Shapeoko 2 tabletop CNC machine

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The Shapeoko 2 is a tabletop CNC machine. It uses a rotary tool as its spindle, and is driven by an Arduino running the grbl firmware.

The Shapeoko 2 was donated to Twin Cities Maker by Instructables, its manufacturer.

Where it lives in the shop

The Shapeoko is on the table in the laser room. It is somewhat portable, so it can be moved around if the user desires, but it must be returned to the laser room after use.

Who can use it

The Shapeoko can be used by any member. Prior CNC experience is a plus, but is not required -- this is a good learning machine. If you've not done CNC before, pick up some cork at your favorite art/craft supplier, and run through the Getting Started tutorial on the Shapoko website.

Personal protective equipment

Safety goggles should be worn while using the Shapeoko. Ear protection might be needed, depending on the materials being cut.

Who's responsible for it

Scott Hill



Any software that generates standard G-Code can be used with the Shapeoko. You can use Universal G-Code Sender to send files to the Shapeoko, and also to manually control the head position.

You will need drivers for the Arduino's serial connection. The easiest way to get them is to install the Arduino IDE software.

For more information on software, see the software section of the Shapeoko documentation.

Hooking up the Shapeoko

Right now the Shapeoko does not have a dedicated computer -- you will need to use your own.

  1. Carefully move the electronics and wire harness off to the right side of the Shapeoko.
  2. Plug in the power supply brick and the rotary tool. WARNING: Do not attempt to plug the power supply into the Arduino's power plug! The Arduino draws its power from the USB connector.
  3. Connect the power supply's lead to the pigtail coming off of the driver shield. The blue power lamp on the shield should come on.
  4. Connect the USB cable to your computer. The three green lights on the driver shield should turn on.