Lowrider build in UK

Time to share my hobby build of a lowrider. I’ve been planning some form of MPCNC for a few years but always lacked the space. Now we have moved house and I get to have a workshop (garage)… the build has begun!

Unfortunately my PLA filament 3d printer is out of action until I replace the unserviceable Melzi board with something more suitable … so some parts have been printed by my brother in PLA and some parts using my resin printer.

Router of choice is the KATSU copy of a Makita model. It involved a change to the mounting holes for the router using info found on the web.

Y plates cut by hand using stick on paper template.
Router plate cut using my existing cheap chinese CNC

Board is a MKS Gen 1.4
software is GRBL. I use GRBL on my small CNC and like its co-ordinate system and understand how to manipulate settings etc. It fits in well with my workflow

  • design in Fusion 360
  • generate Code in Fusion 360 post processor for grbl
  • save G code to network drive
  • Lowrider is connected to an old Dell Optiplex fitted with a touchscreen.
  • G code loaded to GRBL… and start cutting!

Only a few test cuts made so far and no real production yet until I can ensure all is robust enough for a prolonged cut.

Things to do:

  • tidy up wiring… I’m still using a breadboard to get my drivers running in a series mode.
  • Send x motor wiring through cable chain
  • Set up dust extraction… change of router means change of method
  • Use LR to make some accurate Y plates to achieve closer to a square setup
  • Add endstops

Problems I have encountered:

  • Slightly out of square at build and most likely due to handcut Y plates.
  • tightening M4 nuts on side plates for y axis. Cant get a grip of them easily!
  • One of the Z motors struggled to lift weight of router assembly which wasn’t helped by the weight of the control board and wiring mounts. Those are now shifted to the side of the Y plate and all is well again so far

So thanks to all that help on this forum, I have sourced the answer to many of my glitches.

Hopefully more updates as build progresses


Updating the build . Replaced the MDF router mount with Polypropylene cut using the cheap chinese CNC. I use 10mm commercial chopping board and it cuts really well with a relatively slow spindle, 2 fluted mill on the chinese machine. It is also quite strong and easily obtainable as a material.

I have made the dust shoe mounting holes larger (6mm) so they can accept some M4 threaded inserts. These are great for surface mounting items with minimal hassle. Hole of 6 mm, place it in the hole with a hex driver and screw the m4 machine screw in to it. They also come in M6 variety. I use them all over the place for some of my projects.

Nearly finished printing the Makita clone dust extraction parts I found here All necessary modifications to work with a Makita RT0700C or RT0701C
The central deflector? is in place and now just waiting for the top cover to finish printing to replace the original section already in place. The M4 inserts will make that a hassle free and quick job.

hopefully all will run normally when I start her up again tomorrow after fiddling so much today.!

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Modification of the table to add a wide slot and double wheels to give more stability and consistency in the z axis. I was finding that the y plates flex as they are MDF and there is also an element of flex in the bearing carriages on the plate. I think some of that is stress in the 3d printed parts so will look at printing them again now my filament printer is raised from the dead.

New and more rigid x bars remain overlong ready for expansion on that axis when all is finalised.

Cuts going reasonably well usually only let down by my experimentation on feed rates and depths. X skipping has been reduced with more rigid X bars and replacing the 20 tooth x axis sprocket with the 16 tooth as given in original specification ( was unable to get 16 tooth at time of initial build!)