WorkBee V3 Mechanical Kit – Customisable

The Maker Hardware WorkBee V3 is the latest and most robust WorkBee model available. Put together the machine YOU want step by step by selecting the size and transmission for each axis.

 A mechanical kit includes all the mechanical components needed to build your CNC Machine; All the screwsnutswheelsplateswashers, etc. A Mechanical Kit is undoubtedly a perfect choice if you plan on bringing your own CNC Controller, Stepper Motors, or other Electronics.

Unsure about the different options offered? Please scroll down the page past the options selector to read all about the customisable options and feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions along the way!
Email:       team@makerstore.cc
Phone:    (513) 760-6253

Description

How To Select Your Machine:

Please Note: Any machine with a 2650mm Axis is not covered by our shipping calculator. You can still proceed with the order throughout the checkout.  We will then contact you with a shipping quote for the 2650mm extrusion.

Step 1: X-Axis Length

In this step, you are selecting what length you want your X-Axis to be. The X-Axis is the suspended axis with the gantry that moves in the left-to-right direction.

Step 2: Y-Axis Length

In this step, you are selecting what length you want your Y-Axis to be. The Y-Axis is the dual actuator that runs in the front-to-back direction.
If increasing the length of the machine to 2650mm to work on full sheets, we recommend the Y-Axis is the 2650mm length. This is because the Y-Axis is supported along the length by the spoiler board which makes a very strong and sturdy 2650mm axis.

Step 3: X-Axis Transmission

In this step, you are selecting what transmission you want to drive your X-Axis.
Lead Screw is available in 1000mm and 1500mm. Gear Rack is available in 1000mm, 1500mm
For Precision and Torque, we recommend Lead Screw,  for high speed, we Gear Rack.

Step 4: Y-Axis Transmission

In this step, you are selecting what transmission you want to drive your Y-Axis.
Lead Screw is available in 1000mm and 1500mm. Gear Rack is available in 1000mm, 1500mm and 2650mm
For Precision and Torque, we recommend Lead screws,  for high speeds, and long lengths, Gear Rack.

Step 5: Frame Colour

In this step, you are selecting the colour of the extrusion. The options are Silver or Black.
If you have a 2650mm axis then only Silver can be chosen.

Step 6: X-Axis C-Beam Extrusion

In this step, you are selecting what C-Beam Extrusion you will install on the X-Axis (left-to-right). The C-Beam Extrusions is the main beam that the gantry runs along.
We recommend C-Beam HEAVY for the X-Axis.

Step 7: Y-Axis C-Beam Extrusion

In this step, you are selecting what C-Beam Extrusion you will install on the Y-Axis (front-to-back). The C-Beam Extrusions is the main beam that the gantry runs along.
We recommend Standard C-Beam for the Y-Axis.
If have a 2650mm axis then only Standard C-Beam can be chosen.

Step 8: Stepper Motor

In this step, you are selecting what Stepper Motor you want to install on the machine. If you are using your own Nema23 Stepper Motors you can choose “No Stepper Motor”.
You can choose any motors if you have Standard C-Beam and Lead Screw transmission.
You can only choose No Stepper Motors or High Torque Stepper Motors if you have C-Beam HEAVY or Gear Rack transmission.

9: Review and Purchase:

This is the last stage of the selector. Here you review your chosen options as well as the price of the components. You can go back and edit the options you have selected.
NOTE: If you go back and edit the options then you will need to go through the following steps again as the available options may have changed.

If you have any questions along the way!
Email:      Team@makerstore.cc
Phone:     (513) 760-6253
(Please leave a voice message with your name, number and preferred callback time. We will return your call)


What is a Mechanical Kit?

Assembly Manual Photo LinkThe mechanical kit is the foundation of your CNC Machine. A mechanical kit includes all the mechanical components needed to build your CNC Machine; All the screwsnutswheelsplateswashers, etc. A Mechanical Kit is undoubtedly a perfect choice if you plan on bringing your own CNC Controller, Stepper Motors, or other Electronics. CNC Add-Ons Packs are required to complete a CNC Machine. These Add-ons include the electronic system that will control the machine, cable management, and the tool that will be mounted to the machine.


