I’ve been thinking about how to upgrade the Z Axis on my ShapeOko for a while now and I finally started drawing up some stuff in Inventor. As a side note, it’s way cool to build assemblies in Inventor and create parts in-place and on-the-fly. So much fun.
The main reason for the Z axis upgrade is to increase rigidity. There is too much flex in my current setup.
I also want to use the new v2 design that flips the makerslide around, but I had issues with the travel limitations with the stock spindle mount plate. Additionally I want to move the motor off to the side with the new Z axis pulley drive. I also purchased a DWP611 router motor (you can buy just the motor on Amazon) and a Precise Bits collet set for it.
Last night I finalized a design. This design gives me about 3.75″ of Z travel with about 5.50″ of clearance under the assembly.
You will notice that I have moved the Z axis screw drive off to the side. It’s a tight fit, but it removes the spacers under the wheels which makes it a little more compact and hopefully removes some flex. It also requires replacing some of the fasteners with button head screws for clearance, but that’s not an issue.
There are new motor mounts and a dust shoe here also.
Here are a few more views.
I’m not sure that moving the Z drive screw off to the side is worth the trouble, but I think I’m going to try it out.