Hobby CNC vs Metal? LongMill MK2 carving a goddess into 6061 Aluminum

Hey everyone, over the past few weeks our engineers have been busy putting together feeds and speeds for the more rigid LongMill MK2 and Johann (one of the engineers) has decided to run the ultimate stress test by cutting a Versace Medallion in 6061 aluminum. The project features some big roughing cuts as well as precise finishing moves using four different cutting tools and we’d like to share the stunning results with you.

We used Fusion360 to generate the toolpath for this carve and the machining time was approximately 30 hours.

Link to YouTube video:

Click the link below to check out our new feeds and speeds page and see more information on the tools used.

New Feeds and Speeds Page

1/4″ Single Flute Upcut End Mill

1/8″ Single Flute Upcut End Mill

1/8″ Ball Upcut End Mill

1/8″ D0.5mm Tapered Ball End Mill

Steps to engrave aluminum using your LongMill:

  1. Turn on REST machining and use climb milling when generating any of the following toolpaths.

  2. Perform roughing with the first 3 tools using our suggested feeds and speeds. Leaving ~0.3mm of stock on all sides of the model. Use slotting step-down values for all 3 tools and values in the engraving section for the ⅛” ball end mill.

  3. Optionally, run an additional parallel toolpath using the ⅛” ball end mill after you have completed roughing with the tool, again leaving ~0.3mm of stock on all sides (this will save you heaps of time running the ⅛” tapered bit).

  4. Switch to the ⅛” tapered bit and run a roughing pass LEAVING ZERO STOCK. Feeds and speeds for cutting aluminum with a tapered bit is experimental so it’s only listed here at this time.
    17000RPM | 1000mm/min Feedrate | 320mm/min Plunge Feedrate | 0.1mm Stepover | 0.12mm Stepdown

  5. Shift your machine zero downwards by 0.12mm and run the finishing pass. You will need to lower your stepover to 0.02mm and exclusively use climb milling to obtain a good surface finish.

Versace Medallion by STL3DMODEL


Which begs the question… brass?

In your video, you invite us to show our versions in “exotic materials”. I am not sure that his qualifies, but here is my project, carved in Brazilian soapstone, oiled with walnut oil.

As soapstone is very soft, this project took a total of something under 2 hours. It is about 4.25" round, cut from a piece .75" thick. The roughing pass was done with a 1/4" ball nose, leaving .02". Stepover was 40%.Feed rate was 100ipm, plunge rate was 50. The finishing pass was done with the 1/8" tapered ball nose sold by Sienci. Stepover was 8%. Feed rate was 80ipm, plunge rate was 40. I used a 1/8" down cut bit to cut it out.

Given how soft this material is, these were very conservative numbers, but I was in no hurry. :grinning:

It’s not up there with your aluminum one, but it was a fun project. Thank you for posting the file.