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Pilot Pro CNC Routers and Projects

- Projects -

If you've made something cool (anything) or have a tip or tweak for something and want to show other people how to make one, we'd like to post it here in our projects section or post a link. Information on kits or parts for your projects is encouraged.

Controller box


Control the Machine and spindle or plasma torch with G-code. Turn the spindle or torch on and off and control the speed of the spindle using a PWM signal from the controller software. The controller box includes DeskCNC controller board with serial interface and full version of DeskCNC software, 4 Axis driver board with 4 - 305 oz in motors, 26Vdc - 14.6 Amp power supply, Spindle speed control relay and heat sink. CAD file, complete parts list, and details on the Pilot Pro CNC and Projects DVD.

Project box labels


Engrave panels
Use your CAD progam and printer to design labels for any project or engrave them.
Details are on the Pilot Pro CNC and Projects DVD.


The ArachnoBot is an easy to make robot project or develop your own design based on the CAD drawings. The parts are 3D maximizing functionality incorporated into the finished parts. These parts fit together to form the legs and body The CAD files are then used to machine the parts out of rigid plastic. Pockets and islands are integrated into the parts and used to accurately hold sensors, create joints for movements, set mechanical limits and channels are used to embed rotating parts and for toe sensor wires. The load bearing joints on the upper legs are mounted to the outside for maximum articulation of the leg and hip. Details on the Pilot Pro CNC and Projects DVD. For more information on this project please vist the ArachnoBot page.

LED Signs


Extremely bright, animated LED signs look incredible. These signs are hard to ignore and are visible for more than 200'. Custom signs like this will boost your sales INSTANTLY. LED signs save energy, last longer, and are more visible than neon signs. For a quote please email your request with a description of the sign you want to:

The LED SIGN DIY CNC router project shows a layout design for the LED's and runs them from a sequential circuit to animate, flash, flicker or whatever. The circuit uses the decade counter IC 4017 (~$1.49) to control the whole thing, no software required and the circuit is easy to build. You can use this type of controller for a number of projects. This circuit is capable of executing a number of logical functions and programming it for another task is as easy as rewiring the circuit.

This approach to controllers is much more advanced, robust, and flexible than the BEAM method developed at Los Alamos. Details on the
Pilot Pro CNC and Projects DVD.

Bending Polycarbonate

Bending the plastic in the desired shape can make the dust cover and many other parts for other projects.

The dust cover is made from 1/4" polycarbonate cutout on the CNC and the mounting tab needs to be bent 90 degrees. This is done using the plastic bending heater shown on the left. Use this heater to bend plastic into any useful shape. The plastic bending heater can be made for less than $20.00. Details are on the
Pilot Pro CNC and Projects DVD.

Working with Gears

Mating a worm and gear is easy and has many advantages.

Movie of the motor and gears in action Click here







This is a prototype of a motor and gear arrangement. It outputs a 16 to 1 reduction from the drill motor transmission. Large gear reductions using a worm and gear can be made in a small space. The worm can not be driven backwards, this means once the motor gets to a position no energy is needed to hold it there. The system will not collapse when power is removed. Because this worm is made from a heavy spring the system can take a lot of shock without damage and the worm gear will hold some potential energy as well. 

MegaBot - Leg or Arm Example

MegaBot - Limb In Action Movie1 Movie2

This prototype is a large limb powered by drill motors. The drill motors are servoed to position using potentiometers or encoders to close the loop. The hip has a 24 to 1 gear ratio and the knee is using a 16 to 1 gear ratio. The length of the upper leg is 8" from hip joint to knee joint and the lower leg is 13" long for a total length of 21 inches. The touch toe sensor or hand manipulator will be added next. Plans and kits will be offered soon. If you would like to be notified of updates on this project please join our MegaBot email list by sending an email to:

This list is only used to send update notifications on this project.

A Axis - the fourth axis

Start with a surplus rotary table (~$50), make a few modifications and it works great with a CNC. This rotary table comes with a DC motor and a large gear reduction. The DC motor and some of the gears are removed and replaced with a stepper motor. The pinion gear shaft is modified with a lathe to fit a 1/4" coupler. A NEMA 23 motor mount attaches to the existing gear case. The mounting bracket for the rotary table is pocketed so the rotary table sits flush with the bracket. Add a fourth driver, setup the software and start turning! Details are on the Pilot Pro CNC and Projects DVD.

Rack and Pinion - rotary to linear motion

Click image for video

The rack and pinion shown has a 17.5 pressure angle and is cut from 1/2" thick HDPE. It is used to convert rotary motion to linear motion in a variety of devices. Click the second image to see the pinion roll down the rack and note how smooth the pinion gear rolls and meshes with the rack. The rack is 12 inches long. The rack length is adjusted by adding as many racks as required for the desired length. Details are on the Pilot Pro CNC and Projects DVD.

Wooden Gear Clocks

Surface Grinder

A surface grinder can easily be made from a few basic parts. The grinder is suspended from the frame and the height is adjusted using a Z height adjustment knob. The table moves in the X and Y axes and uses modified drawer slides. Video of the XY table. Details are on the Pilot Pro CNC and Projects DVD.

Mini Pan Brake

A Mini Pan Brake that is used for bending 1/8" aluminum, 1/4" plastic, or sheet metal. This is easy to make for less than $50. The Mini Pan Brake is easy to use and gives great results. Shown is a piece of 1-1/2" X 1/8" aluminum bent 90 degrees. Details are on the Pilot Pro CNC and Projects DVD.

Floating Pen Holder

A Floating Pen Holder turns the CNC into a plotter. This pen holder holds a variety of pens and floats up and down to match the contour of the work material. Use it to draw circuits on copper, write on display panels, test your files, or learn about CNCing. Easy to build and fun to use. Details are on the Pilot Pro CNC and Projects DVD.

Different machines you can build from the plans on the Pilot Pro CNC and Projects DVD.

CNC Stands - Wood and Plasma

Easy to build CNC stand designs to support your CNC machine. Build either the wood version or the metal version or both. Full details for building both stands are on the Pilot Pro CNC and Projects DVD.

New design made possible with the Pilot Pro CNC. If you can think it you can make it.

Ribs made from Douglas fir 1/2" thick and 40" long.
This project is still under construction so check back to see more developments.