About the WorkBee V3

The WorkBee CNC Machine was originally designed by Ryan Lock of Ooznest UK. It is a strong, accurate and easy assemble CNC machine. This WorkBee V3 is the Maker Hardware kit based on the popular WorkBee CNC Machine design. The Maker Hardware WorkBee V3 CNC is an upgrade to our WorkBee V2.2. This new Version 3 model is heavily modified to achieve better results. It is important to note that the new upgrade is VERY different to the Ooznest or other manufacturer’s models. The Maker Hardware WorkBee V3 has two interchangeable transmission systems allowing for a high level of customisation as well as axis compatibility with up to 2.65m in length, allowing for full timber sheets to be worked on!

 

The WorkBee V3 is incredibly simple to assemble and is suitable for milling wood, foam, plastic, soft metals and more. The WorkBee V3 CNC Machine is a 4 axis (3 + 1) machine, this means there are 3 physical axes (X, Y, Z) and a slave axis of Y which is called the A-Axis.

This is a perfect router for the hobby woodworker who wants to get into CNC woodworking. The WorkBee V3 is easily customised and adaptable, all parts of the machine are generic and modular encouraging additions and alterations after the initial mechanical build. Every WorkBee is packed with off the shelf parts, every part is available individually from Maker Store.

The WorkBee is our most customisable CNC machine and can be supplied in almost any size imaginable. If the application requires a cutting area of larger than 1.5m the WorkBee V3 is our solution.

About the Tool Mounted to the Machine

The WorkBee V3 Z-Axis is designed to carry up to 5kg. This is perfectly suited for Lasers, Plasma Torches and most Routers and Trimmers (Makita, Dewalt, Bosch etc..).

As well to the tools mentioned above, the WorkBee V3 is designed to mount the Spindles we offer;
All 400W Spindles, 800W Spindles and 1.5kW Er11 Air-Cooled Spindles which generally weigh between 1-4kg are perfectly suited to the machine.

 

Approximate Cutting Area (mm)

Different types of limit switches and other components may affect the working area

Machine Size (mm) X-Axis Y-Axis

Z-Axis (With 12mm Wasteboard)

Machine Footprint (not including motors)
X-Axis: 1000
Y-Axis: 1000
800 820 110 1000 x 1000
X-Axis: 1000
Y-Axis: 1500
800 1320 110 1000 x 1500
X-Axis: 1500
Y-Axis: 1000
1300 820 110 1500 x 1000
X-Axis: 1500
Y-Axis: 1500
1300 1320 110 1500 x 1500
X-Axis: 1000
Y-Axis: 2650
800 2470 110 1000 x 2650
X-Axis: 1500
Y-Axis: 2650
1300 2470 110 1500 x 2650

The WorkBee has two different transmission systems available

1: Lead Screw Transmission System

Lead Screw machines are designed to achieve high-resolution levels and great repeatability. It also requires little ongoing maintenance, with nut-blocks often having a functional life of longer than 3 years if the machine is taken care of.  Lead Screw transmission combined with a bipolar stepper motor has a resolution of 0.04mm without any microstepping settings. Considering 1/4 set in your microstepping settings, the same Lead Screw can provide 0.01mm resolution.

All of our Lead Screws are specialised ACME thread TR8x8(P2), in basic terms, this means one revolution of the Lead Screw will make nut-block travel four times further than a standard threaded rod which is only a single start. Furthermore, this precision trapezoidal (metric) lead screws’ pitch and diameter are a perfect combination of high torque and speed.

While you can select whether or not you want Lead Screws on the X and Y-Axis on the WorkBee V3, the Z-axis is equipped with a Lead Screw Transmission System as the only option for two reasons:

1. Low speed and high resolutions are required for most applications such as Lasers, Plasmas, CNC and 3D printers.

2. The Lead Screw needs tangential force to cause motion and with this characteristic, your spindle will hold in place when the motors aren’t energised

Microstepping Lead Screw Tr8x8(P2)
   Full 0.040mm
   1/2 0.020mm
   1/4 0.010mm
   1/8 0.005mm
   1/16 0.003mm
   1/32 0.001mm

2: Rack and Pinion Transmission System

The MOD1.0 Internal Gear Rack was designed right here in house at Maker Store. Our Gear Racks are designed specifically to allow for continuous lengths by butt-joining multiple racks in succession. With this feature, there is almost no limit to how long your axis can be!

The Internal Gear Rack is designed to slide inside the channel of our V-Slot Linear Rail and works with all our different V-Slot profiles. Along the X and Y-Axis, the WorkBee can benefit from the stronger C-Beam Extrusion, which also helps to keep the gear hidden away from dust. The Stepper Motor is attached to a specially designed plate that is installed spring-loaded and mounted to keep the right amount of tension between the Gear and the Rack.

