Introduction: DIY CNC & Constructing an Affordable CNC Kit

I have always dreamed of having a CNC and window shopped all the time on the internet. Finally, I discovered Instructables and made my own to share with others. Ninety percent of my parts were acquired from junk or unused stuff. It doesn't look pretty but it works. The first CNC was posted on "I Made It" photo contest. I took that apart to improve on my first design and I hope it helps other people. This particular CNC I believe is the easiest and cheapest way people can do it themselves.

Domo*pes (Arduino Powered Stepper Motor Board.)Preliminary test Before pcb board house.

Domo*pes  (Arduino Powered Stepper Motor Board)

Video of CNC cutting wood and birds-eye view of pen plotter

  • Laminated Particle Board or whatever smooth flat surface wood is easy for you to work with. I used an old bathroom cabinet.; @ hardware store
  • two feet of 1/2 inch PVC Pipe; $ @2 hardware store
  • four 1/2 inch PVC elbows; $4 @ hardware store
  • one foot of 1/4 inch PVC Pipe; $1 @ hardware store
  • six inches of 1/4 inch Copper Pipe; $ @ hardware store
  • two 1/4 inch x 20 threaded rod and three nuts to match; $10 @ hardware store
  • Copper Pipe Hangers; $2 @ hardware store
  • Gas Line Hose that snugly fits the threaded rod; $3/ft. @ auto parts store
  • handful of screws and nuts & bolts
  • 4 data staples: $1 @ hardware store
  • glue: Gorilla Glue, Super Glue
  • Craft Foam; $.50 @ Hobby Lobby
  • Saw to cut wood
  • Pipe Cutter
  • Screwdriver
  • Level
  • Tape Measure & Ruler
  • Pencil & Sharpie
  • Drill & Bits

Step 1: X Axis

You will construct the X axis with plywood. It's just a box.
You will need to cut out these pieces
two 8 1/4 x 2 1/2"
one 10 x 2 1/2"
one 8 x 1 1/2 x 1 1/2"
Construct like the picture above, making sure it's perfectly square.

Step 2: Glue the Bearings

Use Gorilla Glue on the corner. Gorilla Glue expands 3x it's size so apply sparingly. Clamp down the PVC pipe and let dry overnight.

Step 3: Z Axis

You need to cut out the following plywood pieces for the Z axis:
one 3 1/2 x 5"
one 4 1/4 x 3 1/2"
one 4 1/2 x 2 1/2"

Step 4: Base

Cut two PVC pipes to 8 1/4".
On the elbow there will be a crease, draw a pencil mark.
Measure the 3/4" from the top and you will have your center-point.
Drill holes in PVC elbow. The holes should be the same size of your shaft.

Step 5: Putting the Xaxis and Base Together

The table is 8 x 7 3/4". Screw the table to the PVC pipe. Make sure everything is square. Do not glue PVC pipes together just yet. Make sure everything slides freely. You may have to adjust it.

Step 6: Lead Screw

When installing lead screw, you have to notch out the PVC pipe.
Use pipe hanger to hold the nut.

Step 7: Y Axis

Installing the shaft in this step. There's no right or wrong way to do this. It's just the way I did it. As long as everything is square.   
  1. Measure from the base up, mark and drill. The first screw is a guide.
  2. Place shaft and mark the second drill hole.

Step 8: Shock Absorber & Mounts

  1. I cut and glued four pieces of craft foam to the bottom.
MakerBot Challenge

Participated in the
MakerBot Challenge