Shapeoko disaster


I just had a part come loose and and nearly tear my HDZ off the rails. Very scary. Only thing that broke (I think) is one of the v-groove V-wheels rollers on the bottom. Don’t need the down time so I found a replacement at McMaster Carr, but they only have steel ones in this size. Is that going to be a problem? Do the nylon ones act as a fail safe so the entire rail isn’t rekt? Obviously nylon price would be nice; steel ones are 40.00 each and I was going to replace both. Part number 6321K47 if anyone is interested.

Please write in to us about this at and we’ll work out how to handle this and advise on the materials issue.

I can do that, but I didn’t want to wait until Monday. I have a courier delivering these tomorrow.

The steel V Wheels will be substantially harder than the Aluminium and may well damage the V section on the rail. It might well be best to wait for a new plastic V Wheel.

If the force was sufficient to break the V Wheel there it’s worth checking the entire machine over, from frame square & level upwards too.


I emailed support and that’s basically what he says as well… I will have to manage with just a Nomad for a few days. lesson learned.

1 Like

I don’t know anything about the Nomad, but can you not borrow a V wheel from your Nomad to fix the HDM?

HDZ not HDM - corrected original post.


The Nomad has a completely different set up and few parts that could be cannibalized by the Shapeoko. It’s also a functioning mill so I’m skeptical of that plan :face_with_monocle:.

1 Like

You could look at this as an excuse to buy a lathe and CNC convert it so you can make replacement Delrin wheels :wink:

1 Like

I tested a few metal V-Wheels for Carbide a few years back…they will DESTROY the aluminum rails, so please do NOT buy the metal ones.

Being a CNC machinist (Even if you are cutting wood, you are a machinist) takes training, and I often (perhaps 75%) see Shapeoko owners with the back of their plastic clamp LOWER than the part…or the screw towards the BACK of the clamp. Very wrong…and feel that a proper clamp (Metal) and a set of how to clamp, NEEDS to be included in every machine purchase…It’s like selling a keyed drill chuck without the key… Work Safe

How to properly clamp:

The VERY first thing I make on my Shapeoko back in 2015


I always think about a post I believe was from you when clamping and make sure they’re level. This was a situation with a vise. I was milling a rubber (semi rigid urethane resin) part and didn’t want to distort the shape by tightening too much. I won’t be making that mistake again.

1 Like

If only Carbide 3D made one. Trying to only buy American made machines for my shop, so limited options. Latest addition is Fusion3’s new Edge printer, which does nylon though…

1 Like

I know…I made them for a few years to sell on Etsy…because there was no good small clamp available…here we are 7 years later…and this is STILL no good option. Sad. I usually recommend the Little Machine Shop 8mm steel clamping sets…(throw away the 8mm studs, keep the clamps)…overkill and made from Chinesium. A nice little opportunity for someone with a Tormach…OR perhaps Carbide3D…

Rubber (Machining)…Before coming an Engineer/Scientist at NASA I was a Tool and Die Maker for General Dynamics…and other than making tools…we (the team), got to make (or try to make) the weird stuff needed for the submarine…I mastered machining rubber and made a LOT of parts…the secret was grinding…before I came along parts were frozen and quickly machined while frozen hard…worked ok but hitting tight sealing tolerance was hit of miss (you only had one shot before the part defrosted (locally), whereas you could grind the part soft all day long. Holding was usually done with contact adhesive (Engineers call glue adhesive…chuckle). Grinding wheels (stones) work GREAT on the Shapeoko…

Work Smart

Here’s a photo to show I’m not lying…


Very cool. I learned a lot from you when I was on Instagram. I like the freezer trick. I’m cutting recess in the bottom of ski boot attachments which I molded to put magnets in. They will “snap” onto the skis. VFX will make the skis magically grow out of the boot.

Learned another safety lesson too with this job: 1” x .25” rare earth magnets is the size when they start getting dangerous…


Don’t remember if this is against the rules or not, but I found as a hobbyist that the best source for small parts and materials for my Shapeoko is

I don’t know how you folks avoid the McMaster shipping nasties. Last time I ordered they tried to charge me $25.00 shipping on a $10 order. Had this happen twice.