How To Build A CNC Router | Step By Step Guide

Building A CNC Mill | How To Make A CNC Router | Building Your Own CNC Milling Machine | Building CNC Mill | How To Build A CNC Router From The Scratch

Do you have a plan of building a new CNC machine? Are you a hobbyist of CNC plasma tables and planning to build a new CNC machine for your own purpose? Then this is the correct place you have landed on. CNCs are one of the most complex designs ever made by mankind.

It is used for different reasons for cutting woods, metals to provide them a certain shape. CNC routers are an essential part of any machine shop, but building one from scratch is a much more involved project. This guide will walk through all steps necessary for building a CNC Router.

The first step is planning out the overall design and making sure that you have all of the tools and parts needed to complete the CNC shark project files. When it comes time to purchase the individual parts, you can do this either online or at your local hardware store depending on what work is best for you.

Building Your Own CNC Milling Machine

Homemade CNC Wood Router

The CNC machine is an amazing machine. Allows cutting the jobs perfectly with precision. And it is quite similar to the FDM 3D printer but in this case, the end is replaced with the router. Comes in different sizes and shapes.

The price is affordable and starts at $200 and there is no upper limit. The carving bit rotates and it is present in the router. The machine can cut aluminum, controls all the different axes with precision. The 3D printer plays a vital role in building a CNC Router.

CNC Router Making

How To Build A CNC Router?


CNC Design Choices

CNC Router Parts
CNC Design Choices
CNC Design Choices

First, you need to decide the budget of the project, the sizes, and the materials you want to cut. The budget should be the main limiting factor. The engraving machine may cost $200. One needs to start by taking the proper decision.

The small CNC mill for steel can cost up to $200. The wood and aluminum may carve device start from $600. The expensive machines can easily carve the aluminum with huge work areas up to $1,000 for building. While building a CNC Router one may have a lot of options and it is not necessary to come with proper designs.

OpenBuild is an amazing resource to help to find open-source CNC machine designs. It is a very famous open source with various tutorials on the online platform such as Youtube and the parts can be bought online. The proper building of a CNC Router is really tough work and one should be an experienced maker before starting.

If you are building on your own then there are a lot of things that you should keep under consideration. At first, a solid model is required before building. Then we recommend using the home design 3D software for drawing the designs. It works and allows troubleshooting when something doesn’t work.

The rigidness of the full design is important and can determine the ability and the surface finish that the router creates. The material of the CNC router is an important consideration. The popular options that work for most of the designs are aluminum extrusion.

The aluminum extrusion is a popular choice for sturdy 3D printers and CNC. The sizes also make it great for sharing the designs. It can be used to bolt pieces onto the aluminum extrusion frames.


CNC Frame Types

Homemade CNC Parts

The table designs have a large stationary bed, and all three axes move along rails over it.
The Mill designs have a flower bed that moves in one or two confines and the router moves on the remaining axis.

Again, having access to a 3D printer is largely recommended, but a CNC router can be made without one. To that end, utmost OpenBuilds designs will have 3D published corridor and STL lines that you can 3D print.

The table style is used for nearly all CNC machines with large working areas – that is, lesser than 300 x 300 mm. This style of design allows for rigid construction across a large area.

All three axes are connected and move together across the entire working area. This design is the one to choose if you have an advanced budget (over $400) and want to produce a large, rigid CNC router.

The “shop” style is a good idea when you have a lower working area. This design has the bed of the machine moving in one or two confines. Its lower size means it’s easier to move the bed of the machine. This style, with a bed of lower than 300 x 300 mm, is generally used in cheaper and lower CNC routers that vend for $400 or lower.


CNC Electronics Parts

Home Built CNC

Anyhow of the design and style of your machine, you’ll need the same range of electronics for your CNC router a CNC regulator, stepper motors and motorists, a router, and a powerful force.

