About the C-Beam CNC Machine
The C-Beam Machine is a perfect CNC Machine to manufacturer custom plates out of wood, plastics, or even aluminium. In many projects it happens, that an off the shelf plate does not suit your needs, a C-Beam machine is the solution to this problem. A C-Beam machine offers the freedom to create the custom plates you need, right away, no long waits, no extortionate prices.
As in the name, the C-Beam machine makes full use of the C-Beam linear rail, which in turn uses the proven to work v-slot profile. Combining the C-Beam linear rail with other standard parts, allows for easy ACME lead screw linear actuators to be created. Three c-beam linear actuators are used on the C-Beam machine to drive the X, Y and Z axes. With the use of precise ACME lead screws, and anti-backlash nut blocks, highly accurate parts can be manufactured with the C-Beam machine.
the full kit
Our C-Beam Machine full kit takes parts from our very popular OX Full Kit, and adds in some specific extras for the C-Beam Machine. The full kit includes everything you need to build a working CNC Machine apart from the spoiler board. The controller is the extremely popular Hobby CNC xPro controller. The CNC xPro is a fully featured GRBL Based controller, it comes equipped with four beefy DRV8825’s stepper drivers with enough power to run the 175oz NEMA23 Stepper motors included with the CNC Machine. The CNC xPro paired with the included 24V 350W Power supply and Electronics cooling mounts, ensure for a reliable machine that can easily complete them super long jobs.
Mark Carew from Openbuilds made an excellent first person view assembly Video for the C-Beam machine. His video goes meretriciously through every step of the build and provides personal insight which you just can’t get from a written manual.
To make the build even easier, we systematically bag the parts and label them with their name, quantity and most importantly what section of the build they are used on. We have had great feedback using this system on our other kits, and it has proven to be well worth the time.
For the electrical side of the build, we have wrote a complete instruction manual which takes you from the end of the mechanical portion, to the point of getting the machine moving.
If you have any problems with the build, support is available in abundance. The C-Beam machine was conceived on the Openbuilds website, and there is a dedicated Build setup for this machine where you can get help from community members and even Mark himself. Alternatively we are available by phone or email for any issues or questions you may have.
what is in the kit
Our C-Beam full kit includes everything needed to build a working C-Beam machine except the MDF Spoiler board. Please see additional extras that can be added in the section below.
The C-Beam and V-Slot linear rails are pre-cut and tapped where needed. And the ACME Lead screws provided are to the correct length.
In the assembly video, M5 self-tapping screws are used, these are perfectly fine. However users have found that using bolts provides a stronger, longer lasting connection. Because of this, in our kit we provide the hardware to use self-tapping screws Or bolts.
For the MDF boards you will need 2 x 305x305x12mm boards. The hardware to mount the MDF boards is included in the kit.
Please see the tab ‘Software’ above to get an overview of the software provided and not provided with the machine.
To complete the build of this CNC machine, only simple tools are needed, Allen keys, Screw drivers, and Pliers.
By default the full kit comes with a router mount.
There is two options the first is a DeWalt D26200 as seen in the pictures. This is a 900W Input (620W Output), 16000-27000rpm manual speed compact router, with a 1/4” Collet. Please note we only supply the 240V 3 Pin UK Plug Version.
The second option includes the DeWalt 26200 and an End Mill Kit. The End Mill Kit consist of 7 end mills, they are 1/4″, 1/8″, 1/16″ end mills in both square end and ball end, and a 90 Degree Engraving Bit. A 1/8″ collet for the Dewalt 26200 is also included.
The same options above are also available for the Makita RT0700CX4 palm router, this is a slightly smaller router, therefore adapters will be provided. The Makita is a 710W Input, 10000-30000rpm manual speed compact router, with a 1/4” Collet. Please note we only supply the 240V 3 Pin UK Plug Version. If the mill kit is chosen a 1/8″ Makita collet will be supplied
CNC Machining is naturally a messy job, containing and removing the cutting debris with a dust shoe will keep the machine clean and allow it to run much smoother. A cleaner machine will also mean the mechanical parts will wear significantly less. The dust shoe will also create a vacuum environment for the cut, removing chips and thus removing heat, this will improve cutting performance and increase the milling bit life span. If you are considering to use the C-Beam Machine in a production environment we would highly recommend using a dust shoe.
Our split-shoe is specially designed for smaller CNC Machines like the C-Beam Machine, and will clamp around any 71mm outer diameter router, this includes the DeWalt D26200. It has a clear arcylic plate that allows the cut to be viewed during operation, and a 2” brush that magnetically attaches to the upper plate. The removable brush ring allows for quick and easy access to change the bit. The vacuum outlet is 2-1/2”.
All Software Bought With The Machine Is Discounted By 5% From Its Normal Price.
The C-Beam Machine has the following software work flow: CAD → CAM → G-Code Sender.
The G-Code sender takes the file produced from the CAM Software, and sends it to the machine via USB. In addition you can also jog the machine, enter manual commands, and configure the firmware within it. We recommend Universal G-Code Sender, this program is freely available and our instruction manual covers downloading and installing it. Whatever software option you choose (Even ‘None’) this is included.
CAM Software produces G-Code tool paths from your CAD designs. We do not provide CAM Software with the machine, unless chosen as an option. We have tried nearly all the offerings available, and have settled with the software made by Vectric. It is powerful software, but very easy to use. Please see the tab ‘Software’ above to see a breakdown of the different versions available. However the C-Beam Machine is fully compatible with any CAM Software which can export G-Code, this includes free ones like Fusion360 and Sketchucam.
By standard the CNC Machine is connected via a USB Cable. The USB Cable provided is extremely high quality to minimize any external interference. USB Cables work well but can be prone to snagging. On larger machines their limited length can also be an issue.
The bluetooth adapter solves these issues. With the bluetooth adapter connecting to the machine and controlling it, is the same as if there was a USB cable, however there isn’t. Using a USB cable negates the chance of a cable snagging, removes the fears of electrical interference, and allows control of the machine from a more distant computer.
540 x 617 x 501mm
305 x 280mm
160mm Travel – 31.75mm Workable depth
Drive System – ACME Lead Screws
Linear Guides – Polycarbonate wheels on anodised C-Beam V-Slot Extrusion.
Motors – NEMA23 175oz Stepper Motors (X, Y & Z)
Accuracy – 0.05 – 0.10mm
Controller – USB CNC xPro V3 Controller, GRBL 1.1 Firmware.
Power – 24V 350W Output, Switchable 110-220V Input.
Software – Universal G-Code Sender Windows/Mac Compatible.
We would like to give a big thank you to Mark Carew and Openbuilds part store for designing an excellent Hobby CNC Mill and V-Slot system, which they have allowed to be freely shared, remixed, and sold. We would also like to thank the Openbuilds and wider community for sharing their upgrades to make the C-Beam Machine even better.