A couple of years ago, we showed you the Pocket NC, a 5 axis CNC milling machine that fits on your desktop. It was still in development, but it looked absolutely amazing. The big question for many at that time was, “What about software?” Well, they continued development until it was ready for sale, put together a series of Kickstarter packages and they’re offering a one year commercial license to Autodesk Fusion 360 to go along with the machine. I guess that takes care of the software issue!
The mill has impressive specs. You can machine soft materials like plastics and wood and most materials up to alloys such as aluminum. This little engine block looks pretty sweet, in fact, this mill looks like it’s just the thing for many of those scale model machinists we’ve seen building functional engines, but it can certainly turn out parts of any sort. Robot builders and other makers and experimenters will want to give this a look.
They’ve already made their goal and the project will be funded, but they’ve actually closed all of the levels where a Pocket NC machine is included. It looks like they don’t want to get too many orders to fulfill in a reasonable period of time. The little machines are assembled in their garage in Montana so I imagine it would be easy to overpromise and underdeliver, a bad combo when you’re just starting out. As production gets going, it’s likely they’ll begin taking orders again, a good thing since I bet quite a few potential machinists are disappointed they didn’t get in before they hit their order limit.
Once this gets out to a wider user group, we’ll probably see some pretty ingenious creations. Very cool!