BLOG > Shapeoko2 CNC Mill Build Log & Review

[Update Nov. 28, 2015 – I now have a review of the X-Carve, which is the successor to the Shapeoko2]

Shapeoko2 CNC Mill
Here’s a quick snippet of the Shapeoko2 carving a name plaque out of wood.

I bet you thought that I only had room in my heart for one at-home manufacturing technology! 3D Printing is still my first true manufacturing love, but I’m very excited to share that I’ve started experimenting with CNC milling, too, thanks to the fine folks at Inventables. They sent me a Shapeoko2 CNC milling kit to assemble and evaluate. I’ve already started using it to do some work with acrylic and wood, and I’m planning to mill some PCBs with it soon (maybe I’ll even make another Eagle CAD tutorial on how to mill your own PCBs).  Watch the video below to see me assemble the machine, mill some wood, do some pen plotting, and deliver a thorough review. Enjoy!

Do you have a Shapeoko2 or similar machine? I’d love to hear about your CNC milling experiences in the comments! If you liked the Arduino/Shield mount that I printed for my Shapeoko2, you can find the design files on Thingiverse.

The Shapeoko2 is unfortunately no longer available for purchase (I know, the timing of this review isn’t ideal…), but you can now get the (even better) XCarve from Inventables. [Update Nov. 28, 2015 – I now have a review of the X-Carve]


    1. The finished dimensions are about 500x500mm. The actual package that it comes in is pretty compact, since it is not assembled, but it’s very heavy. The usable build area is about 300x300mm.

  1. Hi Jeremy,

    Have you tried PCB milling on this yet?
    The XCarve is on top of my list of Mills that could be used for home
    PCB milling,
    I’m tired of the chemical etch method and it’s associated mess
    and could use a cnc to finish off some enclosures.


    1. If you go with the milling instead of chemical etching you are just going to get another mess to deal with, the fiberglass dust which is quite nasty and bad for the lungs.

  2. Thanks for the review!

    I’m kind of new to Arduinos, and looking into 3d printing & CNC’ing. I’ve seen some good reviews from the Shapeoko’s, and I’m really considering getting one of their X-Carve systems for some of my future projects. It sounds like Inventables has a really good product line.

  3. Olá.parabéns.But it’s your wife? girlfriend?It does not matter but this helping you, right wife is the one who participates.

    I would like to make printed circuit boards with CNC, I saw some that make the design on the PCB, ever thought about doing a CNC, to design the circuit board with conductive liquid? and the board already would be finished quickly?

    A hug from Brazil Eduardo

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