Good Hobby CNC Machine


I'm thinking seriously about getting a CNC.  Been browsing on Ebay.  Mostly these China made 3020 cnc machines are popping up, and they all seem to  be relatively well priced.  Just thought I'd get some opinions from members on any actual experience on these.  Also any recommendations on getting a hobby CNC machine in general would be greatly appreciated.  I'm planning on using the machine to make hub plates, motor mounts, etc.  I'd probably be milling aluminium and/or carbon fibre.



  1. (servo motors and controller)
  2. 3-axis Stepper Motor System based on DQ542MA, on Ebay
  3. 6-axis Stepper Motor System based on DQ542MA, on Ebay
  4. DC1 Servo Motor Controller, from Makerbot
  5. Servo Motor Encoder

05/26/2012:  After some discussion.  This blog is starting to look into building a CNC machine of our own.  Keep following to stay informed.  We're in the brainstorming stage at this point any input from users is welcomed.

05/27/2012: DIYDrones CNC Project group is created.  Let's move our activity to that group.

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  • Here's a motor encoder I found on Ebay ($125 each):

  • Ok Folks the group has been approved.  Please let's move our discussion over there.

  • Ok, I'm thinking that before this blog gets to over bloated, I should create a group, and move the discussion there.  So, I've created a group and sent in the request.  When it's approved, I'll add some discussion there, and close this blog.

  • I'd like to keep the communication open to all.  I will post summaries on the top of the blog. (I currently have a list of equipment under consideration)

  • Monroe, I have some training with 3D CAD (using mostly SolidWorks), what do you need done? I don't have much time in the coming week, but maybe I can do a few parts.

    I can also help Ellison with code. I'm still studying CS in school though so I might not be as quick as any of you, but I can probably lift *some* weight.

    Also, we should probably find a better means of communication than this comment section.

  • Monroe, the only cad skills I have is with Blender 3D.  That's how I designed my frames.

    But I do have this program call, "Creo Elements Direct Modeling Express", which does real CAD.  Post your drawings, and let me see what I can come up with, while learning to use that Creo program.

  • Wayne, great stuff on that servo motor link.  The specs say they operate at 30V.  How are they for milling aluminum, and harder materials?

  • 100KM

    here is my home made cnc machine


    i used an old truck bumper some .5 inch cold roled square steel , various angle iron and some acme lead screws and nuts .and rollerskate bearings for the slides running servos from  and mach3 on a computer . i get 80 ipm and servo encoders ensure no missed steps . i put the whole thing together for ~ $1300 . i can get about .005 accuracy while cutting wood . i would be more then happy to get more close ups of it and share the plans if your interested . i get 42 x 24 x 4 travel .

  • Well, if we do a purely 3D printer only, we won't need more than NEMA17 steppers and only need 3 axis.

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