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shopbot-cnc-x Custom Projects Using our CNC Router

Custom Projects Using our CNC Router

Although I share the majority of our projects done at made using our Austrian industrial wide-format CNC laser, we also use our CNC router for quite a few projects too. does more than just play music with our ShopBot Desktop as a CNC router can leave our Austrian CNC laser in the dust for particular applications, whether they be material specs or finished esthetics.

We do have plans to get a larger machine, this is where CNC routers really excel but our little guy is pretty good for the vast majority of our current production needs.

shopbot-desktop Custom Projects Using our CNC Router

For instance, full-sized furniture can easily be made using this small format, it isn’t the most efficient when compared to a full sheet machine but we aren’t stuck either.

The major advantage of having a ShopBot CNC router though is how it can feed unique products through to our industrial laser, or vice versa depending on the application.

shopbot-desktop Custom Projects Using our CNC Router

Jon in Make Magazine, Volume 40, page 19

Using the “best of both worlds” allows us to make incredible work efficiently and cost effectively in unlimited volumes.

Although the format of the bed seems small, it’s pretty big and the above videos showcases just an idea of what we are capable using ONLY our ShopBot for projects.

shopbot-desktop Custom Projects Using our CNC Router

Notice the edge quality is not burned, as it would be from our CNC laser due to the method used to cut and engrave material.

The above video showcases what would be impossible for instance, to do with our laser, not due to power but due to the two-way feedback the CNC router bit has with the material while the laser has no such capability.

shopbot-desktop Custom Projects Using our CNC Router

CNC routers are precise on the Z axis as a result, while Z axis results on a laser are more based on material density and focus.

The sharpness of ourĀ Trotec Laser on Corian though isn’t possible to achieve using our CNC router, so in this case, using the CNC router to cutout the outline cost effectively while using the laser for paint filling very sharp details works perfectly.

shopbot-desktop Custom Projects Using our CNC Router

Another feature is speed, for instance, the following Pine cutting board just isn’t possible using our industrial laser with the same quality cut and finish.

Additionally, doing inside pockets and dimensional work is technically possible using our industrial CNC laser but in reality, our CNC router is a better tool for the job, especially when volume is concerned.

But if you wanted your cottage engraved into almost photographic quality on the wood, a CNC router can’t do the job as clearly without an incredible amount of image optimization and even then, unless it’s a large-scale, looks better when done with our industrial CNC laser rather than CNC router.

Here’s another project that showcases the strength of using both tools to create something amazing for our customers using the advantages of both tools, custom-house number signs made out of Cedar (though that can be any material) where the material is too thick to be cut with the laser cost effectively without burning it to ashes.

Again, for Corian, where the material is incredibly hard and tough, our ShopBot CNC router excels over our CNC laser to cut the outline and create a slight bevel accurately.

shopbot-desktop Custom Projects Using our CNC Router

Of course, the sharpness, that’s done using our CNC laser for paint filing.

There is no one tool better than another, for instance, we also have a fantastic wood and another for metal bandsaw, you can’t resaw wood using a CNC laser or CNC router.

This tool couldn’t be any different but what this allows us to do is create our own wood to spec using larger lumber to break it down.

shopbot-desktop Custom Projects Using our CNC Router

Here’s a project, a custom bookmark, that uses our CNC laser and bandsaw, if the Oak was thicker, then we’d have to cut the outline using our CNC router, as it’s more accurate and quicker production wise than cutting one at a time using our bandsaw.

I hope this helps outline our capabilities here at and how they allow us to create projects and ship them out generally within 24 hours (depending on material and volume).

There is no one tool better at the exclusion of the other, it all depends on the spec, material and design you wish to have made.