Community challenge #11, 2019-2020 edition: VOTE HERE!

What a wonderful diverse set of entries for this 11th community challenge, thanks everyone for participating!

Let’s vote now! (legit community members only, as usual)

0 voters

Poll will close on Aug 9th midnight PST
That’s also when I’ll do a final check on CutRocket links and add bonus points to the tally.

Is a finished project a requirement? I don’t see an indication that Vince’s project is finished, but did I miss something in his entry?

As far as I am concerned Vince’s entry is valid, it has pics of the milled piece, the design files, and interesting notes on the project. The fact that he may run a finishing pass later is a detail to me, but everyone is welcome to consider the entry “as it stood as of Aug 2nd midnight PST” when they cast their vote. I could also lock the contest thread to freeze the entries, but in the past there have been interesting comments being added after the deadline, so unless this is a problem for anyone I would rather leave it open.


Team Nomad super representing this time around!
Also Vince’s project is amazing. I love the jig and going to be thinking about how to incorporate something like that into more projects.


I interpreted the challenge as a way to prove if a manual positional “4th axis” workflow is viable. It turned in a “How to hack a 5 axis part”. The goal was never to complete an actual finished useable part (although :thinking:). The part has 0.010"/0.010" stock left and is within the expected tolerances without any gouging.

Three blanks were machined because the plan was to start a community thread about this type of work, tips tricks, and roughing/finishing. There’s lots of learning to do!


Think we need a vote if @Vince.Fab should mount that thing on bearings and wind it up to 50k rpm. (And stand really really far away)

It is an interesting approach to multi side machining that is simple/cost effective to create which I think gives it advantages to some more complex 4th axis and/or dividing head approaches. Of course the real limiting factor on the Nomad is the Z height - though @Vince.Fab has done some crazy work solving that as well!


Vince, I know of your prowess with your machines. This is no slight towards you or anyone else, but why make rules? Why not let’s just say, “Have a vote on all the entries!”?

There are members that can’t divert enough time to finishing a competition, because of obligations elsewhere. You’re probably one of them! Those that do spend the time should be judged on an equal basis.

I wasn’t and won’t comment further, because I don’t want to ruin this “challenge” that Julien has created. It is certainly a great thing for all of us.

A nomad is not a real CNC it’s a kids toy, we all know that, SO3 IS A REAL CNC … Runs for the hills😂

I love the stuff you nomadic people produce, yet again proving size of machine has no relevance quality. as always ladies and gents your entries are great for confidence and information. well done all to those entered, and again thnx to C3D and Team for swag and competition support.

Jon - official C3D fanboy


As I was admiring your approach to making the turbine in the back of my head was a voice saying

“I wouldn’t want to be anywhere near that thing spooling up” and I am glad it’s just a proof of machine work holding / positioning tactics as the balance of turbines has to be on point or as you already know.


I love your approach and will keep it in mind for future jobs.

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That would actually make a pretty good first public youtube video…strap it on the 60krpm spindle. Hmmmm.

As for the Z height. This fixture is not compatible with a stock Z but works with an upgraded one and can hold right around a 2.5" max od. Also reminds me that the ballscrew needs trimming.

@Able its suprising how much even perfectly machined compressors need to be balanced. The work holding really worked well, only zero’d the machine once.


Are you going to send it out with an assembly to endeavor to balance it?

Final bump! Finish line ahead.

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This is yet another one that was not easy to settle, what with a last minute tie for first place, and so many excellent entries to pick from for jury’s prize.
After consulting with the oracles of CNC, the results are:

  • @PhilG wins by a hair. Very nice execution and write-up, and that GoPro mount should last forever!
  • @Vince.Fab wins second place, well 1.01th place really, for yet again pushing the limits of what can done with of a Shapeoko. Very inspiring as always!
  • Jury’s prize goes to @Olle for his pyramid-style stove lamp, I liked the idea, execution and write-up, and the fact that he stepped up to participate in the contest as a first contribution to the forum, bonus cool points for that.

@Jorge will be in touch to send your store credit codes.

Thanks everyone for your entries. Challenge #12 coming soon! (no, really, this time around)


Wow! Thanks all! Some great entries to compete against, some great ‘out of the box’ thinking from @ColdCoffee, @Olle, @Vince.Fab - more lessons learned! I knew I had to bring my A game to compete against @Vince.Fab and sure enough it was a photo finish.

Great to see Team Nomad jumping in with more entries again!

On to #12 and puzzles… the first puzzle being… what to make?


Thanks to the jury for the acknowledgement and all the other entries for inspiration! I will use many of the tricks and concepts other users shared here in the future.


Thanks for the awesome competition! This one was super fun plus educational and the forum member participation was on point. Next time I’ll focus more on a better write-up (even though its not as fun as machining)

Team Nomad always killing it :skull_and_crossbones:


Always inspiring to me Vince.

My hope is to someday finish a piece equal to one of your roughs.


Again well done all, and I encourage all the people lurking saying “I can’t submit mine it looks rubbish or not good enough” please go for it, why? Because yes there a people here that can smash it out the park, but we all can see past shiny, as in, we do not just look at the end product, it is the journey, the engineering challenges you let us know you overcame. So join me with my entry at contest 12, by the way contest 12 is now official know as the “GET IT UP YOU CORONA VIRUS CONTEST” Show your support by focusing on this and free your mind of worry. Stay safe, stay sharp, stay creative!! Right back to work lunch over, let’s do this!!


Absolutely, and I can confirm that for jury’s prize I value creativity, enthusiasm, and more generally the will to share the joy of machining/failing/failing again/succeeding, way more than the number of votes, so everyone has a chance to win.