Assembly Step by Step

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These are the instructions for the SO1 and are here for historical reasons only.

If you are building an SO2, please see the instructions at http://docs.shapeoko.com/

If you haven't already done so, take a look at the Tools pages. Also, familiarizing yourself with the Parts will make assembly go easier.


Contents

V-Wheel Assemblies

When assembling the wheels, remember to place the precision washers (1mm thick) between the bearings. The precision washers are exactly 1mm thick and provide a surface for the races to contact, keeping everything tight.


Dual bearing v wheel.jpg

Smooth Idler Assemblies

When assembling the smooth idlers, remember to place the precision washers (1mm thick) between the bearings. The precision washers are exactly 1mm thick and provide a surface for the races to contact, keeping everything tight.

Smooth idler wheel.jpg


Y-Axis Idle (left carriage)

Highlight y axis left carriage.JPG

We'll start by building something simple. The Y-axis left carriage is a mount plate with four v-groove wheels.

Here is the Y-axis left carriage highlighted.

Parts
Y axis plate 1.JPG
  • (1) S4 - mount plate
  • (4) H1 - 5mm nuts
  • (12) H3 - 5mm washers
  • (4) M1 - dual bearing v wheels (Note: each of these dual-bearing V wheels consists of two bearings with a washer in between them, press-fit into a V wheel)
  • (2) M2 - Eccentric Spacer
  • (4) H8 - M5 x 30mm socket head cap screws
Step 1
Y axis plate 2.JPG
  • Notice how the upper corner holes are smaller (5mm), and the lower corner holes are larger (7.12mm).
    • When working with Makerslide, the larger holes always get an eccentric spacer.
  • In the upper holes, insert a screw through a washer insert from below.
  • In the lower holes, insert a screw through a washer and eccentric spacer, and insert from below.
Step 2
Y axis plate 3.JPG
  • Add a washer to each of the screws.
Step 3
Y axis plate 5.JPG
  • Add v wheel, washer, and 5mm nut.
Step 4
Close up eccentric spacer.JPG
  • Close up
    • Below the plate: screw, washer, eccentric spacer.
    • Above the plate: washer, v groove wheel, washer, nut.
Step 5
Close up no spacer.JPG
  • Close up
    • Below the plate: screw and washer.
    • Above the plate: washer, v-groove wheel, washer, nut.

Y-Axis Motor Mount (right carriage)

Highlight-y axis right carriage.JPG

Next, we'll build the Y-axis right carriage. It's a mirror image of the left carriage, but with the addition of a stepper motor, pulley, and smooth idlers. Here is the Y-axis right carriage highlighted.

Step 1
Y axis plate 5 rev.JPG
  • Begin the second carriage by assembling a mirror image of the first.
  • Note that the holes for the X-axis belt anchors are reversed from the left carriage so the Y axis will align properly.
  • If you take careful note of the pattern of holes in the subsequent pictures, you will get it right.
Parts
Y axis plate 6.JPG
  • (1) M6 - Pulley
  • (6) H4 - 5mm nuts
  • (10) H3 - 5mm washers
  • (2) M3 - smooth idler assemblies
  • (2) H1 - 0.125" spacers
  • (6) H8 - M5 x 30mm socket head cap screws
Step 2
Y axis plate 7.JPG
  • Install the smooth idlers next.
  • Start with a screw and washer inserted from below.
Step 3
Y axis plate 8.JPG
  • Add a 0.125" spacer to each screw.
  • The spacers can be difficult. I find that holding the spacers with my fingers and turning the socket head cap screw with an allen wrench works pretty well.
Step 4
Y axis plate 9.JPG
  • Add washer and smooth idler.
Step 5
Y axis plate 10.JPG
  • Add washer and nut.
Step 6
Y axis plate 11.JPG
  • The motor mounting socket head cap screw are inserted from the front (with a washer).
Step 7
Y axis plate 12.JPG
  • Secure the motor with a nut on each screw.
Step 8
Y axis plate 13.JPG
  • Install the pulley so it's flush with the end of the motor shaft. Secure with the set screws.
Step 9
Y axis plate 14.JPG
  • Completed y-axis plate.

