What other tools do you use the most with your X-Carve?

Curious to see recommendations and thoughts on what tools are helpful alongside your X-Carve?

My current list:
Dremel/Rotary tool
Belt/Disk Sander
Orbital hand sander
spindle sander
10in Miter/chop saw

Looking at black friday to add one more tool, either a table saw to help cut down material for the x-carve and larger projects, or a 12in sliding miter saw to trim down sign stock…or may say forget it and go for the Jtech laser:slight_smile:

I use this to cut the part tabs, saves tons of time

Also look into getting a band saw, being able to resaw your own lumber is a big cost saver. I can buy 4/4 or even 8/4 lumber and resaw to necessary thickness for much less than buying 1/4 or 1/2 inch stock.

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I do this with my table saw ( just up to 4 x 4 inch lumber )

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Most of the signs I make need at least 6 inch wide lumber, i can resaw up to 9 inch width.

My table saw scares me when the blade is over an inch high


I may have to look at a bigger bandsaw - mine will do about 6inches or so, having a bit more would open a lot of possibilities.

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Totally off topic:

When I was a kid we used a 3 foot diameter saw hooked to the rear wheel of an old pickup truck to turn trees into lumber.

Wouldn’t do it now on a bet.

end off topic


I use a whole bunch of sanding tools.
narrow belt sander
disk sander
random orbital sander
flex shaft sander
sandflee flat sander
Lately I have been craving a spindle sander.

I also use a scroll saw but lately I have been craving a band saw.

Another thing I am seriously considering is better dust collection and building an enclosure.

And now and again I see the forum posts regarding spindle upgrades and how quiet they are…


An X-acto knife with small razor saw blades for cutting tabs comes out for every project with tabs.

A deburring tool makes cleaning up metal and plastic parts quick and easy once one gets the hang of using it: http://www.homedepot.com/p/HDX-Deburring-Tool-HDX090/204218603 (listed at https://wiki.shapeoko.com/index.php/Tools#Additional_Tools )

I’ll often use a large flat file to clean up a cut surface and preserve its squareness/ improve on its flatness.

A contour or radius gauge when measuring parts for recreation, see: https://wiki.shapeoko.com/index.php/Designing_for_Fabrication#Duplication_of_arbitrary_shapes


I use my vacuum the most, dont always have to fire up the CNC in order to use it… :stuck_out_tongue:


A table saw is my main go to tool in the shop


Yeah - I’m debating on getting one I can afford now, or waiting and saving for a saw stop. But golly it’s a lot of cash…

@RobertLandrigan. Saw stop is great but I am keeping my old powermatic that I great up on as a kid

I have a DeWalt jobsite saw. Definitely worth the price.


I learned on my dad’s Powermatic, and it’s ruined me:) I can handle a lot of smaller tools, sometimes they’ve got their own advantages, but everything that isn’t that great big green beast with the huge table and customer fence is suuuuuuch a step down I’d rather not even bother.

I don’t like mix-matching brands soo…


  • Anova Precision Cooker - This or pretty much any other Sous Vide Cooker are, IMHO, the best kitchen invention ever - I once had to leave a piece of meat in it for 25h and it arrived as taste as it normally would have after 4h.

I have found some small files that I use for guitar building/repairs really handy for cleaning up carves on HDPE. Sometimes a wire brush. Most other machinery in my shop gets used sparsely since buying an x carve… spindle sander, router table, Dewalt Planer, Jet Thickness sander, and a Laguna 1412 Bandsaw, and standup drill press… Table saw would be nice but I had an accident and learned about kickback the hard way. Oh yeah cant forget the vacuum system that is running when the cnc is working.

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  • GlowForge laser cutter. (OK, maybe that’s pushing the definition of “tool” a little)
  • Just bought a small bandsaw that’s really helpful
  • Dremel with sanding and cutting bits - this never even gets put away anymore, I use it so often
  • Palm sander
  • Nokogiri, specifically a dozuki - makes beautiful cuts
  • Table saw, but it’s a monster and I use it as infrequently as I can
  • Various chisels

proxxon pencil sander
Once you use one you’ll love it.

not entirely sure on your price range, and alot of people are mentioning a table saw. My recommendation would be a plainer. I always use it to clean up the surfaces of hardwoods after resawing.