CNC help needed for glassworks committee

To get it running, practically nothing. It has all the limit switches it needs. A cable carrier big enough to accommodate the three stepper motor cables, power cord to the router and limit switch cables. That’s everything I can see. I plan to feed it a g-code file in the next day or two but whoever set this up did a pretty good job so it’s just been a matter of plugging it in and attaching some wires that were pulled out. Perhaps some config tweaking in Linux CNC. Not sure what the history of this is but for a simple cnc router its in great shape.

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Glassworks was hugely expanded when we got a big donation of a glass studio, which included this CNC machine. DMS hasn’t done anything with this CNC since.

Dude’s kids said “Dad – no more glass”. Who knows what hobby he’s moved on to, since he’d gotten pretty good at this, and all the extra things as well.

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A small FYI: We have a diamond drag bit for the Shapeoko 2 (woodshop) and glass is allowed.


So far so good. As far as all the tests I’ve run, and a few configuration tweaks, this unit is working. Again, kudos to the original owner. A person after my own heart. Nice setup and only a few changes. Also, no z axis limit /homing switch but that is understandable because it is a bit of a puzzle. I have two possible solutions. If this is meant to cut glass, does anyone have a G code file I can use for a test? I loaded a G code tap file and it looked good, but it is always best to check against actual real time use. Or at least an idea of the purpose. Regardless, the final part I’m looking at is having the program control the spindle on/off with a ssr. Not trying to control spindle speed since that is way trickier but it makes sense to be able to slap an E-Stop button and have everything stop. This is just for basic function… the extra bells and whistles… those are extra.


@meanbaby – was this meant to cut glass? Or just engrave glass? Do we know?

I think it’s to etch glass. Sorry, I know very little about it. It was donated to the glass Dept and accepted by Kris A. And then sat in storage a couple years. Is what I was told.

as noted by Ian, the cnc can be used to do full cuts on the glass and it would make great pieces you normally cant. check out the imgur thread by clicking the picture in his post!


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I have pretty much finished with the Glassworks CNC machine. It works as intended and looks good on the tests I’ve run. I scavenged a few pieces from discarded laser works, donation shelves and a few bits I had laying around from previous projects. It looks respectably post apocalyptic … Mad Max would be happy to use this if he were into glass work. The cable management is good. There are still quite a few things it needs that I don’t have the authority to do.
The control box needs a place for it to be mounted. Some kind of system for holding a work piece in position needs to be incorporated.
Additionally, it need a few accessories: A parallel cable, computer monitor, power cord for the computer, computer mouse, a supply of 1/4" shaft router cutting bits and then you’re all set to cut wood. If you want to cut or engrave glass, don’t. There is currently no way to deal with the silica dust that would produce. There is a spare power plug on the controller that could be used to power a vacuum cleaner and building a collector similar to the one on the wood shop CNC router might be sufficient. There was a discussion thread about cutting glass underwater with scissors… yeah right! However, cutting under water with the router would contain the silica dust and cool the glass from any friction generated by the cutting bit and at least one of the You Tube videos on this subject does just that. Again, securing the work piece would have to be worked out as well as keeping the router dry, but all that is do-able.
Anyway, it’s ready to run.


awesome! thanks for working on it. I’ll see about buying some of the parts needed to get it going.


Thank you!