The Great Alaskan Lowrider

Hey Everyone, Starting my build thread finally. Making some good progress now that I have my M3 up and running. I really enjoyed seeing everyone’s builds and this is one of the better supported machines out there. Great community here, so I’m excited to finally post my progress.

As I’m getting parts together finally, it seems like the tubes seem to be just slightly too small. The printed pieces all seem to fit together really well with my cnc’d parts but its slightly larger than the 1 in tube. My tubes are for sure the 1 in OD and 25.4 mm, so not sure what I might be missing.

Has anyone else run into this? Will I maybe need to reprint these scaled down a little, or maybe use something to build up the tube like electrical tape? I haven’t fully assembled the x/y section yet but it seems like its not going to get any tighter.

Going for a slightly smaller table, its 4ft x 6 ft and so it should be able to cut at least a 3 x 5 sheet. Plenty big for just dorking around for now, but I love that this machine can easily be scaled for another table. Going to have suction and all that once its up and running. I have another little cnc that I might turn into a full time laser, but well see.

Oh the Thrill of the Build!

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Awesome. Looks like a solid build. Can’t wait to see what you make.

IIRC, the pipes are loose until the spacers and the other pipes are pressed up against them. It’s been a while though…

Oh geeze, of course that’s it, lol, there’s a spacer. I’ll probably answer all of my questions if I just keep going.

smacks forehead

Well that answers that. Cut the y plate tonight and came out good. A little tight though when trying to fit the z roller arm into the slot. I could sand that up a bit although its nice that its snug.

Does anyone poly their parts before assembly? I’ve been considering that before I get too far. I definitely need to glue up my y plate. The plywood separated a little bit in the narrower areas. Maybe I should have used a different type, but it looks good at least.

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Depending on where you are in AK, it’s probably dry enough to not worry too much about giving it a clear coat. One of my projects this summer is to pull mine apart and spray it. Forgot how humid OH gets. So far I’ve not had any warping due to humidity.

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Yup you fit right in here. We have all made that same statement fairly often, when I forget a part I look around to see if anyone noticed (I usually work alone, but still check).


Build looks good. My next build is going to be a bit smaller than yours I think. I really just need to be able to cut 2’x4’ sheets…but I want to build my little table saw and a router into the table. I have a tiny 9’ wide shop so every inch counts.

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Whoa! What could you do with a CNC machine sitting on top of a table saw? There is some awesome project there just waiting to happen.

I am going to try and hopefully unbolt the table top the little saw came with, bolt it to the underside of the CNC table and raise the blade through. Zero clearance and I can get it out of the way when I don’t need it. I figure one of the long HF table (edge) clamps will work as a fence for both saw and router.

Don’t forget you’ll have to change the blade, and you’ll have to keep it in the same squareness, and will you cut miter slots in the table with the CNC? Great for crosscut sleds…

I am still using this saw fence on my table saw and I really like it:

John makes good stuff!

Eventually all of that for sure, I have to be patient though. I’m waiting until I can justify having a dedicated router table. I don’t even have a table saw yet, one piece at a time until… I RULE THE WORLD… I mean… have a complete shop. I don’t know how long I’ll be living here so don’t want to build so much I have to get rid of a bunch of stuff. I already have so much junk… its awesome… :slight_smile:

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When I actually complete a project in the shop I feel like I rule the world sometimes.


My other advice is, add wheels if you can.

The real question though. Do you have at least one airplane part in the yard?


Locking wheels. Don’t want it walking around the shop.

The real question though. Do you have at least one airplane part in the yard?
Not in the yard, but I have far too many RC nitro planes and parts around. My latest hasn't even seen the sky yet. Just a lot of dust since its been sitting in my shop waiting for an engine. I really need to get her flying

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I got distracted and started working on a nitro drone instead. Got pretty far but I needed a cnc to cut the body parts. So no excuses now… Using four rc heli rotors and a belt/flex shaft drive system. Not sure if it will ever fly, weight is a huge concern.


I guess that counts. That was the running joke at work, “You’re not a true Alaskan unless you have airplane parts in your yard!” It probably helped that half the guys in the shop had at least experimental/sport licenses.

Progress Pic. Not much yet, but its coming together. I went ahead and put a couple coats of poly on all of the wood parts. That should make it last as long as I need and then some, I figure.

So far so good. I forgot to buy some of the necessary screws for a couple parts, and I’m going to have to take this back apart, turns out, to install the rest of the stuff. Getting ahead of myself again.

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I flipped the bolts holding the bearings on, will that affect anything or should I remove them and put them the other way around?

Didn’t notice until I had done them all like that.

Nah, you’ll be fine. The picture seems to be fine at least. Most can go either way.

“Its the job never started as takes longest to finish.” - J.R.R. Tolkien

Making some good progress now. Got the unit assembled mostly, just need to install the belts and hook up the wiring. That’s going to take me a little bit. Not quite sure about a couple things on the RAMPS board. Hopefully I can answer my questions by pouring through posts.

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Get it as close as you can and put some pictures of anything you are unsure about here and we will get you sorted out.

My first little conundrum is power to the RAMPS. I see some people doing something like this instead of a using the dc input on the mega board. Is it an either/or kind of thing or is one better?

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