Module 1.0 Gear Resolution table:

Microstepping
Note: We generally recommend 1/8
                                                                                            Gear Size
16T (Used in the WorkBee V3) 20T 32T 40T
FULL 0.25mm 0.31mm 0.50mm 0.63mm
 1/2 0.13mm 0.16mm 0.25mm 0.31mm
 1/4 0.06mm 0.08mm 0.13mm 0.16mm
 1/8 0.03mm 0.04mm 0.06mm 0.08mm
  1/16 0.02mm 0.02mm 0.03mm 0.04mm
  1/32 0.01mm 0.01mm 0.02mm 0.02mm

Note: The 1.0 Gear Resolution Table is based on a bipolar Stepper motor (200 steps/rev).


Expanding The Working Area To Do Full Sheets

A key feature of our new Maker Hardware WorkBee V3 is the newly designed system which allows the machine to be built large enough to work on full sheets of timber. Both the Y-Axis and the X-Axis can be installed up to 2650mm in length. We generally recommend installing the 2650mm axis on your Y-Axis and installing your X-Axis as 1500mm which will allow you to work on full sheets. The reason for this is the Y-Axis spoiler board supports change for a machine larger than 1500mm. For a 2650mm Y-Axis, the spoiler board supports are transversal meaning they are secured to each Y-Axis C-Beam along the length of the Y-Axis which makes for a very strong and secure Y-Axis while also making several supporting beams for the workpiece to be placed on.

If installing a 2650mm X-Axis, we highly recommend upgrading the X-Axis C-Beam extrusion to our C-Beam HEAVY extrusion.

 

On a larger Y-Axis, the Internal Gantry Plate and the second row of wheels are removed to allow spoiler board supports to be secured between each Y-Axis C-Beam so that the axis is supported along its entire length rather than suspended from each side as in the smaller machine design.

The WorkBee V3 has built on this tried-and-tested reliable design while also strengthening the X and Z-Axis so that Spindles can be mounted to the machine in place of standard routers as in our Ox-GEAR. The new WorkBee V3 has become our recommended “Full Sheet Working” machine while staying a fraction of the cost of other machines on the market that can achieve full sheet working areas.


Key New Features

While there are so many different features, below are some of the Key Features that are new on the WorkBee V3.


Y-Axis Plates for Interchangeable Transmission System

The new WorkBee V3 Y-Axis Plate design allows interchangeability between two distinct transmission systems. You can easily build your machine to be Rack & Pinion or Lead Screw & Nut Block Transmission System.

The Lead Screw & Nut Block transmission is compatible with the Y-Axis length of 1000mm and 1500mm. Lead Screws are best used on a 1000mm Axis. A Lead Screw & Nut Block transmission offers a strong and accurate transmission while having very little ongoing maintenance required.

The Gear Rack and Pinion transmission is compatible with any Y-Axis length, it can even be installed on a 2.65-meter Y-Axis! We generally recommend Gear Rack and Pinion transmission for a 2650mm Y-Axis. Gear Rack and Pinion transmission allow for higher speeds to be achieved with no loss in accuracy.

With both systems being able to be installed onto the Y-Axis Plates, upgrading the length and transmission of your Y-Axis, later on, is very easily achieved due to the modular nature of our hardware.


X-Axis Plates for Interchangeable Transmission System

Similar to the Y-Axis Plates, the new WorkBee V3 X-Axis Plate design allows interchangeability between two distinct transmission systems. You can easily build your machine to be Rack & Pinion or Lead Screw & Nut Block Transmission System.

Lead Screw & Nut Block are best used on a 1000mm Axis. A Lead Screw & Nut Block transmission offers a strong and accurate transmission while having very little ongoing maintenance required. Gear Rack and Pinion transmission is generally recommended for 1500mm Axis. If installing a 2.65-meter X-Axis it is best to pair the Gear Rack system with our C-Beam HEAVY over such a long suspended length.


X-Axis and Y-Axis Length Up To 2.65 Meters

Both the Y-Axis and the X-Axis can be installed up to 2650mm in length. This is such a huge leap forward in this class of CNC Routers as it now allows full timber sheets to be worked on with no more tiling! 

The best “Full Sheet” machine configuration in our opinion is a 2650mm Y-Axis with Standard C-Beam and a 1500mm X-Axis with C-Beam HEAVY.

