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My new Z axis sled

Hi all! I recently bought & built my first Maslow machine hoping to build some custom furniture to sell asap. I’m not new to woodworking, but since I’m pretty short on cash now I didn’t have money to put into a Ridgid router. Also since I’m into 3D printing I’m aware of better ways to turn rotational motion into linear motion than the way it’s been done with the Ridgid routers.

I was waiting to buy a linear sled kit from a company in China, but had a chance encounter with this little object at my local Harbor Freight & decided to make a go at it.

I’ve spent a few hours disassembling, and cutting things up to use only the top and middle sections to create the linear motion I need. I’ll be strapping a Porter Cable router I already had to it.

A few issues I can think of with this thing which will make it a little challenging.

Friction. I plan to sand everything as smooth as possible and get it tuned as much as possible to keep things less wobbly but still not so tight it can’t be moved. I have been able to get the motor mounted already and have it moving the sled but without any tightening yet.

Weight. I haven’t dropped this in a scale yet, but I estimate it’s about 5 pounds of steel. I know this will change the center of gravity a lot & I’ll have to move the ring out quite a bit to compensate for this. I also expect it will change chain sag & basically force me to re-calibrate completely.

Any thoughts on this? I wouldn’t be surprised to hear others have tried things like this. I really seriously contemplated taking some linear bearings off one of my 3D printers but that thing cost me about $3,000. They and a piece of aluminum would be a lot lighter, but this is what I’m working with for now.

it should work, you can probably reduce the brick weight a bit by having this on
there. the calibration process will handle the chain sag issue (as much as it
can be handled :slight_smile: )

let us know how it goes.

David Lang

https://www.aliexpress.com/wholesale?ltype=wholesale&d=y&CatId=0&SearchText=C+BEAM+Z+AXIS+150MM&trafficChannel=main&SortType=price_asc&groupsort=1&page=1

cbeam is what many people use. It’s pretty cheap. Actually cheaper to buy it one at a time then in bulk since 25% tarriffs kicked in on any thing over $700 in value.

Those cbeam sliders look awesome! I had found a few other options, but they were more expensive.

Like this one https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32808655274.html?spm=a2g0o.cart.0.0.53b33c00ZJV3Sx
It’s a very precise setup. but you get to pay for that.

I also have this one in my cart https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32912381231.html?spm=a2g0o.cart.0.0.53b33c00ZJV3Sx
It’s half the price, but still not as low as what you linked! But those Cbeam sliders are using aluminum extrusions, like my first 3D printer. From experience I know the wheels tend to eventually create problems.

I think long term I’ll go with one of the more expensive ones so I can have good bearings to ride on.

For now though I’ll forge ahead with the cross slide hack. Hopefully I can get it going today or tomorrow.