First of all click here !

thank you you helpen me a lot just by opening that instructable !! now enyoy my instructable.

this is my first instructable. i show you updates on my cnc machine which will cost about 200 euro's for still decent quality.
don't hate if you dont like this instructable, I'm just an 18 years old student from belguim sharing his ideas and creations whith other people. becous i think working together and sharing idea's will make better projects.

this is what the machine looks like right now. ill post new photos every time i advance building

i know my video's are not the best. i'm working hard to show you how everything works so it would be nice if you watched at least a peace of all of them to support my project.

for more visit my site:

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Step 1:

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the most important part of the cnc machine is the controller. if you dont understand how stepper motors work its verry hard to get everything working. Basicly, stepper motors are motors who take steps (mine are 1,8° per step) instead of turning around when you apply voltage. thi gives verry precise controll. my stepper driver i made with 3 easydrivers. 1 arduino . and some sparkfun stepper motors. all this comes from sparkfun. ATTENTION!! in the first video i have a arduino leonardo. this one will not work. you have to get a uno. this will make a bigg difference in the next step.

after you have your easydrivers and arduino connected you need to install a program grbl. on your arduino. this will understand g code and make the motors move.
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great instructions. This is exactly what I was looking for,

ahmeda3724 days ago
how to connect arduino with mach3
ahmeda3724 days ago
how to connect arduino with mach3
ahmeda3724 days ago
how to connect arduino with mach3
ahmeda3724 days ago
how to connect arduino with mach3
DavideS11 month ago

Can I have the size of cnc ?
The work area is an A3 ?

TimSwift1 month ago

What was the total cost?


How did you find the hex com port adress for mach3 ?

siemenwauters (author)  chris.kwakernaat3 months ago
I used grbl? This is in no way related to mach3 ?

w2hat program do you use to send grbl data to the arduino ?

the grbl arduino installation is just to translate to the steppers, what program you use to get it to there?

You'll need a control software. It can be as easy as sending the gcode from a serial terminal or you can use something like this :

GRBL firmware needs to be flashed to the Arduino. Don't worry, it is quite easy.
Makezines article on GRBL :
GRBL website :
github code etc :
How to FLASH :
thaipham1015 months ago

I have some stepper motors taken from my used printer, can I use it

also I use a Dremel 7700, which is 20,000 rpm, do you think I should slow the stepper motors down?

siemenwauters (author)  thaipham1015 months ago
If they are stepper motors you can deffinately use them. The dremel can be used with the right endmill. And i dont see why you should slow down your motors

thanks very much :D I'm waiting for the easydriver, I think I can use a lot of parts from my ripped printer

redwiz6 months ago

What are the rods that you used with the stepper motors and do you have a link to get them?

siemenwauters (author)  redwiz6 months ago
Its standard m8 Rod 1meter long you should be able tot get it in almost any hardware store
padbravo10 months ago

How this work is going?
any news about?

cliffyd11 months ago

it looks nice, just 1 question. I know I have to minimize weight distribution, my stepper motors are small (exactly the same size you are using) so just worried about it moving well. Does yours have any problems? BTW it does look nice, throw a nice paint job on "er and looks great!

siemenwauters (author)  cliffyd11 months ago
Sorry for the crappy answer . my smartphone auto correct is set tot Dutch.
cliffyd cliffyd11 months ago

what kind of alignment do you need to do? How much play is in the X Y Axis?

siemenwauters (author)  cliffyd11 months ago
Thuis machine was my crappy first version so it had stopped existing about 9 months ago. I currently am paining my new machine with precission lineair bearings. I never did align it but yiu have tot make dure your place your axisses exactly 90° or the machine wont be precise. And my nema 17 motors where surprisingly strong. Since they use threaded Rod your van put lots of weight on thema sonde your rails will Carey the weigt. Its like carrying a table VS pushing a table on wheels.
Soarex1 year ago

Hi friend,

I need some help to build a machine like that, please can you tell me your email for better comunication?

Hope you can help me.

Best regards,

Rafael Lopes

siemenwauters (author)  Soarex1 year ago

our email is

but for the quickest reaction send to

DIYPieter1 year ago


I'm new to arduino's but have a good knowledge of steppers, electronics etc.. Unfortunately I am not a software genius( thank goodness there are).

I have done a bit of homework and found out that there are ways to load G code into arduinos and make them run on it. I cant find anything that (A) actually works (B) installs correctly. If I am wrong can someone please put me on the right track.

