Hi all, first post (and it's a biggie) but I have been a viewer for a little while, just wanted to show my project now that it's finally finished - truth is I'm quite proud of it but it is my first major piece of fabrication and I was generally pretty happy with the results. I found this forum whilst researching info on tables in general and particularly one arm bandit setups and have found it to be an incredibly valuable resource so a big thank you to all you regular posters, especially those who viewed and were able to give advice to Hern Berferd when working on his project. Hope that's working well for you by the way,
Sorry if this is a lot to read but it was a big project so I wanted to give some descriptions of process etc. Also I'm sat in a hotel in Southern Chile (see why in my blog below) with not a lot else to do so this was a good opportunity to make this post
A bit more of the back story
My girlfriend is an Artist/Designer (For more about her business and to see the table in action see WHINBERRY & ANTLER) click 'Behind the scenes for table in use'
You can also see her post from earlier today needing some help with exposure times (Jacinta1986) - as you can see this is very much a homemade approach but we hope to achieve consistently good results, hence the need for a good table, and a proper exposure unit is my next project but that will have to wait a few months until I return home from my current employment. This was also the reason the table was a bit of a rushed project as it HAD to be finished before I left so that she could be busy printing whilst I'm away. If anyone is interested you can see more about me, my normal job and my current location/employment @ Finn's Blog
The main requirement of the table was to be able to print onto rolls of plain fabric at a max. width of 1.5 metres and to be able to get consistent image alignment along the length of the roll. See my solution in the images below...
(sorry about sideways pics, using photobucket and it doesn't want to keep them the right way up)
Pole with discs holds roll of blank fabric
Leg Construction and slot in table bed
Front masterframe height adjustment and supporting stay
Rear hinge arrangement, counterweight bar and linear shaft support
Counterweight bar fixing and screen toggle clamp
Having seen existing 'professional/studio' tables i was happy with the basic table and master frame assembly and height adjustment, the major changes i made from existing tables was not to use a vacuum as there was no need when printing fabric, and to put a slot in the back edge of the table to allow the fabric to fall through the table top instead of passing underneath the rear edge of the masterframe where there would be potential issues with fabric touching the frame. This was achieved by using a sheet of 2mm galvanised sheet (much cheaper than stainless and a surprisingly good smooth finish) folded over a 20mm plywood sheet. All the outer edges were folded in a press but the folds into the slot had to be hand folded.
Linear bearing block or 'Pillow Block'
Squeegee holder with mounting plate bolted on top (you can also see the attachment point for removing sqeegee)
Close up of hinge point/UJ and print/flood adjustment
I was still struggling to work out how i wanted to make the sliding motion of the arm prior to seeing Hern's table so a big thank you for the linear shaft idea, as soon as I saw it I knew it was the perfect solution. I just upscaled a bit using a 40mm shaft at 2.1metres long and the single long pillow block bearing (not cheap but very pleasing). The other 2 issues I had were with the perpendicular hinges and with mounting the squeegee itself. Again taking ideas from the previous posts of others, I decided on what I think is quite a neat and compact solution for the 2-axis hinge for the squeegee. Using an old 1/2" socket Universal Joint that I had lying around in the workshop and by adding some plates and bolts to the UJ I was able to give adjustable print/float and give the swing keeping the squeegee parallel with the table top.
Also by keeping the 1/2" socket attachment on the bottom of the UJ and welding a socket to the top of the squeegee mounting plate I can very easily remove the squeegee holder just by giving it a light tug in order to clean it or change the squeegee size. This also led onto my next development and my decision to make my own squeegee handle. Simply a 1"x2"x21" aluminium section with a 9mm slot machined to a depth of 17mm in one edge. I then only had to order a cut to size blade and push it in before securing with 4 countersunk bolts into pre-threaded holes. 4 threaded holes in the top of the handle meant i could then bolt it straight to the squeegee mounting plate with the aforementioned socket welded in place. This also means that i can very quickly make more interchangeable squeegee holders of different lengths should we need them in the future.
I think that is most of the info but I'll answer any questions if anyone has them. Hopefully the pictures explain themselves. Just to note that the plan is to get all the steel components of the base table powder coated when I get back so the grey spray is just to stop it rusting in the meantime. It also give Jacinta some good testing time so any necessary modifications can be made before we paint it up. Also it does need more counterweights but this was all i had to hand so it will do for now, it's not too heavy to lift anyway.
I may give a full list of parts and materials later but as a rough guide approx £800 all in and somewhere in the region of 130 hours. I have really enjoyed it though
Thanks again for the help you didn't even know you were giving, look forward to reading comments and answering any questions,