At this point I have everything screwed together for the first subassembly.
It’s time to work on the axis travel arrangement.
I thought about 3 ways to do this, first was with a linear bearing approach, where I would ream a hole through a piece of steel to be the bearing, and make 4 of them, then make some sort of rail system out of round bar stock for the bearings to run on, however, that would mean some elaborate bracket sytem to hold the rails up, which would mean 4 rails 2 for each axis, then I thought about linear beraring surfaces, with simple rabbets cut on workpieces (guides) to be put together, to form a square channel rail system, lastly the good ole dovetail rail system, I’ve built quite a few projects using dovetail slides they are very efficient, so opted to use the dovetail method, for the linear slides.
Now to achieve the “X and Y” axis movement, I need a central dovetail slide block, which will have perpendicular dovetail grooves cut in it.
I need a thick enough stock to do this with so 1” bar stock will suffice for this.
Here the x y directions are drawn out for me to use as reference.
Now the design of this whole project is dictated, with the available bar stock I have on hand, in my metal bin, and because of that, I need to have the right sequence of machining operations, so as to not cut something wrong size.
I want to start cutting the dovetail slides, however the width of this piece,
determines the distance of the x axis movement on this assembly here
and the width of this piece
determines the length to cut off this piece here
which is the ‘Y’ axis movement,
Now I can start the dovetail slides,
first cut the stock to rough size, then flycut all 4 pieces to get good straight reference flat edges.
and finally start cutting the dovetails on the individual rails,
when all 4 are done, then the central block can be dovetailed.