We recommend choosing the Y-Axis to be the 2650mm axis because the spoiler board extrusions are installed in a transversal manner so that they secure the Y-Axis along the length which makes for a very strong and secure Y-Axis. With this design standard C-Beam is perfect for the application, C-Beam HEAVY is not necessarily required on the 2650mm Y-Axis (but it sure is tough when installed!)

When installing a 2650mm X-Axis we strongly recommend upgrading the X-Axis C-Beam to C-Beam HEAVY. The reason for this is the X-Axis sits suspended from each end between each Y-Gantry Plate where it is secured. Over a 2650mm length, the standard C-Beam may ‘flex’ or ‘twist’ if a heavier spindle. If installing a 2650mm X-Axis we recommend a smaller tool such as a Laser, Plasma Torch, Router/Trimmer or Light Spindle (such as the 400W, 800W).


C-Beam End Plates

The End Plates that are mounted to the ends of the C-Beam Extrusion on the Y-Axis have been changed from unique WorkBee Plates to our new Standardised C-Beam End Mount Plates designed to mount to C-Beam and C-Beam HEAVY profiles.

This small but simple change makes the WorkBee more modular in design by using more off-the-shelf parts in lieu of unique parts.

This helps keep the WorkBee V3 End Plates in line with other C-Beam based CNC Machines such as the Lead CNC, C-Beam Machine, C-Beam XL and MiniMill.


Strong M8 Hardware On Weight Bearing Wheels

The top rows of V-Wheels on both the Y-Axis and the X-Axis have been upgraded to use M8 Screws and larger bearings inside the wheels.

The weight load and downward forces of the machine are placed on the top rows of wheels, with the bottom rows of wheels in place to adjust tension. For this reason, the top rows of wheels have been upgraded to a larger stronger screw series.

By upgrading the top rows of wheels from M5 hardware to M8 hardware a stronger axle is created. This is a great and effective improvement to increase the rigidity of the assembly while also reducing ‘flex’ in the assembly.


Z-Axis with MGN 15 Rails and Bearings

MGN Rails are a low profile version of the well known HGR rails. The New Z-Axis uses High-Quality MGN Series Linear Rails and MGN15C Bearings. This combination of rail and bearings offers high rigidity and precision accuracy in linear motion. Used in 3d Printing, CNC Machining, Robotics, Measuring Equipment and linear motion actuators.

The WorkBee V3 takes advantage of the low profile MGN rails that are responsible for keeping the centre of gravity as close as possible to the X-Axis gantry. This simple “trick” mitigates the X-Axis from twisting and causes less stress on the Y-Axis wheels.


Cap Head Screws – Also known as Socket Head Screws

The WorkBee V3 has upgraded any screw that does not need to have the Low Profile Head to the Stronger Cap Head Screw.

This simple upgrade makes the assembly of the machine much easier as it minimises the risk of stripping the head of the screw.


Jaw Couplings

Jaw Couplings have been used to connect all Stepper Motors to Lead Screws.

Jaw Couplings are stronger and longer-lasting by design when compared to their Flexible Coupling cousins.

Jaw Couplings are more precise in acceleration and deceleration.

Jaw Couplings have less backlash than Flexible Couplings.


Lead Screw Tensioning Nut

The WorkBee V3 has upgraded the outer locking collars that hold tension on the lead screw to the new Lead Screw Tensioning Nuts.

This specially designed nut when installing a Lead Screw in tension helps reduce Lead Screw ‘whip’ which occurs in Lead Screws with lengths greater than 1000mm. Installing the nut onto a Lead Screw helps ensure your machine runs smoothly at higher feed rates.

 

CREDITS:

The New Maker Hardware WorkBee V3 is substantially different to all other WorkBee models as well as its predecessors. The machine was inspired by the Lead CNC, the Ox-GEAR, and the earlier WorkBee models. Without these previous machines that came before the WorkBee V3, the machine would not be possible.

  • The WorkBee V3 Pates were designed by Maker Store. This design allowed for a gear rack and pinion transmission system on the X-Axis and Y-Axis.
  • The Internal MOD 1.0 Gear Rack was designed by Maker Store.
  • Ox-GEAR CNC and Ox V4 CNC were designed by Maker Store.
  • C-Beam HEAVY was designed by Maker Store.
  • Ox V1 (belt) was designed by OpenBuilds USA
  • C-Beam was designed by OpenBuilds USA
  • WorkBee V1 was originally designed by Ooznest UK

Please note the Maker Store WorkBee V3 is heavily customised and upgraded to the original design by Ooznest. WorkBee V3 is different to all other company’s “WorkBee Variants”.

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