Router movement upon deepest plunge - need some expertise

Hey forum friends,

I’m finally getting some time to get familiar with my Shapeoko Xl but I’m having a little problem with movement of my router when I plunge deeper into my wood.

Here is a video clip of what I’m talking about. The first time, you can’t see it very good, but the next plunges, you can see what I’m talking about.

Thanks for you help

It looks like a v wheel is loose, or it is possibly going too low and the bottom v wheels are coming off the track.

As I’m looking at it closer, it looks like it could be the V-wheel, with the nut directly behind the router. Would that be a possibility? I remember seeing something about turning it clockwise or counterclockwise, but Im getting confused

It’s a real balancing act working down low.
These machines like an extra waste board on top of the factory one.
They work down low, you just have to pay extra attention, and maybe lose a spring if you start losing steps in Z.

You should only turn the nut in the tightening (clockwise) direction, just until the v wheel wont turn with your finger.

That’s what I’m realizing. I’ve been looking at making a threaded table, but I guess that I’ll have to do that by hand… Bummer

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Besides the waste board that came with the machine, I have 2 pieces of 3/4 inch wood on top of it. How thick of a waste board do I need?

Oh, thats plenty. I did the holes in mine without extra, but had a longer bit.
Probably just a loose wheel.

Maybe I’ll look for a longer bit and see if that will make any difference. Where is a good place to find longer bits???

I’ll find the link where I got mine, but I really think yours is a different issue, with that extra board on yours, and your router all the way down in the holder, it shouldn’t be coming off the track.
I have seen where people have put the Z plate upside down, but I’m not sure what the affects of that are. I just saw it in another post.
I broke one of my wheels in a crash. I recommend the maintenance kit, in case that happens.

I did order a maintenance kit with my machine. I had initially installed my z plate upside down, but a week or so ago, I had some help on the forum and I got that resolved… Or at least I thought that I did.

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I get all my v bits here

Awesome, Ill check it out… So I just put another 3/4 inch piece of MDF as another waste board and it worked like a charm! Go figure- 3 extra mdf boards.

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Here is a great tuning video, and it gives good advice about the threaded waste board at about 4:50 in the video.

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OK I see your problem.
Your router mount is in the wrong (top) holes, not the bottom holes.
The plate is almost reversible, but the spring bolts are off center a little.
Just move the mount to the bottom, open holes. :slight_smile:YIPPEE
EDIT: My plate is upside down, but doesn’t change much, just Z direction.

Awesome!! I’ll give it a whirl… Thanks for you help Jerry! I’ll be making the change tomorrow… I’ll be heading to work for the night! Thanks again!

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Actually looking at it the whole Z axis plate looks to be upside down. I believe the V wheel adjustment nuts should be to your left as you’re facing the front of the machine. Did you have to invert Z in Grbl to get the Z plate moving down when commanded to move down and Z moving up when commanded up? Did you invert any wires to the Z stepper? I’ve been wrong before, maybe worth checking though.


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Hey Dan, I thought that I had resolved my plate being upside down from my earlier thread… But, I’ll have to look at things again. I was going to change my settings, but someone pointed out that I could turn the z plate and it would resolve it… I did move my router mount as Jerry recommended earlier. So far so good.

I was just thinking if your plate was inverted back to normal your router mount would be in the correct holes, albeit your C3D sticker would be upside down. I saw a post recently where the sticker was installed upside down at the factory and it confused the heck out of the end user while trying to assemble their machine, that’s why I thought of that. My sticker was just in a bag when I got my machine, but I guess some come pre-stuck? Anyways however it works out is fine I guess, just trying to help sort out your machine issues. One thing I did notice about the Z plate though is that the holes for the spring holes are not symmetrical top to bottom, but in your case I think that actually makes spring tension less, which may or may not help when deep plunging? Fun little machines, a hobby within a hobby so to speak, haha!



@d_dubba_u it was me who suggested that your Z plate may have been fitted upside down. This is what I said at the time:

Check the Zmount, it sounds like the plate is on upside down - easily done I know from experience.

Should be fitted this way:

I would resist the urge to mount it any other way and fiddle with Gerbl to compensate for the reverse running. To do this is to fiddle with the factory assembly instructions and settings and who knows what repercussions down the track.