Mini Maslow using a dremel?

I was thinking of trying to take a whack at creating a Mini-Maslow that holds my dremel and uses smaller stepper motors to move my apparatus around. Has anyone done this yet? i imagine it would be much cheaper, especially for people who dont want to build anything big.

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Welcome to our group. You certainly could do this. I was looking at making a functional scale model. You would have to adapt for steppers. We don’t use them.

Thank you

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The basic concept exists in all sizes.

The biggest idea I heard of was someone wanting to paint houses with the Maslow.


Would there be any advantage to using stepper motors if im using a gearbox?

The Maslow hardware and software is designed around DC brush motors, it will not work with steppers…

Would not have to be tilted. You can have it flat on your desk. Then, yes, stepper is a big advantage.
Look for ‘dremel cnc’ , there are nice builds.
Are you planing to engrave a plywood sheet with a dremel? For sure you will not cut it.


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ACtually, I am looking to make an intricate stencil for spraypaint using super duper thin plywood. That veneer looking stuff. I want to use plasti dip on my yoga mat. the stencil would be two foot by 6 or 7 feet.


The lumber really doesn’t cost that much, so you wouldn’t save as much money as
you are thinking.

David Lang

the maslow hardware won’t drive steppers.

If you go with steppers, you won’t know if things move other than how you
expect, and without gearboxes things can move when power is off, which means you
would have to calibrate every time you turn it on.

For intricate stencils, silk screening might be a better option. You wouldn’t be able to use plastidip, but there are rubberized paints that can go through coarser silk screens.

i know the lumber is cheap. What I am looking to save money on is having to buy another 100 dollar tool and 150 dollar motors with a gearbox when I can use stuff i have around the house and get what I need.

well, it all depends on what stuff you have around the house :slight_smile:

If you don’t use the maslow motor controller, you will have to tinker with the
software. If you move from DC motors and encoders to steppers, you will need to
do a LOT of modification

There was someone who forked the codebase a year or so ago and paid someone to
make it able to drive steppers. They found that they still needed to use worm
gear gearboxes to make things work, simple planatary reduction wasn’t good
enough (it really needs the resistance to being back-driven)

David Lang

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oh, i have 2servos and 4steppers and six 5v dc motors out the wazoo… lol

what about using a gearbox setup like this?

that looks like it can be back-driven (if you turn the wheel, will the motor
turn), which makes it a bad choice.

Try googling polarbot for some stepper driven ideas. A number of wall drawing gadgets use the same kind of mechanism as the Maslow and often use steppers.

For your stencil have you considered printing it on multiple pages, taping it together, and using an xacto knife? For longer life tape the pattern to stencil material like mylar or stencil board. Use a stencil spray glue on the back to help prevent paint from wicking under the stencil

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Meh, instead of all that I just ended up saving up and bought my Maslow last night! :grin:


A local maker space was talking about people doing 10 minute presentations on their CNC’s and while I can bring in a little 4 axis 3040T CNC the Maslow CNC is another story. So I got to thinking about a mini Maslow CNC for demoing but thought it would be cool to use as much stock or similar electro-mechanicals as possible.

My 90 RPM versions of these geared motors might not work so well but finding 20 RPM versions and at 2 for $20 they should be perfect. I ordered two to try out.

For a mini Maslow CNC, I believe $22 for 2 20RPM 12V encodered geared motors should do the trick:


That’d be cool to see.

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I’m thinking about a 50% scale but 2’x4’ sheet working area might be too large for a desktop demo. Maybe a 30% scale is the sweet spot since 25% seems too small. Motors are ordered so probably a couple of weeks to figure out the structural part.

make the frame out of aluminum square tube and use tube nuts pounded into the ends will be light and much easier to setup using bolts

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