PS: How do you program a Arduino Uno precisely as a cnc mill.

siemenwauters (author)  DIYPieter1 year ago

i'am currently working on a new video instructable so it is easier to understand. also i will upload pcb files so you can print and create the boards i have yourself. so have a little more patience and it will be allright :p

Thanks very much. Just let me know when your finished please.

jmsiefer1 year ago

I apologize for not understanding, however when you say "...after you have your easydrivers and arduino connected you need to install a program grbl. on your arduino." Is there a diagram for connecting the wires that you could share with me, as well as the steps for grbl? Do I need to install a sketch on my Uno first? Or does the grbl program automatically recognize the Uno? Sorry. I'm pretty new to using Arduino, and this is my second project. THANKS IN ADVANCE!!

siemenwauters (author)  jmsiefer1 year ago

sorry for the late answer. So the answer is:

the wiring can be found here

the program GRBL aint a computer software but a arduino hex file that you have to upload. the way to do thi can be easely found by googling it.

Thank you for the follow-up message. I think I figured it out. Here is what I found (copied via my Arduino forums post here: ).

"What I found was this link: It has you create a library for the Arduino Sketch application, and then load it in as an example. This takes all the guesswork out of creating/using the appropriate hex file.

I sent it to my Uno and it said that everything was uploaded correctly, however I won't know if it works or not until I have everything wired up correctly. What I plan on doing is ordering some of these guys from Aliexpress first: ... just in case I need to re-do the wiring a few times.

I had ordered some earlier, however I got the wrong pitch (the distance between pins), and they were much too large. These should be the right size for my EasyDriver boards though. Lesson learned (thankfully they're pretty cheap)."

gschreiber1 year ago
I am also looking for the grey box. I can't find it on sparkfun.
Can you provide a link to it?
Great project by the way!
Thank you,
siemenwauters (author)  gschreiber1 year ago

its a dutch website. hope this helps

Thank you!
That helps.
Richley1 year ago

questions :
1 ) how do you solder your stepper motors' cable with the midi cable ? (;wa... is that you ? )

2 ) how do you calibrate the X,Y and Z-axis ? ( their maximum length they can go, etc etc )

am new to Arduino and mechanisms, lack of information here and there :C

siemenwauters (author)  Richley1 year ago

soldering stepper motors to midi connectors is pretty straight forward. just buy loose midi (male and female) connectors and solder the corresponding wires to the corresonding pins. it has nothing to do with midi it just uses the connector.

the settings are stored in the eeprom of the arduino. you can change them with grbl controller. the maximum with etc aint set on my machine since it is 1m x1M so i never reach the ends anyway.

mailing to my website email would have got you a quicker response since i dont get the instructables messedges correctly;

alihureiby1 year ago
can it controll 4 axis stepper motor?

Yes and no. If you look up in the videos, you can see that there are three stepper drivers from Sparkfun (the three boards in Sparkfun red). This allows independent control for three axes, with a fairly severe limit on current. However, if you were to tie one controller to two stepper motors (for instance, to have a synchronized x-axis with two motors), you could do it, but you'd REALLY run into power problems. Getting another stepper driver would allow true 4-axis control, though you'd still have to watch the power capabilities of the boards.

The author said he used Easy Drivers (which can power up to 750mA/phase). Sparkfun also has Big Easy Drivers (which can power up to 2A/phase), which might be a good choice. Remember to keep any power draw well under these limits to maintain the life of your equipment.

You'd also have to modify the software, of course.

mkulesza1 year ago

My name is Michael, I live in Poland.
Very Lord please help!
You are able to help me though to the same understanding?
Namely, I want to control the arduino uno by mach 3 and use three drivers for the x, y, z
These are my drivers:

Any help is appreciated :)

From the top sorry for English and very please help.


Michał Kulesza

siemenwauters (author)  mkulesza1 year ago
Uhm wanting to controll an arduini with mach makes no sence :) you can output the mach 3 signals trough the parralel port and connect them directly to your drivers. This can be donebby using a breakout board or just the cable stripped on one side. The board will offer u usualy the easy terminal connectors and some onther functionality depending on the board
rwillemse1 year ago
Hi Siemen,
Terrific work! You inspired me: I have built my own Arduino-driven CNC-mill, based on the same principles, and gratefully using your research.
I wrote software for my mill, implementing the control and some routines (in the form of mathematical functions) for milling simple geometrical structures. Maybe it is of use for you. I share the software here:
Please share when you like it. It is my hope that more people will write functions for this packages...
Good luck and keep us posted!
Rijk Willemse
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