Shapeoko 3 z axis issues

Im looking at buying my first cnc Shapeoko 3. I keep reading about z axis issues and the need for the Beaver CNC HDZ upgrade. My projects will involve a lot of z axis contour work.
can someone clarify this?


I’m Luke - the HDZ builder/designer. I’d say the standard S3 axis is more than suitable for most. Those who upgrade usually want additional Z travel or want to push their machine to the max. Sometimes this will include an upgrade to accommodate larger spindles etc.

Talking myself out of a s sale, the use of the standard Z is more than suitable for most. You might find it an upgrade you do at a later date.




how much more z travel does it provide

It allows for approx 150mm of Z travel but this shouldn’t be confused with clearance.

It does however allow you to use the full amount of clearance.

It’s not needed as much as desired by most. I myself wanted to move up to more power. And with more power comes more weight. I’m now pushing a 3HP spindle that I believe weighs in around 11 pounds. People with a standard z-axis have made it work, but it’s definitely pushing the limits of the stock axis. The Beaver HDZ takes a spindle like a champ without stressing it out. If you want to later get into metal work it will definitely be a plus.


I think we have become your Minions and are doing your evil bidding for you. LMAO

Its a great addition to your Shapeoko. Wont regret it.


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I should have put a disclaimer. There is something in the paint :stuck_out_tongue:


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