Contemplating x carve

Hi guys. I’m new to cnc’s. I have just come across the x carve and it looks great.

I have a few questions:

  1. What type of drive rail does it have? Does it use a ball screw?
  2. Can it get through 19mm pvc foam board? Dibond?
    Also what are maximum thickness materials? Would upgrading to nema23s allow thicker?
  3. Where in the UK can I purchase one?
  4. What type of warrenty comes with it?
  5. Promise it’s the last, would you say it’s good for regular use? probably about 10 hours a week? On things like foam board, 10mm acrylic etc?

Hi Angus.
Thanks for your prompt response.

  1. Are the belts okay with the Backlash? Can they be replaced with the ball screws, ive been told the ball screws are better?

  2. (Sorry, i know, its part a, b, c… ).

Again much appreciated for the response… i am so tempted to drop the order :smiley:


I presume you cant “upgrade” the x-carve?

I am like you, i prefer sweating a bit which save the cash, and your right with the price.

Would you definitely reccomend the x-carve;? I am so tempted to put the order in this evening.

Is like Angus said, if you like to mess around with machines and be on top of them until they perform the way you want them to, go for it. I was so excited to get mine but my mistake was that I work with a 14 year old Gerber profile everyday( which it cost at that time $50,000) and never give us any type of problems whatsoever. I never worked/owned a cnc prior to working with the Gerber at work. Did a little research on the xcarve and the price was too good, so I bought it. That was like 4 months ago, still not dialed in just right. I kind of got disappointed so I don’t mess around with it much. I wasn’t expecting performance like the Gerber but I didn’t want to spent so much time messing with it to get descent cuts. Good thing that I didn’t buy it to make a living. If you want something better, you gotta pay the cash! Plus, don’t forget about the assembly! That would be at least 2 headaches, lol. Sometimes I wanna sell mine but to be honest with you, I might miss it plus I enjoy this forum. I guess it depends on how bad you need it/want it. I just wish I had the patience that some of this guys have to spent countless hours ( which I have already before I got so frustrated ), on it so it can be just right, maybe one day, lol.

I bought the Shapeoko 2 a year ago after much research. Being a kit was not intimidating to me and I enjoyed building it. I think the effort taught me more than taking a complete unit out of a box and turning it on. It took a little while to get it tuned but that was, in large part, the learning process with me starting from scratch. The original kit I bought had NEMA23 steppers in it. The first ‘major’ update I did was changing to 9mm belts; there was some occasional slippage with the 6mm belts. Several weeks ago, I bought the XCarve upate kit for SO2, mainly for the extruded gantry. Now, with the more stable gantry and my 9mm belts, I get even better cuts than before.

As to whether or not you can upgrade an XCarve, the way I see it is that you can always upgrade virtually anything. You will be starting with a good machine that might do all you need. If you need or want additional capability, there are ways to get there.


If you decide to get yourself a X-Carve do yourself a favour and read up on the various troubleshooting posts on this forum.

I got my machine in september last year and really benefited from having read extensively about other people’s problems before mine arrived. Have had very little trouble myself since, what little fuss there has been have quickly been resolved with the help of the awesome people on this forum. It was truly an advantage to be aware of many common pitfalls before the machine arrived.

Best of luck, man. Hope to see you post pictures of your very own dust cloud generator! :smile: