Z axis height

Has anyone attempted a Z-axis height upgrade? I figure just a little thicker and a few inches taller on the y plates, a longer rod and longer z axis makerslide. Should be easy enough, the only thing is where to get longer bits. Am I missing anything else that would be needed?

As far as I can tell that, it is made by purpose. If you try cutting 3" deep material and you have 300w spindle, first you don’t have strong enough spindle to run continiously for over an hour. Yes I’ve seen couple of guys were change the original design like adding longer rails, taller Z axis, but remember, moding comes with problems after problems. You must take all necessary steps to enlarge capabilities of carving machine, get ready for spending time and money to have CNC milling machine. I say I can’t make it, at least belt driving system allowance.


Here is a link to my build log with all the mods I will be doing to my machine that is in the UPS truck as I type.


@BrianSaban I am in the Electronic Manufacturing industry, and I want to modify the Z axis as well to increase the travel. We won’t be using a spindle, but will be mounting a camera in its place.

My current plan is to install a longer Z-axis makerslide and a longer Lead Screw, and that’s it. Anyone see any problems with this? Any idea on potentially how high I could make the Z axis go?

If you want your camera to raise higher than the standard Z+ travel allows there should be no problem putting a longer piece of MS in place of the 200mm stock piece.
How high above the work surface do you want the camera to be.


I am looking to accomplish 18" of travel from the lowest point to the highest, so an additional 14" of MS and lead screw is what I’m planning for at this stage.

I also assume there will be too much weight with the carriage at the highest point (with a camera mounted to it), which may induce some wobble when moving along the X-axis, so I’m not entirely hopeful. If I can get 12" of total travel, then it’s still an improvement.

Are you talking about a DSLR or a small Iphone type camera. You could put back stays from the top of the MS to the far corners of the carrage to give more stiffness to the MS. Just like they do on a sail boat mast.
How far away from the Z carrage will the camera be mounted. As close as possible or will it be out 6" so the MS is not in the field of view when the camera is at the top of travel.
Do you also need pan and tilt for the camera.

If this is a fixed system where the work comes to the system there may be other ways to do a flying camera. One way is a 3 cable winch system that will move the camera in X Y and Z.

It is all doable it just depends on your needs. What are you taking photos or video of?