Beaver upgrade expectations

I am considering the Beaver upgrade and a 2.2 W spindle. What could a person expect in terms of performance increase? Would you still be limited by the router bit?

It entirely depends on what you are milling. In wood, you might not see that much improvement, in aluminum, you will see a lot more improvement since you are fighting the rigidity of the z-axis deflecting at that point.

I don’t know what you mean “limited by the router bit”. If you buy decent endmills, they are not the limiting factor ever. Even a $10 endmill can be pushed harder than the Shapeoko 3 can manage.

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Thanks for the response. I am under the assumption that an endmill can only handle so much chip load for a given spindle speed. Right now with my Dewalt I generally run on a 1 setting. What would I change to increase speed with a spindle and Beaver?

I haven’t got the hdz but there is a noticeable difference between the settings they can cut aluminium with and what I can with a stock z - though there are a lot of factors. I ave noticed their depth of cut and optimal load can be significantly higher than mine.

I’d imagine having a more rigid x/z would allow you to take deeper cuts in timber, at a higher federate too. I find the flex in the xz carriage gives me a lot of chatter when pushing it in timber When cutting in the y direction

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A 2.2k kw spindle gives you many benefits including:

• Higher torque and lower speeds – better for milling aluminium and some wood
• Much, much quieter
• Greater selection of collets – allowing you to select more versatile end mills (more so in the UK)
• Better accuracy and less run off
• Less heat – meaning wood doesn’t warp when being milled
• Less maintenance – no need to change bushings
• Arguably cheaper in the long run
• Auto start/stop speed control

The HDZ is designed to accommodate such spindle and to be heavy duty meaning you can push the bit/router harder and faster than you would on stock, however like most things knowledge and skill comes into it along with the mill ends used and the material being machined.


Yep, listen to Luke. He knows it all (since he made it).

Just a point about the endmill, it doesn’t matter about speed with how much you can have for a chipload but power/torque of the spindle/router. You can have any chipload you want at any speed, it depends on how much torque you have and how mlfast your machine can go. I’d recommend pushing higher RPMs and higher speeds. You can do more than the 1 setting with the Shapeoko (assuming wood or aluminum).

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