Part of our continuing coverage of highlights from the 2014 Bay Area Maker Faire
Let’s file this under “intro machines.” The Makesmith CNC, currently available on Kickstarter for just $195 including everything but the Dremel tool. It makes very clever use of appropriate technology: Three tiny hobby servo motors, modified for continuous rotation, turn gears that turn the lead screws (well, all-thread) to drive the XYZ stage. An magnetic encoder monitors the rotation, making a high-resolution, closed-loop control system. No bushings, melamine-coated MDF parts, Arduino control. Planned for future open source hardware+software release, too.
Perfect? Nope, but the creators of the project seem to be keenly aware of its abilities and limitations (many discussed here), and oh does it have affordability on its side.