Entry Level DIY CNC TDKU I





Introduction: Entry Level DIY CNC TDKU I

After finish a project in IT job I was wondering what to do to use my skills and knowledge to learn and share how to design, build and show something useful. As the DIY and Maker culture is growing fast I decided to create a CNC machine because once we understanding how it works we can apply the knowledge to other machines like 3D printer, Laser cutter, etc.

I divided the construction into 4 steps called:

  1. Y-Axis
  2. X-Axis
  3. Z-Axis
  4. Motor base
  5. Electro/Electronics

General information:

Dimensions: 1075,5x1075,5x785,7mm (with Nema 23 10Kgf step motors)

Structure: 20mm thick MDF and flat-head wood screws. I recommend waterproofing the wood after cutting to try to avoid changes in dimensions and gaps in the connections.

Trail: 5/8" x 1/8" thick steel angle bar mounted over the MDF and fixed by round-pan head wood screws.

Moving system: bearings with M8 bolt, washers, and nuts.

Motor: Step-motor Nema 23 10Kgf.

Electronics: Arduino Uno R3, CNC Shield V3 Reprap, drives DRV8825 and 24V/5A power supply.

Software: Arduino IDE, GRBL library, bCNC

Design software: Sketchup Pro 2017, Inkscape, Makercam.com, SketchUcam

Step 1: Y-Axis

Y-Axis steps:

  1. MDF structure.
  2. Left and right rails.
  3. Long screws and bearings for the Axis.


  1. The rails need to be very parallel.
  2. The nut for the axis need to be set without gap.

Step 2: X-Axis


  1. cut and drill the holes in the both sides.
  2. Bearing Set. You can find in the pictures the way that I used to calculate the distance between the rails to avoid gap in the bearings.
  3. M10 Nut Set.
  4. rails follow the same steps described in the Y-Axis .

Step 3: Z-Axis


  1. Cut and drill the holes.
  2. Install the rails.
  3. Bearing Set. You can find in the pictures the way that I used to calculate the distance between the rails to avoid gap in the bearings.

  4. M10 Nut Set for X-Axis and Z-Axis.

Step 4: Motor Base

The support for the Step motor was made with 3 pieces of MDF 15mm and 6mm thick. The construction is very straight forward and you can find the materials and dimensions in the PDF files attached.

Step 5: Electro/electronics


  1. Install the GRBL library into the Arduino (https://github.com/grbl/grbl).
  2. Install bCNC (https://github.com/vlachoudis/bCNC).
  3. DRV8825 current adjustment (https://www.pololu.com/blog/484/video-setting-the-current-limit-on-pololu-stepper-motor-driver-carriers).
  4. Install the wires for the motors.
  5. Install the micro switches.

Step 6: Test

Here you can check the cnc working.



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    Can it cut the wood ???

    Hello Rodmaru,
    Tks for share your project, it's really impressive.
    I'll also try to build it.
    Obrigado mano!

    Very cool man, I am looking to do something similar. What power supply did you use for the steppers? I am new to this so any advice / direction is appreciated. Cheers!

    2 replies

    Hi, Thank you. I used a 110V/220V AC to DC 24V 5A 120W Switch Power Supply Driver. Cheers

    Ok I am trying to buy one of these. I hooked up my driver + stepper + arduino to a breadboard for testing and I used two 9V batteries in series to try and test it but it didn't work, not even made a sound. I know using 9V batteries isn't good cause they won't last long but I figured it would at least work for testing, think something is wrong with my wiring or just test with a real power supply?

    hi sir!! this is a very good project, but I am confused as to how to attach the cables to the motor to arduino and CNC shield? in the tutorial you there is no discussion about the wiring diagram, I am a beginner and want to learn. can you help me?

    4 replies

    Hi epratama2, thank you. Sure, I just uploaded 2 pictures to show the connection I made in my case. I am using a 6 wires step motor and I using 2 motors for the Y-Axis, then I set the CNC shield to duplicate that as you can see in the picture.

    ok thank you sir, I consent to you to make this project as my final project. thank you has to share the knowledge with me ..

    yes sir ... thank you for answering my questions. I will make your project for my final assignment. hopefully this will work. Thank you for sharing your knowledge with me....

    Very nice! Also very good videos that show the construction part.

    Did you do some measurement how wel the repetitiveness is? Like can it do the same pattern within 0.5mm?

    1 reply

    Thank you for your comment. I did this only with a pen and worked fine. I will do the same with the router and l will update here and my website with the results.

    Hi Troy, Thank you!
    I appreciate your messages!
    All project took 8 months, but the videos that I showing how I built I spent around 4 days. Was a long journey where I could learn many things, especially how to explain with pictures important steps in the process.