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Old 01-07-2021, 09:11 PM
Woodchrome Woodchrome is offline
CAMhead Guest
Join Date: Jan 2021
Posts: 2
Default Newbie: router vs spindle

Hi All,
Not totally new to CNC but skill level is limited to numeric code and just writing simple programs for the parts I make in wood and Various plastics. Iím hoping to work on designing at some point.

My other 2 mills are more of the standard vertical small table top and large cabinet top models. Great for metal and plastic but a big disappointment trying to mill thin sections of wood without chipping at the edge. Because Iím building precision parts for musical instruments I canít fudge by sanding out the corner chip. The other milll maxes out at 2000 rpm.

After a lot of investigating I came upon CAMaster. I figured why not check them out. My other CNC is a CNCMaster Baron Mill. I ordered Stinger 1 today with the Performance package and handheld controller.

I was interested in the spindle upgrade but canít see putting out $2k + without some feedback and better cash flow situation.

So who has owned both the standard router and 1hp spindle to give a review for future reference. Iím hoping the stock router is vibration free enough to be able to stick with that so I can afford other upgrades as needed down the road.

And BTW, Iím stabilizing the wood before milling.
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Old 01-09-2021, 11:49 AM
bmilam bmilam is offline
CAMhead Legend
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 271

I have seen many who use the routers and they are doing fine. If that is all that you can afford then go for it. I think you need to contact Camaster on the ability to add a spindle later on. I did not think that they offer any support for you to do the add on yourself later but could be wrong on that. Spindles are nice and especially quiet and I won't go back to a router myself but since I am not using the machine in a commercial setting I could have gotten by with a router but there will be the day that you regret not only getting a spindle but also an ATC spindle.
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Old 01-09-2021, 01:13 PM
gtgmarine gtgmarine is offline
CAMhead Friend
Join Date: Oct 2020
Location: Florida
Posts: 10

This question is asked a lot!
I also had the same question when putting together my Stinger 1 order.
Here's the best thread I've found on that question...

Also, as the previous poster mentioned, unfortunately it's non-trivial to upgrade your machine from a router to a spindle. If you think you'll want a spindle in the not too distant future you should order the machine with a spindle even though it's a lot more $$$.
Good luck.
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Old 01-09-2021, 01:20 PM
Jim Becker Jim Becker is offline
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: SE PA
Posts: 1,900

If you can afford it, buy the machine with the Spindle. It's worth the money. Quieter, smoother, speed control from the WinCNC software, better collet options than any router motor, and it will last a lot longer than a router motor, too, if you're doing any kind of work beyond incidental cutting.

On the quieter thing...yes, cutting is still noisy, but with a spindle, you're not combining the volume of a screaming universal router motor with the screaming of an endmill in a piece of wood. It really does make a difference. When cutting materials like plastic and sign foam, the machine is uber-quiet with a spindle.

And yea, conversion later isn't trivial nor will it be easy to integrate it as well as factory ordered.
Jim Becker

SR-44 (2018), 1.7kw spindle, Performance Premium, USB, Keypad, T-Slot table (y-axis configuration), WinCNC, VCarve Pro upgraded to Aspire

Non CNC stuff...

SCM/Minimax - slider/JP/BS
Festool "a good collection"
Stubby - lathe
Oneida Cyclone

Retired from full time work in the telecom industry 9/2017
Commission work for equestrian tack storage and other custom furniture and cabinetry
Located Bucks County PA
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Old 01-09-2021, 08:45 PM
Pete marken Pete marken is offline
CAMaster Owner
Join Date: Apr 2020
Location: Calera Alabama
Posts: 41

With my first CNC I had a 2-1/4 hp Porter Cable router on the machine After 3 months of almost daily use the bearings in the router failed. Wound up replacing with a water cooled chinese spindle. Also found the machine istself was not designed for prolonged use.
Stinger II SR44 with servos
Recoil Prep
3KW spindle
7 Watt Laser
Pro Option Pack
Hand Held Keypad
T-Slot Table with Vacuum Prep.
Aspire 10.5
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