“Hello Keith, Vanessa, Panel Judges, Contributors, and Visitors to this page,
My name is Spencer Clayton, I’m 29 years old and I’m a CNC machine operator from New Westminster, BC, Canada.
I post lots of photos and videos to https://www.instagram.com/
i.d.e.a.works/ , my website is http://www.ideaworks.website , and my youtube page is https://www.youtube.com/ user/matter9 , all of which I invite you to visit.
This year I graduated from the Mechatronics and Robotics program at the British Columbia Institute of Technology. In the program we learned a mix of mechanical and electrical engineering theory and practices. I took extra classes for lathe and mill programming using master cam and vericut software, part of a different program focussing on manufacturing engineering. I also volunteered to help classmates, and other students get on in the machine shop, helping the knowledge I learned online from channels like your own reach a further audience.
I am very happy to say that at the end of this summer I was hired as a machine operator at the local manufacturing company. I am gaining experience on the following machines: Fadal 4020, Fadal 6535, Tsugami FA45 dual turret lathe with live tooling and fanuc control, and MaxCut 4425 with fagor control.
I grew up helping out in the shop with my dad working on cars, and helping both my parents renovate our house inside and out. Way back in high school I was able to take shop in grade 8 but was encouraged to pursue other areas of study, though not for lack of aptitude. I studied music and played in many bands, and studied film and cinematography, which eventually had me designing and building components for custom camera systems. Eventually I decided I needed to know how to program and enrolled at BCIT, and while a better fit than the arts it was still not quite right. Fast forward to now and I am considering enrolling in the millwright program, as it seems I’m more often working on machines, than with them.
I have a benchtop X2 type milling machine that is undergoing a long term conversion to cnc control, while maintaining manual functionality. The electronics are reluctant, so I made up and use some quick change hand wheels to drive the axes through the motor shafts. I also have an Atlas 618 lathe that is in a continual process of improvement, having now had it’s compound slide brazed back together from 2 pieces, a rigid tool post riser made (footage in my video), and a more powerful variable speed dc motor fitted. I’m also working on an electronics lead screw conversion to get around the zamak change wheel transmission.
Well, that about wraps it up for me. I’ve wanted to enter this for a few years but never had the time, until now. Thanks for everything you, and everyone else on the various online machining communities, do to foster learning and creativity in the shop, and of course for going the step further and putting on this event.