Assemble the frame

Highlight assemble the frame.JPG

Next, we'll install the two y-axis plates on the Makerslide and attach the end plates. This is the basic frame of the ShapeOko. Here is the base frame highlighted.

Parts
Frame 1.JPG
  • Two plates previously assembled
  • (2) S1 - 375mm MakerSlide
  • (2) S5 - End plates
  • (8) H7 - M5 8mm socket head cap screws
  • (8) H3 - 5mm washers
Step 1
Frame 2.JPG
  • If you haven't already done so, tap the holes on both ends of both 375mm Makerslide.
  • Attach the end plate to the v-rail.
  • Notice the v-rail is to the outside.
  • Use a 5mm washer with each screw.
  • Tighten the screws just "finger tight".
Step 2
Frame 3.JPG
  • Attach the end plate to the second v-rail.
  • Use a 5mm washer with each screw.
Step 3
Frame 4.JPG
  • Spin the frame around so the attached end plate is in the back.
  • Slide the carriage without the motor onto the left rail.
  • The orientation of the eccentric spacers is important. If you marked the side of the spacer, be sure it's oriented away from the other wheel. This maximizes the distance between wheels and makes it easy to slide the plate onto the Makerslide.
Step 4
Frame 5.JPG
  • Slide the carriage with the motor onto the right rail.
Step 5
Frame 6.JPG
  • Attach the second end plate to the v-rails.
  • Use a 5mm washer with each screw.
  • Tighten the screws just "finger tight".

X-axis carriage

Highlight x axis and gantry.JPG

The x-axis uses the same mount plate as we used on the y-axis. It's assembled very similar to the y-axis, but with longer (55mm) socket head cap screws. Here is the X-axis and gantry highlighted.

Parts
X carriage 1.JPG
  • (1) S4 - Mount plate
  • (4) H9 - M5 x 55mm socket head cap screws
  • (6) H8 - M5 x 30mm socket head cap screw
  • (26) H3 - 5mm washers
  • (10) H4 - 5mm nuts
  • (4) M1 - Dual bearing v Wheel
  • (4) H2 - 0.75" spacer
  • (2) M3 - Smooth idler
  • (2) H1 - 0.125" spacer
  • (2) M2 - Eccentric Spacer
  • (1) E1 - Stepper motor
  • (1) M6 - Pulley
Step 1
X carriage 2.JPG
  • Start with the v wheels in the bottom holes.
  • From below the plate, insert a 55mm screw, a washer, and an eccentric spacer.
  • Above the plate, add a washer, v-groove wheel, washer, 0.75" spacer, washer, and a nut.
Step 2
X carriage 3.JPG
  • Close up
    • Below the plate: screw, washer, eccentric spacer.
    • Above the plate: washer, v groove wheel, washer, 0.75" spacer, washer, nut.
Step 3
X carriage 4.JPG
  • Add the v wheels in the top holes.
  • From below the plate, insert a 55mm screw with a washer.
  • Above the plate, add a washer, v-groove wheel, washer, 0.75" spacer, washer, and a nut.
Step 4
X carriage 5.JPG
  • Close up
    • Below the plate: screw and washer.
    • Above the plate: washer, v-groove wheel, washer, 0.75" spacer, washer, nut.
Step 5
X carriage 6.JPG
  • Attach the motor
    • From above the plate, insert a 30mm screw with a washer.
    • The motor attaches below the plate with a nut on each screw.
Step 6
X carriage 7.JPG
  • Attach the pulley with flush with the end of the motor shaft.
Step 7
X carriage 8.JPG
  • Attach the smooth idlers:
    • From below the plate, insert a 30mm screw with a washer.
    • Above the plate, add a 0.125" spacer, washer, smooth idler, washer, and a nut.

Z-axis motor assembly

Highlight z axis motor assembly.JPG

The Z-axis motor raises and lowers the cutting spindle. In this step, we'll build the z-axis motor assembly (which we'll attach to a z-axis carriage and x-axis carriage in the next couple of steps). Here is the Z-axis motor assembly highlighted.

