1. #1
    Jeff's Avatar
    Lives in Filey, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 2 Weeks Ago Has been a member for 0-1 years. Has a total post count of 19. Received thanks 2 times, giving thanks to others 3 times.
    Hi.

    I'm a semi retired electronics engineer and am looking for a cnc router for my small workshop but I'm finding the process of finding one very frustrating. I want to be able to cut furniture pieces from hardwood and ply and ideally need a machine that will take at least a 4' x 2' board, I'd love a bigger machine but my shop is just too small.

    I originally started looking at things like the x-carve and shapeoko but they are both smaller than I need and look a little flimsy. I then started looking at diy kits. CNC router parts and Routakit both do machines that are the right size and I'd almost taken the plunge and ordered a Routakit HD until I found out that shipping and vat/duty would put the price of the machine @ around 4500. This seems very expensive for a machine made from aluminium extrusions with timing belt drives so I thought I'd have a go at sourcing parts fo a similar machine from the UK.

    This is where it gets frustrating, I can easily find parts and even complete metalwork kits on US sites but there seems to be a complete dearth of suppliers in th UK, and those I have found, like CNC4you don't seem to be reviewed anywhere.

    My budget is around about 3k and I'd like a machine that can reliably and repeatably cut 25mm birch ply all day long but that can also do some more intricate 3d carving in hardwoods and possibly some inlay work in brass and acrylic.

    Is this possible for my budget or would I be better off investing in a decent scroll saw and router table?

  2. #2
    Neale's Avatar
    Lives in Plymouth, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 4 Hours Ago Has been a member for 4-5 years. Has a total post count of 964. Received thanks 162 times, giving thanks to others 5 times.
    Just as a data point, my 1500x750 router cost around 2500 in parts - and a couple of years to build, but I am a slow builder...

    A friend who runs a small business decided that a ready-built machine from China would be the way to go as he would rather earn money than build machines. He ended up with a 900x600 machine from Acctek. With water-cooled spindle, it ended up at about 3K delivered in UK. He saved some money by using a UK shipping agent to organise delivery, and probably had a better service as a result. The Acctek machine isn't perfect, it needed a bit of tweaking to set up, and there are quite a lot of rough edges. On the other hand, it is built with cast iron and steel rather than aluminium, has reasonable if not ideal electronics, and it was up and running, delivering production jobs, a couple of days after arriving in the workshop, earning its keep for around 6 months now. There may be other cheaper/better machines around, but this is one that I have seen and touched (I did the software setup and configuration) and it seems to deliver.

    Again, a data point rather than a solid recommendation, but you should be able to get something that suits your needs for about your budget.

    I now leave the thread open to all the "you'll do better if you build it!" advice - and I agree with that view, if your pleasure is in building at least as much as using! I had a lot of fun building, setting up, and now using my own machine.
    Last edited by Neale; 30-08-2017 at 10:02 AM.

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  4. #3
    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/CNC-Router...cAAOSwepJXaVoT

    Looks like this would do you a treat 30% over budget but looks a good machine unfortunately cannot see the linear rails so could be SBR I would doubt it's smooth rod but you would need to check that.

    West Yorkshire going to cost couple of hundred in delivery as well probably but I'd haggle and see if they'd do free delivery to transact outside of ebay which will save them 10%.
    Last edited by Desertboy; 01-09-2017 at 04:03 PM.

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