A CNC (computer numerical control) router is a unique type of cutting machine that mostly used for commercial purposes. Basically, it is a computer-controlled device that is a bit similar to the handheld router. The best thing is, you can cut or even precise a lot of different things with just this device, like woods, metals, aluminum, steels, plastics, glass, foams, etc.
So, you need a CNC router, but how? The entire market is loaded with the products that cost a fortune! Don’t worry. We’re actually here to teach you how to make a CNC router machine at home. For instance, you don’t have to pay a heap of the penny at all, as the homemade process is relatively cheap if you compare it with a readymade CNC router.
What you’ll need to make your Own CNC Machine?
Here, you need some core equipment to make your own CNC machine. These are as follows:
- Cutting tools
- Spacers, washers, screws, nuts, and bolts
- Guides and supports
- Power supply
- Processor/control board
- Stepper drivers
- Stepper shield
Note: A few machines use a PC.
Step by Step Guide of Making a Homemade CNC Router:
After collecting all the necessary pieces of equipment, it’s time to move on to the real action! We are providing the general steps to how to build a CNC router at home.
Step-1: Make a Design
The first duty is to make a simple design of your CNC router. Indeed, there are a couple of different choices out there. So, it will be a wise decision to make the design that you’ll like. For instance, you can take help from a designer to make it clear. Or else, you can create by own if you’ve already some basic ideas of making a design.
Step-2: Collect the Parts
Once you’ve accomplished the task of making design, you have to collect the necessary equipment (electrical as well as mechanical parts). We’ve listed it above as a guideline.
Step-3: Pick Out the Frame for Construction
The thing which holds the entire parts of a CNC machine is the frame. So, it should be firm enough. Make sure to pick out the hard material, and the best option will be aluminum for this case, whereas they ensure the ultimate durability. It increases the lifespan of the device as well.
Step-4: Affix the Gantry
Every CNC machine doesn’t include a gantry. However, we’ve added it with our CNC router, as a few popular devices have included it. It allows the tool to move along the Y-axis.
Besides, it can hold the tool in place on the upwards of the workspace. To reduce shaking, make sure to keep a balancing force on the gantry. The tools will be moved up and down by itself along the z-axis. It is necessary to give a better range of depth.
Step-5: Bring in the X-axis
By adding guide rails and bearings will help you to maintain the firmness of your CNC machine. Moreover, it allows your tool to move backward as well as forward along the X-axis.
Step-6: Time to drive it!
After adding those parts which help your CNC to move backward and forward, it is time to give your hands into those that make it moveable on the axis. Yes, we are talking about the drive system, which is made up of pulleys, spindles, motors, screws, bolts, nuts, etc.
Step-7: Add the Electronic Parts
You know, electronic parts are known as the ‘heart’ of the CNC machine. Putting it in the right direction is the core duty, as you can see. The main component is the motor, which really helps to drive the machining tool.
For instance, you have two different choices, these are stepper and servo motors. Also, you need to include breakout boards, drivers, PSU, and a processor is a must!
Step-8: Create the Linear Movement
The motor mainly helps to create a spinning movement. However, linear motion is required. A spindle plays the role to convert the rotational motion to linear motion. By this feature, the tool can move up and down with ease!
Step-9: Select the Controller
You’ve entered into the most necessary point. The prime function of the controller is to operate the entire CNC machine. A controller is a part which provides the signal given by a computer. As you can see, it acts as the brain of the whole system.
Step-10: Choose a Specific Software
Now, your machine is ready for operations. However, you have to set the specific software that can control your entire CNC machine. They use the G-code languages to control the whole movement, including its 3 axes (X-axis, Y-axis, and Z-axis).
Step-11: Attach the Machining Tool
There are a couple of machining tools available in the market. Among them, metal cutting tools are usually conventional. However, you may use plasma or laser cutting tools.
Step-12: Let’s Make Something!
After completing the whole process, you’re ready to make whatever you need for your own projects. You did the job successfully!
As you can see, the way of making a homemade CNC router is quite simple. Undoubtedly, you can find the best one from the market which has no lack of performance. But, you may have to pay around thousands of dollars to get the best one.
On the contrary, if you choose the homemade process, the overall cost will be a bit low, without compromising the performance. So, what are you going to select, the ball is in your court!