Stepper motors are what drive the stir in a CNC router. They directly turn supereminent screws or timing belt pulleys to move each axis with veritably high perfection. Motors come in numerous sizes which are generally denoted by NEMA and a number.

For illustration, a NEMA 17 motor is 1.7 elevation square and common size for 3D printing work. This size is also used on lower CNC routers. The CNC regulator is how the router connects to your computer and runs the G- law commands.

Some CNC regulators have erected-in stepper motor motorists and some don’t. The Arduino CNC guard V3 is a popular open-source CNC regulator with modular stepper motor motorists that can be changed.

This guard entrapments into an Arduino CNC UNO controller and is easy to set up with the open source GRBL firmware. Utmost regulators will bear a computer to shoot its commands using CNC software. The router for your machine can range from small 12 V DC motors to multiple power woodworking routers. This choice will depend on the severity and size of the CNC router you’ll be erecting.

A rotary tool is a great in-between for lower CNC machines that still bear a strong router. The final piece of electronics to consider is the power force. This will depend on your choice of the router and the power draw of your stepper motors. The router will probably have a voltage and watt standing, so it’ll be easy to choose a suitable power force. CNC regulator and stepper motor kit controller generally work with 12-24 V DC power inventories.


Axes Of CNC

CNC Important Parts
Axes Of CNC
Axes Of CNC

A normal CNC router has three degrees of freedom, meaning it can move along three axes. To strictly drive this stir, direct selectors (pictured over) are used and supported by direct comportments.

Each axis must move in one dimension with veritably little play or counterreaction. The strongest and most effective direct selector is a ball screw connected to a stepper motor. Specialized ball comportments can be moved in one dimension veritably precisely.

A cheaper option is supereminent screws, which are trapezoidal threaded screws, that move a technical nut in one dimension. Lead screws are veritably generally used in 3D printers components.

The other popular option is using timing belts and stepper motors with pulleys. Linear comportments are used to support the axes, with at least one direct bearing running parallel to the selector. Linear comportments generally allow low disunion movement on an indirect rail.

They’re fairly cheap and used in utmost lower-end machines. Linear rails are a further decoration option that uses technical comportments on flat companion rails. By mounting three of these axes vertically to each other, a CNC machine can move in 3- confines.

As mentioned ahead, table-style CNC machines have all three axes connected and moving together. For shop-style machines, one or two of the axes move the table, and the other move the router.



Router Parts

The bed of the machine is the fact that the router will work on. The bed of the machine should allow material to be clamped down fluently and securely. Numerous people conclude using MDF ( medium- viscosity fibreboard) as it won’t break your router bits should the machine be cut into the bed, and it’s fluently interchangeable. Popular machines use holes or places in the bed to allow for clamps to be fitted and used throughout the bed.


CNC Router


One could use a spare DC motor, woodworking router, or a rotary tool depending on the slice needs. For stronger machines that can cut tougher accouterments like aluminum, a DeWalt DP611 is a great router. For slightly weaker machines, a DeWalt DW660 is still an important enough rotary tool (at about half the price of the DP611) that can handle aluminum fluently.

The Mount that you choose is rigid as possible to exclude any redundant movement in the machine, which could ruin the finish of the cuts. It’s also veritably important to match the slice bits to the material and RPM of the router.

Note that one should always be careful the first time you use a bit. If anyone wants to start with a slow-speed cut to test the machine and bit. However, one will reduce the speed and depth of the cut, If the machine sounds like it’s floundering.


CNC X-Axis

Diy CNC Router Kit

The X-axis consists of an introductory frame, made out of 4 pieces of 30/60 aluminum extrusions and two 15 mm thick end-plates. There are two 6.8 mm holes at the end of the extrusions.

We used an essence valve to produce an M8 thread on the inwards of the holes. After that, we precisely laid out the positions for the holes on the end-plates. We actually clamped both plates together while drilling, to make sure that the holes would line up on both ends.