Parts
Z axis 0.JPG
  • (1) H12 - Z-axis coupler
  • (1) E1 - Stepper motor
  • (1) S2 - 200mm MakerSlide
  • (1) H5 - 8mm threaded rod
  • (1) S6 - Z-axis plate
  • (3) H1 - 0.125" spacer
  • (6) H2 - 0.75" spacer
  • (3) H6 - M3 x 50mm socket head cap screw
  • (4) H10 - 8mm nut
  • (1) M7 - Z-axis bearing
  • (4) H13 - M5 x 16mm socket head cap screw
Step 1
Z axis 1.JPG
  • Slide the 5mm side of the z-axis coupler onto the motor shaft.
  • Don't slide the coupler all the way on. Leave slightly more than 1/4" depth on the 8mm side so you'll be able to attach the 8mm threaded rod to the z-axis coupler.
  • Tighten the set screw to secure the z-axis coupler to the motor shaft.
Step 2
Z axis 2.JPG
  • One thing to note when working with the threaded rod: Look at both ends of the rod.
    • If one end is cleaner than the other (i.e. doesn't have sharp edges, threads look nicely formed) use that end to thread through the delrin nut, and use the "messy" end to attach the coupler.
    • You may need to thread the 8mm nuts from the "good" end in order to do so.
    • By not using the "messy end" through the delrin nut, you'll prevent cutting into the threads and possibly damaging the nut.
    • If both ends are "messy" simply take a file and smooth one end out, trying to file away sharp edges or jagged threads.
  • Screw two 8mm nuts onto the threaded rod, 1/4" from the end of the rod.
  • Tighten the nuts against each other.
Step 3
Z axis 3.JPG
  • Insert the threaded rod into the z-axis coupler.
  • I find it helpful to you hold the motor in a small clamp.
  • Test-tighten the set screw on coupler to ensure that the threaded rod is tightly held. If so, loosen it again and continue with the assembly process.
  • If the tightened coupler slips slips on the threaded rod, add some thin shim (one layer of electrical tape has been found to work well) around the threaded rod, reinsert it into the coupler and try to tighten the set screw. If the threaded rod is held firmly, loosen the set screws and proceed with the assembly.
  • Either way, make sure that the set screws on the 8mm (threaded rod) side of the coupler are loose before proceeding.
Step 4
Z axis 4.JPG
  • Insert a z-axis bearing in the z-axis plate.

Note: There is only one plate and bearing. A previous design used two plates, but one works better.

Step 5
Z axis 5.JPG
  • Slide a z-axis plate onto the threaded rod with the bearing toward the motor.
Step 6
Z axis 6.JPG
  • Insert the M3 socket head cap screws through the z-axis plate.
  • Make sure that you do not put an M3 screw through the hole between the two larger M5 holes (if there is one) - use the other three instead.
  • The z-axis plate is separated from the motor with two 0.75" spacers and one 0.125" spacer.
Step 7
Z axis 7.JPG
  • Slide the stack of spacers onto the screw.
  • With one hand, lineup the spacers and screw.
  • Twist the socket head cap screw with your other hand until the threads grab the threaded hole in the motor.
  • Tighten finger-tight.
Step 8
Z axis 8.JPG
  • After getting all three M3 screws finger-tight, fully tighten all three with an allen wrench. Use the same method one would use to tighten a wheel onto a car; tighten each one a little at a time in a cross pattern.
  • Tighten the set-screw of the z-axis coupler so the threaded rod is securely connected.
Step 9
Z axis 9.JPG
  • If you haven't already done so, thread the holes on the 200mm Makerslide.
  • Attach the 200mm MakerSlide to the z-axis plate using two M5 x 16mm screws.
  • The V-grooves on the Makerslide should be closest to the threaded rod.

Z-axis carriage

Highlight-z axis carriage.JPG

The z-axis carriage is made from a "standard plate" from Makerslide. The carriage will hold the v-wheels which allow the 200mm Makerslide to ride up and down from the z-axis motor assembly we put together in the last step. Here is the Z-axis carriage highlighted.

