Estlcam cutting deeper and deeper

I started to cut 1.5mm thick carbon panel for a quad copter this morning. First cuts were perfect. But as the cutting continued they got deeper and deeper.
My first cut 1.48 mm buy the time I stopped the project it was almost 4mm deep into my base.

I have checked the table, and its fairly level. Its about 1/2mm off on Y and spot on X this is over a span of 300 mm.
My Z seems to be traveling nicely and does not bind when I manually control with Repetier. The only thing I can think of is I am doing something wrong with Estlcam.

I should also say as it cuts deeper and deeper, Z does not raise enough to clear the path that should not be cut.
I wasted a good piece of carbon…

Does any one have any ideas where I should start looking?

Are you using the printed z-coupler? Put a piece of waste wood on the machine and start a cut. Watch the stepper/coupler/all thread carefully - any slippage whatsoever on the z axis will cause the problem you describe.

Ryan will suggest missing steps on the z axis, which is totally possible, but I’ve had slippage problems twice - once with the printed coupler, and once with a metal coupler that wasn’t installed tight enough - so that’s my first thing to check.

Good luck!

I am using a metal coupler from the servo to threaded rod. It is defiantly not loose.

If you are positive the coupler isn’t slipping, try the same cut at a lower feedrate like 50% maybe 75% if it doesn’t happen it is time for another firmware update. I think I set the z axis accel a bit too high, this is becoming common especially in the 8mm threaded rod users.

I dropped the Z feed to 60mm/m and slowed the feed rate to 400mm/m. It seemed to be working better then I got a hiccup and ruined my backup fiberglass panel.

If I run the Gcode from a memory card would that help solve the cutting errors?


Something else has to be wrong that is super slow.

Are you sure nothing is hitting on the z axis. When powered off it moves smoothly and easily by hand? maybe take out or loosen your anti backlash spring.

I slowed Z movement way down thinking I would work the speed back up. It was set at 180mm/m. It seems to move easily by hand. I can’t see anything hitting. I had that problem once before where the DW660 was hitting. I will loosed the backlash spring and see what happens.


I have heard of bits pulling out just a little and cashing this issue if they are not tightened enough.

I had this happen on an early version of Estlcam and I discovered that I had one of my cuts without a depth defined. The software should catch it but it did not. I was making a 5’ tall sign for my wife and it messed on the second to last letter!! Now I no longer wait until the end to let the software catch the depth.

Jeremy I live the same problem, I write the solution you can read in new topic “estlcam z movement problem”

@Jeremy, please post some details on that quadcopter!