Relocating Controler Shapeoko XXL

I have the Shapeoko XXL for ~3 years now. I learned a few months ago that I used the Shapeoko 3 assembly guide to build it. Consequently the controler is on the back of the X-Axis. I could live with that but I don’t like how the box gather saw dust. I decided to move it where it belongs and have a few questions before I start the rewiring. I will use larger drag chain, new cables and quick disconnect for the stepper motors and at the controler. I will be also changing the limit switches, with the new proximity sensors. I have the Bit Zero and Bit Setter.

  1. How far can I relocate the controler?
    1a. Is there a limit to avoid any problems of disconnect or lost of voltage if the box is ~4 feet from the machine?
  2. Do the board need to be grounded to the machine? (Originally the back board is screwed directly on the Y-Left-Axis)
  3. Best 4 pins quick disconnect male/female?
  4. Any ideas/solutions to keep the saw dust away from wires/drag chains?
  5. Bit Setter location, In the instruction it is recommended to install it on the front right side. Any reason to avoid front left side?
  6. Plan to use Accoustic wall foam inside enclosure. Any cons?
  7. Should I run the proximity sensor cables separately from the stepper motors cables? (in a different drag chain)

Thank you for your time.

Warning: I reserve the right to add more questions :slight_smile:

Well I can help out a little. I built an enclosure around my xxl a few years ago.

I can offer my experience with question

2 The controller box does not need to be attached where it originally was. I drilled a 1in hole in my enclosure to pass the wires through and mounted it on the outside of the enclosure which is plywood in about the same location it was before. I just put a little piece of foam in the hole to prevent dust from coming out.

4 Do you use dust collection at all? I run a dust cyclone with a 5 gallon bucket and attached to my shop vac. I dont have any issues with dust on wires or drag chains. I do use the brush vacuum attachment once and awhile to clean the tops of rails, wires, drag chains but there is never much build up.

5 I have my bitsetter near the front left side. In the settings you can specify the location and save it. It worked best for my space/setup to have it on the left so its possible.

That’s about all I can answer. The rest I dont use or are out of my tech knowledge.

Make sure you re-ground the chassis of the Shapeoko after removing the controller, that’s currently providing the ground connection via the aluminium mounting plate.

Thank you Mike. Yes I will be using a dust collection. Not sure yet if it’s going to be the 3hp dust extractor or the M18 vac. both have a cyclone :slight_smile:

Great, I was wondering why one would put it on the right side. I understand that most people setup their material on the front left position, but I find it hawkward to run the wire on the other side of the machine.

Thank you Liam, yes I was concerned about grounding the board.

If they are shielded cables no. But for non-shielded cables, it would be a good idea as it may enable the use of soft limits without false triggers.

Keeping the sensor and motor cables well away from the router / spindle power cables is key to minimising the interference. That router power cable is a noise broadcast antenna.


I did not ground mine to anything, i just screwed onto the plywood side of my enclosure. I have been running it over a year like this with no issues. Did I miss something on the box? I thought the screws just went through the plastic housing, I’ll have to look closer at it now.

If you’re not having a problem then I wouldn’t worry.

If you do start to get issues then you might want to take a look at

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I’m looking for 4 wires connectors like those Xtension Connector Sets - OpenBuilds Part Store or better.

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