Cheap CNC Router small version

by nic6911, published

Cheap CNC Router small version by nic6911 Jan 10, 2013

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Smaller version of my previously uploaded cheap CNC



42 608zz bearings

16mm MDF

12 1½" U-bolts (see picture)

1½m M8 threaded rod

M8x16 bolts

M8 spacers

M6x50 bolts

M6 spacers

Software used for running the machine:


Linux EMC2

CAM program used:


Videos of the machine in action:



The BOM, pictures and instructions is a work in progress!

The machine was designed and made for about two years ago, and I did not make a BOM back then.

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oi amigo como vai nossa adorei sua maquina ficou otima estou tentando construir uma com eletronica da impressora 3d sabe se fica boa ? se é possivel ? vc é do brasil ? de sp ou q lugar como posso ter seu contato pra trocar ideias pegar umas dicas com vc ?

Sorry, I only do Danish, English and German - not Portuguese :)

how much did this cost in total (approximately)?

Hi. I can't really remember. But I would estimate it to around 1500 to 2000 DKK which is equivalent to about 200 to 300 USD. But I guess the nema 23 steppers could be switched for nema17 to save some money and get almost the same performance.

What controller did you use?

Hi. For this particular CNC I used a cheap chinese board with parallel port from ebay. It was about 50$ with integrated drivers. But I would recommend to use a better controller.
For my next CNC I have made a DIY board (http://www.planet-cnc.com/index.php?page=diy)http://www.planet-cnc.com/inde.... This is a breakoutboard with USB support. It will also require a driver for each stepper.
For another low cost CNC I have used a GRBL type of controller. This is just an arduino uno with a shield on top. On the shield there are a couple of drivers to run the steppers. The arduino is a cheap solution and also gives USB support instead of the outdated parallel port.

So for a low cost machine like this I would recommend an arduino with shield keeping the cost of the machine down. (http://blog.protoneer.co.nz/arduino-cnc-shield/#Firmware)http://blog.protoneer.co.nz/ar...

Results look great! i'm build one like it, wish i had found this one first! What bit is that and where did you get it? I have 3 dremils but i also have a small Sears Router and a Rotozip any recommendation on which to use on a machine this size? Do you think a machine like this can support a small router?
Thanks for info Choc

Hi. Thank's!
I used a small PCB milling bit found on ebay for the cut on the video. For this size machine I would recommend a dremel size spindle, like the one I use. A bigger spindle = heavier gantry which is not preferable. But I have not tried with a bigger spindle, simply because it wasn't necessary for the materials this machine was built to mill...

NEMA23 motors??

Yes it is nema23 motors. The BOM is a work in progress, but all the things are the same as used for the other cheap cnc i have uploaded. And the BOM for that is more complete at the moment. The only difference is the size of the machine.

Nice little machine :-) how is the dremel working for you? Because the mill we have with a dremel has a wobble because dremels have their spindel placed in rubber, so it can wobble. Making it unable to use it for PCB milling.

I haven't done PCB milling, so I don't know. But a dremel may not be the best choice for a precision task like PCB milling. On the machine I use now I have a Kress 800FME which only has an outrun off 0.079mm 40mm from the collet.

Thanks for the tip, doesn't look that expensive and still got the right specs.

This machine reminds me very much of a swedish made machine called the "lillasyster". Nice work on the design.

Hi, just googled that machine, and yes they look almost the same! My machine is not a derivative though, Have never seen that machine before now, but I must admit that mine looks quite a bit like it.

What software do you use to drive your CNCs?


EMC2 for linux or Mach3 for windows. CAM software i use is Lazycam.