Parts
Standard plate 1.JPG
  • (4) H8 - M5 x 30mm
  • (16) H3 - 5mm washer
  • (4) M1 - Dual bearing V wheel
  • (4) H1 - .125" spacer
  • (2) M2 - Eccentric spacer
  • (4) H4 - 5mm nuts
  • (1) S3 - Standard plate
  • (1) M8 - Z-axis delrin nut
  • (2) H7 - M5 x 8mm socket head cap screw
Step 1
Standard plate 2.JPG
  • Attach the delrin nut to the center of the standard plate with two M5 x 8mm screws.
  • Here is the delrin nut on one side of the standard plate.
  • Pay attention to the orientation- note that the pair of holes with the slightly larger (7.12mm) hole goes on the left - make sure that you have the orientation correct before you start adding the V-wheels.
Step 2
Standard plate 3 rev.JPG
  • Attach the delrin nut to the center of the standard plate with two M5 x 8mm screws.
  • Here is the opposite side of the standard plate showing the two screws.
Step 3
Standard plate 4.JPG
  • Notice there are 5mm holes, and 7.12mm holes.
  • Start with a 5mm hole.
  • Notice that the v-groove wheel goes on the same side as the delrin nut.
Step 4
Standard plate 5.JPG
  • On the M5 x 30mm screw, goes a washer, the v groove wheel, TWO washers, and TWO .125" spacers.
  • On the bottom side, add a washer and 5mm nut.
Step 5
Standard plate 6.JPG
  • Add another v groove wheel in the other 5mm hole.
Step 6
Standard plate 7.JPG
  • The 7.12mm holes will get an eccentric spacer instead of the .125" spacers.
Step 7
Standard plate 8.JPG
  • On the M5 x 30mm screw, goes a washer, the v groove wheel, TWO washers, and an eccentric spacer.
  • On the bottom side, add a washer and 5mm nut.
Step 8
Standard plate 9.JPG
  • Add another v-groove wheel in the other 7.12mm hole.

Attach the z-axis motor to z-axis carriage

Highlight-z axis motor and carriage.JPG

In this step, we attach the z-axis motor assembly to the z-axis carriage. Here are the Z-axis motor and z-axis carriage highlighted.

Parts
Z axis assembly 1.JPG
  • (1) previously assembled z-axis motor sub-assembly
  • (1) previously assembled z-axis carriage sub-assembly


Note: A previous design used two z-axis plates, but one works better. There is no need for a z-axis plate on the end away from the motor.

Step 1
Z axis assembly 3.JPG
  • Lineup the MakerSlide between the v groove wheels.
  • The threaded rod should be perfectly in line with the threaded hole in the delrin nut.
  • Note: Keep an eye on the delrin nut. If it's loose, you'll get weird results when running your machine as the looseness will cause backlash (see the Glossary). Also, make sure that the hole which the threaded rod is fed through is lined up with the threaded rod the best that it can be. The straighter these two connections are, the less wear you will experience on your delrin nut.
Step 2
Z axis assembly 4.JPG
  • Twisting the threaded rod will draw it through the delrin nut.
Step 3
Z axis assembly 5.JPG
  • I find that it's easy to use your thumb to spin the z-axis coupler (which is connected to the threaded rod).
Step 4
Z axis assembly 6.JPG
  • Continue twisting until the standard plate clears the end of the 200mm MakerSlide.

Attach z-axis carriage to x-axis carriage

Highlight attach z to x.JPG

In this step we'll connect the z-axis to the x-axis. Here is the Z-axis carriage and x-axis carriage highlighted.

Parts
Attach z to x 1.JPG

Previously completed sub-assemblies:

  • Z-axis motor / z-axis carriage
  • X-axis carriage


Additional parts:

  • (8) H3 - 5mm washers
Step 1
Attach z to x 1b.JPG
  • Remove the 5mm nut and washer from the ends of the M5 x 55mm screws (H9).
  • Add two additional washers on top of the 0.75" spacers.
  • The four holes on the z-axis standard plate will fit right over the screws.
Step 2
Attach z to x 2.JPG
  • Replace the washers and 5mm nuts.
Parts
Attach z to x 3.JPG

Previously completed sub-assemblies:

