ClosetFab - CNC in (limited) Space

Budget CNC designed with minimal space in mind, with modular attachments planned for future versions.

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Working from home may seem like a dream to some, but what happens when you get burnt out with your job, and need a DIY project to spice things up a bit? You build a cnc from random bits! Here's my take on a low-budget CNC build.

The idea started when researching ways to build an edge-lit acrylic sign for the family business - I could order custom laser cut acrylic from a company, or design and mill them myself.  Since I started dabbling in electronics projects less than a few years ago with no prior knowledge, I though I would try a daunting project for someone with no engineering experience - a CNC Router.  I spent a lot of time lurking on the forums, scanning through the various builds with my low budget and small space in mind.  Nothing to be found under $500 and  able to fit in my limited size duplex.  So I made my own.  What follows is a massive repurposing of various parts to bring total cost so far of this project to less than $250.

  • Change to grbl and chilipeppr

    xobmo05/28/2017 at 17:46 0 comments

    After dealing with random dropouts and freezes with LinuxCnC I have ordered a grbl shield and changed over to chilipeppr. Seems to run a lot better but occasionally I have issues with run-out on my cheap trim router. All together however it is working and I am slowly making upgrades to it to improve accuracy and rigidity. Here's something I carved:

  • Project Pause

    xobmo08/01/2016 at 14:24 0 comments

    Well, limited space indeed. My significant other decided we needed the room in the outside closet, so I had to move the machine to her mom's. With that, came a little more space (it's a garage) and more trials and errors and upgrades too. I have changed from LinuxCNC to grbl on an Arduino clone. Still using DRV8825 drivers, but now I just lug my laptop over there and use Chilipeppr to drive the thing. I have changed the design a little using some new drawer slides I found at Lowe's. (Hardware store) More to follow including some design pics!

  • Troubleshooting missed steps

    xobmo07/24/2014 at 23:10 0 comments

    Well, I have run into a peculiar issue that needed to be addressed, and all of the things I have done so far in troubleshooting have not produced any fruitful results.  

    Description of the issue: 

    Every time I try to run the default code that comes up in the axis window, I get a few missed steps on the Y axis that ends up skewing the rest of the cut.  You can see it evidenced here: 

    The last 'C' in LinuxCNC is almost ALWAYS the problem, but sometimes it is the first C.  And another of a Harley Logo that I toolpathed using V-carve.  As it engraves the letters MOTOR the m turns out ok, but the O is pulled low, and I'd be lucky if the TOR stays together a little bit lower on the -Y direction.  Get my point?

    So first thing I am going to do at this point is reinstall the system.  This may be a latency issue that I can fix using the older version of Ubuntu - Hardy Heron 8.04.  And just manually update emc2 to LinuxCNC 2.6.  Will update the progress.

  • Video

    xobmo07/18/2014 at 02:39 0 comments

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