del gerente y propietario de la empresa CNC Masters. Como es natural, la máquina ha sufrido desgaste mecánico y fue necesario hacer importantes cambios en partes mecánicas de la máquina. El propietario de CNC Masters nos fue indicando con precisión quirúrgica que hacer en cada uno de los cambios de mantenimiento que fueron necesarios. Esto lo ha hecho incluso mucho tiempo después de la expiración de la garantía de la máquina y sin interés comercial por vender repuestos mecánicos desde su sede.
La única forma que encontramos para agradecer a la empresa CNC Masters por este desinteresado apoyo fue generar este testimonio de agradecimiento hacia el gerente y propietario de CNC Masters, dando fé de la increíble capacidad técnica, del desinteresado apoyo, de su incondicionable atención al público y de su intachable ética profesional y comercial.
En septiembre del 2010, Dr.-Ing. Manuel A. López; Gerente General y propietario de ACI ITG Guatemala.
This is a project I did last year. The instrument panels were made from 1 inch thick plate sheet metal. Fab parts were also done on the Supra Mill and then bent to shape.
Creative Sheetmetal Services