Coming on Monday, the Shapeoko Z-Plus, a new leadscrew Z axis with HG15 rails and inductive homing switches for the whole machine. The Z-Plus will be available as an option for all new Shapeoko purchases. Stay tuned for pricing and additional information next week.
@DanStory in here asking the real questions! I am salivating at the thought of that exact purchase combo… Been holding off on an HDZ mainly because whenever it comes up for sale I have been cutting things wonderfully with the stock z (for the most part) and I feel like it is ultimately overkill because all I cut is wood currently. This seems to be a really close second in rigidity and perfect for a machine that may see more of a production type role in a small business/home woodshop. Curious to know the technical differences in the lead screws…
edit: nice avatar
edit 2: the more I look at it, the more I NEEEEEED IT…
Nope, the hole patterns are different because we had to make this from sheet stock to keep the cost down. We’ll see what we can do moving forward.
Yep, close to the HDZ in performance but more in the middle for price.
Same sized rails but the ballscrew would be stiffer than an anti-backlash nut. (This is our own anti-backlash nut and it’s a lot beefier than the existing alternatives for a TR8x8 thread) That said, for most users it’s not a big difference in practice.
Yep. Can’t have it running off the end of the rails.
Z travel is close to the stock belt Z.
The spindle mount allows easier tram adjustment but it’s not the same at the EZ Tram on the HDZ.
We’re throwing together a blog post for next week to outline our Shapeoko development process moving forward but the short answer is that we’re moving toward rapid incremental improvement rather than a fixed Shapeoko V4, V5, V6. We think it’s better for customers and it better suits our abilities.
For what it’s worth, we did design Shapeoko 4 about 18 months ago but it was too expensive for us to be comfortable with it. Since then, we’ve worked really hard to cut costs so we can afford to upgrade the machines without massive price increases. A current Shapeoko with the Z-Plus and a BitSetter is a better version of what we had planned for Shapeoko 4.
As I was telling Winston earlier, the iterative upgrades is great, and keeps the initial cost of the machine down and you can upgrade as your need requires. I’m sure eventually there will be a road block for the more aggressive (S&F++) and accuracy someone might require in their field/industry, but there is solutions for that, outside of C3D, that people have already taken when they reach that point and grown beyond the SO3 capabilities. I think ya’ll are staying in your market very well, and enriching it further.
I think that the Shapeoko accuracy and performance is very good but some people are running out of work area to undertake larger projects that will not fit the XXL and tiling is not always possible. I have such project on my plate and I will have to be very creative to complete the project. Having an upgrade path would probably be meeting a demand.