Making a dust shoe mount for the HDZ 4.0

I cut a little bit of MDF on my machine and quickly realized a dust shoe is somewhat of a necessity.

Here are my requirements:

-attached to X-axis carriage so it doesn’t move up and down with Z axis
-doesn’t limit X-axis travel
-doesn’t block access to router speed dial or power switch

After some measuring, thinking, and sketching, I made a 3D model:

Some 1:1 printouts, a bit of pizza box cardboard, and a fit-check mock-up was born.

With Z all the way up. Plenty of access to speed dial and power switch through opening on X+ side:

Z all the way down:

Mounts to the drag chain bracket holes on the back of the X carriage:

Bottom plate mounts to the holes in the ballscrew bearing plate (not a ton of thread length, but it’s enough).

I may end up adding some triangular gussets where the front plate meets the bottom plate on the real one. And obviously various holes on the front plate for attaching the dust shoe setup.


Well now I want to add a pizza cutter wheel drag knife and see the Shapeoko making accurate pizza slices :wink:


You know, time was, plebes had to keep a template for making accurate cuts in their headgear:


Do you suppose a second cadet could be ordered to suck through a straw to provide “crumb extraction” whilst the pie was cut? :grinning:

No, but there’s an old story about a gunner who, frustrated in his attempt at cutting neatly, mashed everything together and corrected the menu to be cherry cobbler rather than pie.

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We should make a “I made a bulky Z-independent dust shoe mount for my HDZ and I love it” club :slight_smile:


I worked at a place that had an Eastman static cutting table. They look like this. I think the one we had was had a 6 foot by 20-something foot cutting area.

The tool head has vectorable “spindles” that extend and retract pneumatically:

Put a big enough round knife in there and you could put a hurtin’ on some pizza.

I usually use the scissors from my knife block to cut homemade pizza. They do make special pizza scissors that have the spatula part of a pie server attached to one blade:


Julien - I had seen those two posts when researching this topic (the dust shoe mounting, not pizza / pie cutting) and I think it’s fair to say I cheated off / was inspired by them. I’m hoping to make something that will have minimal weight, but good stiffness to support itself and the weight / forces imparted on it by the dust shoe setup and hose.


I’m having a little difficulty imagining the clean up in the dust collection system after the pie is cut. @Julien You thought your HPDE was bad!

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The pepperoni oil might be a good alternative to Vactra No2 for linear rail maintenance, who knows :upside_down_face:

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There would likely be fewer complaints if it dripped onto the chopping board workpiece :wink:

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So this is a mount for a sweepy type dust shoe but on fixed Z?

What material are you thinking of making the dust shoe mount from?

I think that Eastman could probably place the pepperoni with that round brown tool too :wink:


Yup, the dust shoe will just move in X and Y with the machine, but will be manually adjustable in Z so you can set the bottom ends of the brush bristles at or slightly below the top of the workpiece.

I’ve got the rear plate and bottom plate modeled as 1/8" (~3 mm). Was thinking aluminum for those. The front plate is 1/4" (~6 mm) and the spacer bars at the top are 3/8" (~9.5 mm). Maybe acrylic / polycarbonate for those. Or the front plate, bottom plate, and spacers could be modified to be one big bent sheet metal or welded part out of thin-ish material. The downside there is that it would make it harder to modify (add holes, lightening cutouts, etc.) than individual flat pieces that fasten together like I’ve got it now.

The brown-ended tool is the drag knife. The brown is some sort of slippery plastic. They have 45 degree and 30 degree blades that fit in the tool (angle relative to flat across the table surface). It makes a cool ker-thunk sound when the pneumatics actuate it down to the table surface.


For a pepperoni placer, you could probably have a tubular magazine of them oriented vertically or at an angle. An air blast would separate off the lowest one and feed it to the placement chamber. Perhaps an aluminum tube for the magazine with a small resistive heater would warm the fat enough to keep them from getting stuck.

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I’d been wondering about cutting some 2-3mm Aluminium on the Shapoko and then folding it into place to give some stiffness, not unlike your plans there.

As for Pizza robots, fortunately it has already been done, so I can stop feeling that it ought to be and wondering how…

Even by the French (although this may just have been to wind up the Italians)

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You can get a dewalt leaf blower and move the operation outside(:>)



You should be able to make wooden tooling for forming that thickness of aluminum. Put some 3 mm or larger corner radii where the bends will be. Place a wooden block on the portion to be bent and coax it around with a hammer.

Yum - now I want brick oven pizza and a robot with a giant ulu!


Locating the machine in the test section of a wind tunnel with airflow running in the +Y direction would be pretty spiffy dust extraction. Alternatively, if you had a big suction intake that was the width of the machine and maybe a fist high located at the back edge of the wasteboard coupled with some sort of airflow generator at the front edge of the wasteboard (like one of those floor drying blowers with the flat-ish outputs), perhaps that would work. Or it might just envelop the machine in a cloud of dust. :upside_down_face:

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I’d not thought of wood formers, I’ve got a basic sheet metal bender but it’s just angle steel not fingers and it does rather stress the Aluminium.

I might make an insert with a radius for it…

You can tell those pizza shears were not made for Americans or the slice would be at least double that size.

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I’ve made pizza before and not even cut it. Just put it on a plate and incrementally slid it over the edge of the plate to take bites. :blush:

I started modeling the shoe part of the dust shoe system:

The bottom of the X carriage is about 3.9 inches (~100 mm) above my 3/4" (~19 mm) thick wasteboard. The bottom plate of the mount is 1/8 inch (~3 mm) and then the shoe is 1.42 inches (~36 mm) overall height. That leaves a travel range of about 2.4 inches (~61 mm). I rounded up to 2.5 inches and that’s how long I made the slots on the slide plate that will attach to the shoe.

The brush strip is this stuff. If you slide it out of the plastic extrusion, the bristles are in a galvanized steel backer. The shoe plate has a step on the bottom outside edge that the backer will corner into.

I’m thinking about making a couple sizes of clear insert disks for different size cutters that will sit in a shallow counterbore of the big hole in the shoe plate. Like the ones in this router table:



Getting closer to a complete design. Needed a way to keep the shoe at 90 degrees to the slide plate that it attaches to and something to attach a dust collection hose to.

I got a perfectly good 1.25" (31.75 mm) shop vac hose out of the neighbor’s trash (not that I don’t have three others already, but hey, it was free). I removed the straight portion at the the business end and discovered that the corrugated hose fits snugly over 1" PVC pipe (whose outside diameter is 1.315" (33.4 mm)). In the course of designing a flange to hold the pipe to the shoe, I ended up making the hose end of the shoe the same diameter as the cutter end. That made it easier to put some simple gussets between the slide plate and the shoe. I haven’t finished putting all the holes and fasteners in, but I think you get the idea.