ShoeboxCNC. They better bring the price down before returning to kickstater... (via SBCNC)
Sometimes finding the right place to get started with robotics can be hard. You may have an idea of what you want to make, but choosing the right parts and all the accessories can be a bit overwhelming for beginners. This is why starter kits and bundles can be popular items. One of the latest kits being put together is an Ardunio controlled CNC robot. Currently on Kickstarter, the Shoebox CNC robot (SB-1) will be easily put together using cardboard pieces, or as the name implies, using a shoebox.
It will work by using a custom Ardunio shield for controlling 3 different motors. Additionally, it will work with quadrature encoders for each motor and limit switches. An H-bridge motor will also be available for powering an additional item. The motors that will come with the kit are custom made with quadrature encoders integrated into their structure. According to their Kickstarter page, the motors will be accurate with up to sub-millimeter precision.
Open source software is also being developed for easy control. Using a PC or MAC, movements for vector drawings and possibly g-code will be possible. Their page also states that they will be working to get software for LinxCNC working, as well as Scratch and Processing coding environments.
If interested in the ShoeboxCNC kit, there are many different options currently available on Kickstarter. For $45 you can get the Arduino shield previously mentioned. For $85 you can get the shield plus an Arduino and power supply. And for $250 you can get the entire kit with motors, wood, and cardboard materials. This kit will be great for getting people started with CNC robotics. However, I think their price may set them back a little bit. Paying $250 for an entire kit which will really only let you draw or paint shapes is a bit too much. On the plus side, it does give people a great idea on how to turn a useless box into something fun.
Although the project was cancelled… It will be back.
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