Assembly overview (SO1)

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These are the instructions for the SO1 and are here for historical reasons only.

If you are building an SO2, please see the instructions at

For an SO3, please see: Assembly.

Intro / Overview

File:Shapeoko Cover.png
(click the picture to download a PDF version of that page). Note: The image above doesn't show the M5 bolts, washers or insertion nuts for the belt anchors for the X-axis.

Simple overview of the entire process.

This should give you a basic idea of what tasks are involved in assembling your machine to the point that you can run the Hello World example.

  1. Take an inventory of your parts, Including the electronic components (you will need them all to complete the build)
  2. Verify you have all of the tools required
  3. Painting the plates are optional but you will appreciate it later
  4. Assemble the machine (you may need to Tap Your Makerslide extrusions)
  5. Connect your electronics
  6. Install your software
  7. Connect to your Arduino
  8. Jog Your Machine manually
  9. Run Hello World!
  10. Document your Hello World on the Hello World Page!

Wikis are great! They let us share our knowledge with each other, so we're going to attempt a 'hybrid' model of physical / wiki documentation. However, sometimes it's not convenient or logistically possible to have a computer where you are doing a major mechanical assembly. In an attempt to help everyone out, we're providing a basic set of build instructions in PDF format.

Download .pdf Link

You can download that document here.

Here's what we want you to do.

  1. Download the build instructions shown above. Print them out if you wish. (but please recycle when you're done.)
  2. Use the physical document to help guide you through the assembly.
  3. As you come across questions or problems do two things:
    1. Check the wiki for your answer. There is a link on the left side of the page that corresponds to each step in the process.
    2. If you can't find your answer on the wiki, ask it in the forum (we're very responsive!) --- After you have found the answer you're looking for, add it to the wiki!

See how that works? It's full circle!

Open Source Desktop Publishing

The source of the PDF instructions is in Scribus v1.4.1 and is available on github under the project's repository.

Because scribus is open source software, and cross platform compatible, everyone should be able to help out if that's their cup of tea.

Assembly Videos

There's a page of these, along with some useful notes, hints and tips here.


As with the rest of the pages on the wiki, please feel free to edit this one!

For the Inventables kit batches 2 and 3, please take note that the panels were different than pictured. The batch 1 panels were painted red, which interfered with hole sizes. Batches 2 and 3 have brushed stainless steel panels.

The panels have a protective film on one side that can be peeled off, and any residue left behind comes off easily with goo-gone or rubbing alcohol. Also note that there are small nubs on the surface from the plates left over from laser cutting. They can be removed, but will not interfere with assembly or use.

Major Components

There are three major components as shown in the table below (the mechanical kit, the electronics (E1--5) and a spindle). For more details see a list of vendors and complete Bill of Materials at Purchasing and an in-depth discussion of each component at Parts.

Part Cost Picture Buying options
Mechanical Kit $225 270px Several of the parts are custom pieces which are most readily purchased from as part of a Mechanical Kit, but CAD files are available on the Parts page so that one may fabricate them.
Electronics $158 50px 50px 50px 50px 50px The electronics for a standard machine comprise 5 components:
T1 - Spindle $30 200px A high-speed rotary tool is the classic choice for spindle, but there are many other options.

There are a number of other items which one will need, such as Zip ties or other fasteners, Electrical cable/wiring, some sort of cable management system, Endmills, Material for an electronic enclosure and some way to cool the stepper drivers such as a fan and/or heat sinks. Please see Additional / Commodity Items on the Purchasing page.


Only a few basic tools (some Allen keys, wrenches and a pair of pliers), and one specialty tap, as detailed on the Tools page, are needed to assemble a basic machine. A soldering iron may be needed if not purchasing a complete or premium kit with pre-wired electronics.

Suggestion: Visit The Forum For Questions

Like the Wikipedia, each page in this Wiki has an associated "Discussion" page, but this feature isn't as active as the forums. You can ask and answer questions about assembly in the Assembly section of the forum

Next: Electronics overview