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@SuperCharger619, this is great discussion. As a fellow newb I quickly started asking the same thing (need to compile latest best practices). What I’m realising is that, as others have said above, there are so many variations since this is such a diy project (not much “default” about my set up, which doesn’t work very well yet!).

@madgrizzle has done an excellent job curating wiki content. I feel like that is the place to capture facts and best practices. Funny I was just chatting with him about starting a sled wiki.

What I think might be helpful is to create a topic about a specific part of the machine, communicate that you are trying to get community consensus on the subject and involve those that are knowledgeable (search the forums for that subject and you’ll start to see who the senior members are). Once there is agreement, the content could be moved to a wiki.


I really wish I had watched this video before starting. I wound up buying a Dewalt router that doesn’t have the screw adjustable height. Maybe I can still return it.


You may also want to look at a c-beam z-axis before you return it. There are a bunch of examples in the forums, and I for one, can say that the headaches I had with trying to get the rigid router base to work consistently were completely overcome by using a c-beam axis.


@Dean_Putney , I highly suggest that you consider @Keith 's suggestion. I’m in the Ridged z club. Haven’t taken the leap but need rid of some headaches. :grin:


I have both a Dewalt on a C beam and the stock Ridgid router that they suggest, both cut great. However, I will say that it takes a little more time and know how to get the C Beam to work. But once you do, I think it is a much better option. I have been able to get another motor and my C Beam is now probably 3-4 times as fast on the Z axis as my Ridgid. It is also more reliable, there are a couple of flaws with the Ridgid router that many people have found fixes for here on the forums. (here is a link) In the end I suggest you do what you are most comfortable with, if you can get the ridgid you can always turn that into a C Beam later, whatever you think is best for you. Hope this helps.


You can also get huge speed boost with the c-beam just using the stock motor since most of the lead screws have an 8mm lead as opposed to the 2.3mm lead of the rigid base. You can see my set-up and video of the speed here

That thread also contains links to all the parts I bought to make it.


This is great information, thanks all! I think I may try to keep the Dewalt and go with the C Beam approach. Especially if I can get/make a mount that allows me to easily remove the router from the sled and use it as a hand router again, this sounds promising.


Here is a link to a post I did awhile back about my long trek with a Dewalt and C-Beam. It might be helpful just to see, I thought I had the mounts somewhere on there but I may not have. I can share those on there too if you think they would be useful.


What is the significance of the gear reduction belt here? Is that relationship/speed something programmable into the CAM software?


are you asking about my setup? If so, I did choose the gears so as to increase the speed of the axis. The relationship is set up in GC as the lead of the z-axis. The lead is the distance traveled by the z-axis for each rotation of the motor, so by using a 2:1 ratio I effectively double to speed of the axis by that gearing alone. You could also try a 3:1 ratio and make it that much faster, which I think someone has tried.