We also drilled four holes in the middle of each plate to mount the bearing blocks. Drilled four redundant holes in one of the side plates, to attach the motor mount.


Gantry Side Plates

Diy CNC Router For Aluminum

The gantry side plates are nearly identical. The only difference is that one of them has four redundant holes for attaching the motor mount. The whole gantry is made out of 15 mm thick aluminum plates.

Drilling the holes in the side plates, was relatively simple. Although we had to work veritably precisely. To get the holes in exactly the right spot, we precisely marked their locales, also we used a center punch, to produce a little divot.

Also, we went over to the drill press and used a center drill to produce a hole that guides the factual drill bit. For the larger holes, we used a lower size drill bit first before using the final size drill bit.


Gantry Assembling

CNC Router Plans Free
Gantry Assembling
Gantry Assembling

The rest of the gantry is made the same way as the side plates. The most delicate part was getting the direct rails lined uprightly. The direct rails had to line up with the edge of the plate.

When marking the exact hole locales, we clamped two pieces of aluminum biographies to the sides of the plate to line up the rails. Once we had marked the hole locales, we drilled and tapped them with an M5 thread.

When attaching the rails to the gantry, you have to make sure that the distance between the rails over the entire length is fully indeed (the rails must be resemblant).


CNC Y-Axis Carriage

Hobby CNC Router Parts

The Y-axis carriage consists of one plate with 8 direct comportments attached to it. Drilling the holes was enough straightforward, but again it had to be veritably precise. Both the direct comportments for the Y-axis and the Z-axis get attached to this plate.

Because the compartments are so close together, indeed the fewest misalignment causes it to jam. We made the holes only 0.2 mm large, but we had to drill them out to 0.5 mm to align the comportments rightly.

We had to do a bit of tweaking to get the carriage to slide fluently from one side to the other. Both the rails and the comportments demanded to be acclimated. We used high-quality digital calipers to align them as well as possible.


CNC Z-Axis

CNC Router Kit 4×8 Parts

The direct rails of the Z-axis get attached to the moving part of the Z-axis assembly. The rails demanded to be neutralized many millimeters from the edge of the plate. We used the same system as we did for the Y-axis, to align them.

We planted two pieces of plastic, of just the right consistency, which we could use as spacers. We knew the edges of the aluminum plate were resemblant, so we clamped two pieces of aluminum to the edge of the plate and added the pieces of plastic to space the rails out from the edge.

Once we had marked the hole locales, we just drilled and tapped them again. Make sure that you mark where the pieces go so that the holes still line up when you put everything back together.


Timing Belts And Pulleys

CNC Router Build Parts

We didn’t want the motors to be sticking out of the machine. Because this would increase the overall size of the machine by about 15 cm on each axis. Typically you would mount the motors on the outside of the machine using a special motor mount or standoffs.

This way you can couple the motors directly to the ball screws with a flexible coupler of some kind. This is how we did it on the first rustic prototype machine we erected. For utmost people, this will presumably work out just okay.

But what we plant was, that because the machine was placed in a veritably small shop, the motors would really get in the way. Because they were sticking out by nearly 20 cm ( motor standoffs) we relatively constantly would impinge against them.

That’s why we placed the motors on the inside of the new machine. By doing this we couldn’t directly couple the motors to the ball screws, but we had to use a timing belt and pulleys.


Last but not least this guide will definitely help you. After creating and designing so many projects in the past, we faced many issues. We have gathered several experiences which we have shared with you all today.

What we have built, we have shared here and it will definitely draw your attention. You can make it on your own. We have failed many times after then we succeeded. We have worked on designs, frames, electronics sections, axes, beds, etc. Designed in such a way that it will cost you less, save your precious time, and so on.

GV Team
GV Team

We are a team of experts in many different industries. We often buy the products from the manufacturers, test and review them on our platform. GV Team consists of 50+ members, who are experts in different industries, such as Automobile, Fitness, Phones, 3D Printers and so on.. Do follow us on social media.

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