Somewhere around 2012 it became my life’s goal to build a CNC machine. I thought to myself that there was nothing else within my grasp which could make more money for me than a CNC. I found a great (mediocre) diy guide (download at the bottom of the page) on building a home brew 2′ x 4′ machine, poured $1800 in to collecting the parts and got to building somewhere in 2013.
The two pictures above are all that remain from how far I got constructing the machine while still living on Staten Island. When I moved up state (having space to use this machine as one of my primary purposes in moving) I took apart what I had built and carried all of its pieces when I moved. Those CNC pieces then, waiting for a new home, sat until winter 2016.
With another impending move I decided that it was time to complete the singular goal I arrived up state New York with. So over four days I reassembled what I had built years earlier, carved and assembled the remaining fifteen pieces, wired the electronics and got that bitch moving.
My largest departure from the original design was using 4-start ACME screw threads over standard screw threads. These are the three threaded metal rods that are spun to move the machine in different directions. Acmes are much more expensive, but increase resolution and decrease kickback on the finished machine.
I am not detailing any of the construction in this post because it is based entirely off another person’s design which I have rehosted for download below. Though this particular design is considered out date, if you visit the creator’s website he sells many great parts and has all kinds of more modern CNCs.
All though I built this machine to do nothing other than collect dust, and it will never have the chance to actually carve anything, it was humbling to finish and operate a machine that I set out to create long before I had any deep skill in building. Please check out all of my nifty pics, gifs and videos. Hopefully they will lend some help if you ever set out to make your own CNC.