[Lab] CNC milling on kickstarter

Darcy Whyte darcy at inventorartist.com
Fri Jan 8 17:21:27 EST 2016

Why don't you kickstart your shapoko? Then everyone will want it.

If anybody's interested in CNC I'd invite you to come and check out the
CNC613 machine we've got over at Maker Space North. That's partly why I got
it. To increase the community awareness of this technology and increase
people's confidence in buying them. Also to let people try it to evaluate
their own needs (and increase their aptitude at using CNC)...

I think these cheap Chinese machines are the real entry level. You want
something that has a low fiddle/tinker factor and high utility (larger
cutting areas). Like Dave says they come in lots of formats. 3020, 3040,
6040, 6090 (that' cm, so a 6040's like the Artengine/Library laser but is

I think Richard was just referring to the mechanical side. I think the
chassis alone was 1100US. But that's still economically sound... Yeah,
there were a few more parts after that. The stuff you mentioned and of
course other odds and ends like motor mounts, stepper couplers, wire and
power supplies 'n stuff. And the controller pc (one was donated but I wound
up with one of my own with mach3), I think I paid 230 for the mach3
licence... probably other stuff I'm not thinking about.. oh, and I drank a
bottle of rum while doing some of the assembly...

Yeah, these cheap Chinese machines are useful and affordable. Lasers are
getting there too but is still a bit messier (the more affordable ones are
very small cutting area and have messy water plumbing). And when they fail
it's a lot more spooky to figure out what's up. Not that they're not great
because they are. I think anybody serious needs both since they both are
very useful.

I just figured out the other day that my first CNC is now five years old.
Mine was purchased far enough back that the Chinese electrical was a bit
iffy. In my case, I wound up replacing with a four axis Xylotex. That cost
around 500 (the kit, new motor couplers (imperial to metric), motor mounts,
wires 'n stuff). In retrospect that was a good move anyway as the Xylotex
are pretty sturdy. That all happened right at the beginning in fact the
initial electrical was DOA. Michael Grant helped me get it going but in the
end the electrical had a lot of issues so the Xylotex sure solved that.
It's run like a charm since. Even with that it was a cool deal. My supplier
sent me parts to repair the electrical so in theory I have that as a spare
electrical for a 6040 (motors with metric shafts)....

Since there there's been the following maintenance over the five years:
-spindal motor fell apart. This repair was less than five bucks. I got some
threaded rod at Ottawa Fastener and replaced the longitudinal bolts holding
the motor together.
-just the other day on of the bearings on the long ballscrew went. That was
less than 5. This wasn't wear. A tension was set a little off (I think) and
the bearing interacted with a neighbouring part and it's metal cover got
pushed into the balls and consumed.
-replace spindle brushes. This was free as it came with extra brushes. I
guess I gotta order some of those.

I should mention that I've used that machine a fair amount. I'm not
expecting anything to go for a while, probably a set of brushes again and
the next set after that I'll probably debate replacing spindle bearings or
upgrading the spindle to a brushless. But there's no sign of runout on the
spindle now.

I should mention you can buy these things turn key. The CNC613 was
purchased as a custom machine since I already have two drawers full of
steppers, controllers, power supplies and other stuff from cancelled and
unfinished projects. So my punishment for buying so much junk was that I'd
have to assemble a machine. But I got a lot of support and help so it came
together okay.

At the rate we're going there are already a couple of people that have
purchased machines in this class that are pleased with them (Adrian,
Chris)... And there're a few people who are almost ready to buy as they've
been practicing on the CNC613 and are learning about what they need (and
don't need)... people like Doug, Dave and a few other's that have been

Darcy Whyte

Art+ inventorArtist.com <http://inventorartist.com/> | Aviation
Contact: darcy at inventorArtist.com | 613-563-3634 by appointment (no text)

On Fri, Jan 8, 2016 at 4:20 PM, Dave Hunt <dave at huntgang.com> wrote:

> I don't like my original Shapeoko for a few reasons.  1) lot's of backlash
> as it is belt driven, 2) it ran a dremel and not a real spindle, 3) the
> GRBL Controller was garbage.  4) wouldn't even think of cutting any metal
> on it... Anyone want to buy it?  ;)
> Darcy could clarify but the CNC at MSN was $1,000 for just the frame.  He
> also purchased a brush less spindle with Collet and already had the
> steppers and the controllers.
> I think that they are asking too much for this mill in question and for
> the reasons mentioned re-kistarter campaigns I wouldn't buy one.  I'd look
> at the chineese machines like 3020, 6040 or larger 6090.  These are
> relatively proven machines and are great for cutting woods and mild
> steel/aluminum etc.  In fact I would love to move into a 6090.
> Dave
> On Fri, Jan 8, 2016 at 2:22 PM, Richard Sloan <themindfactory at gmail.com>
> wrote:
>> Should be there Sunday if you want to <http://drop.in>drop in 1pm
>> wow. that sounds amazing!
>> Cheers,
>> Henri Kuschkowitz
>> On January 8, 2016 at 2:13:26 PM, Richard Sloan (themindfactory at gmail.com)
>> wrote:
>> I do agree NOT to buy unproven CNC of any form!!!!
>> MSN unit was by lt with all Chinese parts but we knew what we were doing
>> and it turn out very nice! About 1000 bucks but all top notch parts 6040
>> On Jan 8, 2016 2:10 PM, "Tom Burns" <tom.i.burns at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> I've been tweaking mine for some months, but I'd admit I've run it
>>> pretty lightly thus far.
>>> I need to get to makerspace north sometime soon!
>>> On Fri, Jan 8, 2016 at 2:08 PM, Richard Sloan <themindfactory at gmail.com>
>>> wrote:
>>>> Interesting I used a shapeoko 1 and it was garbage, it was Dave hunts
>>>> and he will also atest, not good :-( checkout the cnc that Darcy and others
>>>> put together at maker space North it work very nicely!
>>>> On Jan 8, 2016 12:19 PM, "Tom Burns" <tom.i.burns at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>> I'm an owner of two 3d printing kickstarters which are months/years
>>>>> late to ship (genesis uno, peachy printer), and the owner of a CNC
>>>>> kickstarter that took drastically longer to ship a drastically inferior
>>>>> product (mydiycnc, garbage).
>>>>>  I'd definitely recommend choosing a cnc from a proven community that
>>>>> already exists, like the inventables shapeoko, x-carve, carvey, or the
>>>>> openbuilds OX.
>>>>> (I now own a shapeoko 1 which I am happy with)
>>>>> On Fri, Jan 8, 2016 at 11:44 AM, Henri Kuschkowitz <
>>>>> henri.kuschkowitz at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>> Hey gang,
>>>>>> Happy new year!
>>>>>> Anyone seen this yet and can give me some insight if this is
>>>>>> something worth considering?
>>>>>> https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1029697729/evo-one-desktop-cnc-mill-made-for-anyone?ref=video
>>>>>> Cheers,
>>>>>> Henri Kuschkowitz
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