Christmas gift ideas

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Christmas gift ideas

Post by tjshape » Mon Dec 01, 2014 4:25 pm

I need to give some ideas to friends and family for Christmas this year so I'm looking for suggestions on must have upgrades or accessories for the Shapeoko - preferably $100 or less.

I already have upgraded the spindle to a dewalt dw660, added the waste board with threaded inserts, installed a z-axis knob with crank, and installed the acme upgrade along with the z-axis belt drive upgrade.

Any ideas? Maybe some specific router bits?
Shapeoko 2, ACME upgrade, Belt Drive Z-Axis upgrade, Dewalt DW660

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Re: Christmas gift ideas

Post by WillAdams » Mon Dec 01, 2014 4:47 pm

Matched sets of raw materials and endmills suitable for milling them? You'd then use the raw materials to make them some suitable gift for next year....

Wrote this up when a wife asked what to get her husband on reddit: ... uy/cmdgzrj

Any idea of what sort of projects he's planning on making?

One of the classic problems of the person who has just finished making a CNC machine is --- what material will I cut and test? (Please don't tell my wife where her plastic cutting board went --- I don't think she noticed the substitution) and the second is --- what will I make?

So if he knows what he wants to make as a "real" project, then you could purchase the material needed for a really nice version (assuming he's lucky enough to already have inspection tools --- while I agree w/ CNCgeek that a nice Mitutoyo or Starrett caliper or micrometer would be nice, if he's planning on working in wood or plastic (seems likely given the machine size) they're way overkill (that said, I have a nice Mitutoyo of my father which I keep in a case w/ my machine: along w/ a Brown & Sharpe micrometer) and he may be planning on making do w/ an inexpensive digital plastic one (which frankly is easier to use, and quite as nice for woodworking and non-dimension-critical work so long as one buys a good quality unit w/ good battery life).

Just by way of an overview, you might find the Shapeoko wiki or interest. We have an FAQ:

and you may find yourself on the receiving end of some of the "Rules": ... f_ShapeOko (please don't buy him a 1,000 M5 washers though --- too prosaic for a gift)

An oft-recommended book is The CNC Cookbook: An Introduction to the Creation and Operation of Computer Controlled Mills, Router Tables, Lathes, and More by E. Hess.

If he's going to be doing woodworking, then he might be able to make use of finishing / trimming tools --- Lee Valley is a great source for those (and they have an excellent example of a "useful enough" caliper for quick, (non-critical) measurements: ... at=51&ap=1 --- by way of comparison here's an entry-level made in the U.S. Starrett: ... 3513,43546 ).

If he doesn't have a nice block plane: ... 1189,46791

If he likes miniatures: ... 3212,70138 (they have an entire line of miniature tools, so you'd be set for gift-giving for years if you go this route).
Shapeoko 3XL #0006 w/ Carbide Compact Router w/0.125″ and ¼″ Carbide 3D precision collets

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Re: Christmas gift ideas

Post by oniontalker » Tue Dec 02, 2014 12:55 am

Nice set of allen wrenches, maybe a gimmicky wrench, like the 8mm Joker, locktite, 1/8" collet for your router.

As for router bits, I can't suggest Alan Campbell enough, even half way across the world now, he gets me what I need in a timely fashion for an acceptable price.
His website is:

If you want to stray a little above $100.... ($112.95), caliper: ... UTF8&psc=1

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Re: Christmas gift ideas

Post by Schruminator » Tue Dec 02, 2014 4:12 pm

The items I think come in handy are:

6" Calipers ($10-20 on Amazon or at Harbor Freight)-- two sets, one inside where you design the part, one out with your machine where you mill it.
A variety of endmills (get what you need for plastic, wood, fine detail, roughing something out. Check out drillman1 on eBay)
Engineering squares ( ... 2936,42941)
A new or better set of hearing protection or safety glasses
A workshop apron to keep all of the dust off
A respirator or mask for when you're making a particularly large amount of dust
1.8m x 1.0m SO2 #3638 / Vectric Aspire / ACME Z-axis / View my photography at

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Re: Christmas gift ideas

Post by tjshape » Tue Dec 02, 2014 4:32 pm

Excellent suggestions! I'm going to have my work cut out for me trying to figure out which of these I cannot live without. :-)
Shapeoko 2, ACME upgrade, Belt Drive Z-Axis upgrade, Dewalt DW660

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