Z-Carve not maintaining consistent depth

Ok I’ve had my machine 750x750 stock no upgrades for a couple years with no issues then today I did a carve in easel It seems when it gets in the top right corner the depth goes shallow. I think it’s mechanical because I ran it 2x with the same result on both higher up on the board. I placed a level on my board and it seems level and not enough for it to just not cut. I’m cutting cabinet grade plywood with a 90deg v-bit

Have you checked the Z-Axis pulley set screw?


Brandon Parker

Yes it’s tight

Maybe place the machine in the opposite corner and measure the distance to the waste-board. Without moving the Z-Axis, move the machine to the troubled corner and measure the distance to the waste-board.

Also, could it be the material that is not exactly true to dimension across it?

If the distances are the same and the material checks out then you are likely missing a step, but that sure looks like something is not true to the Z-Axis (i.e. the material is not true across its breadth or the waste-board is not true with the Z-Axis) … That is unless you have a rail that is loose or something like that on the troubled corner.


Brandon Parker

Thanks Brandon I’ll try that in the morning.

Most likely slight height difference across the wasteboard AND/OR variations of material thickness.
Another component may aswell be what Brandon mention.

Such carvings like this one is very telling of height deviations.


Ok after playing with it. I have realized my front left corner is high spotted. Going down towards the back and right side. I’ve adjusted and gotten it up a little but its still definitely a noticeable gap to me. My OCD says .04 inches at the very back is to much from front to back. I’m thinking If I resurface that will take that out. What do you all think?

Resurfacing the spoilboard with the X-Carve itself should give you a spoilboard that is true to your machine’s Z-Axis and is ideally what you want.


Brandon Parker

It is normal, it is hard to have a completely leveled machine, not at the X-Carve price range and cut area. Resurfacing the wasteboard might help, but the true solution is something like:

I have used it to generate “adjusted G-Codes” that adapt to the surface.

@EthanKinney pointed me to this software, and it is awesome! I had to cut a thin sheet of aluminium and I was getting the same problems you experience with that carve.

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Totally agree with @eried, I use OpenCNCPilot for every carve I do.

Thanks everyone for the helpful ideas. I went ahead and resurfaced and it worked perfectly. Ended up on taking .05in off.


thanks a lot for updating. taking in consideration that i have a similar problem with my food recipes project, will try doing the same.
hopefully it would work tomorrow.