  • Z-axis motor / z-axis carriage / x-axis carriage
  • Frame
  • (4) H3 - 5mm washer
  • (4) H7 - M5 x 8mm socket head cap screws
Step 3
Attach z to x 4.JPG
  • Slide the 200mm Makerslide through the v-wheels on the x-axis carriage.
  • Note: If the back of the 6mm nuts are rubbing on the makerslide (you'll be able to feel or hear the rub as you slide the extrusion through the v-wheels), simply remove the standard plate (see step 1) and add an extra washer to the end of the 55mm screw. This will give the screw heads more clearance.
Step 4
Attach z to x 5.JPG
  • Use a washer and 8mm screw to connect the entire assembly between the y-axis carriages on the frame.

Spindle

Highlight spindle.JPG

The spindle is the cutting tool on the CNC machine. We attach the spindle to the z-axis with insertion nuts and brackets. Here the spindle is highlighted.

Parts
Spindle 0.JPG
  • Previously assembled z-axis
  • (1) T1 - Spindle
  • (1) T2 - Spindle mount (top)
  • (1) T3 - Spindle mount (bottom)
  • (4) H11 - Insertion nut
  • (4) H7 - M5 x 8mm socket head cap screw
Step 1
Spindle 1.JPG
  • I find it easier to remove the whole x-axis/z-axis assembly from the gantry to attach the spindle.
  • The slots along the z-axis MakerSlide will be used to mount the spindle.
Step 2
Spindle 2.JPG
  • Take a look at the end of the Makerslide.
  • It's likely that the slots will be blocked by a sliver of aluminum from when the Makerslide was cut.
  • Use a small screw driver or file to clean up the slot.
Step 3
Spindle 3.JPG
  • The slots should have clean corners so the insertion nuts can slide into the slot.
Step 4
Spindle 4.JPG
  • The insertion nuts slide into the slots.
  • Check to see that you've cleaned the slots sufficiently for the insertion nuts to fit into the slot.
Step 5
Spindle 4b.JPG
  • Use two M5 x 8mm socket head cap screw to loosely fasten the insertion nuts to the spindle mounts.
Step 6
Spindle 5.JPG
  • Slide both insertion nuts simultaneously into both slots.
  • The larger spindle mount goes on top of the z-axis.
Step 7
Spindle 6.JPG
  • Move the spindle mounts to a position they won't interfere with the operation of the spindle.
  • Tighten the M5 x 8mm socket head cap screws.
Step 8
Spindle 7.JPG
  • Tighten the nuts on the spindle mounts to hold the spindle firmly in place.
Step 9
Spindle 8.JPG
  • Reattach the x-axis/z-axis assembly to the gantry.
  • Adjust the placement of the spindle mounts as necessary.

Belts

Highlight belts.JPG

The CNC machine moves on the x-axis and y-axis by moving along the belts. The y-axis belt attaches to the frame. The x-axis belt attaches to the gantry. Here the belts are highlighted.

Parts
Belts 1.JPG
  • (1) M4 - Belting
  • (4) H13 - M5 x 16mm socket head cap screws
  • (4) H7 - M5 x 8mm socket head cap screws
  • (4) H3 - 5mm washers
  • (4) H4 - 5mm nuts
  • (4) M5 - Belt anchor
Step 1
Belts 2.JPG
  • Insert an M5 x 8mm screw with a washer through one hole of the belt anchor.
  • Loosely attach a 5mm nut.
Step 2
Belts 3.JPG
  • Remove the upper M5 x 8mm screw from the upper hole of the maker slide (motor side).
Step 3
Belts 4.JPG
  • Discard the M5 x 8mm screw.
  • Using an M5 x 16mm screw and the washer that was previously on the M5 x 8mm screw, attach the belt anchor to the Makerslide.
Step 4
Belts 5.JPG
  • Slide the belting behind the 5mm washer.
  • Tighten the 5mm nut to secure the belting.
Step 5
Belts 6.JPG
  • The belt passes over the smooth idler, under the pulley, and over the second smooth idler.
  • Attach the belt to the belt anchor on the other side the same way.
  • Repeat for the x-axis.
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