RESOURCES

I think one of the best ways I can help is to create a resource page that you can always come to for the best tools. I’ll add to it as I learn more, but you’ll notice that in the future I will reference this page quite often. I recommend bookmarking it for your reference and convenience. Enjoy!

Disclosure: Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase. Please understand that I have experience with all of these companies, books, tools and I recommend them because they are helpful and useful, not because of the small commissions I make if you decide to buy something. Please do not spend any money on these products unless you feel you need them or that they will help you achieve your goals.

MY MOST RECOMMENDED

If you look at nothing else on this page, these are the resources that you should know about. I find myself recommending these resources again and again, in emails and on podcasts. I use them because they make my life easier, and I’m confident you’ll agree too.
The Triple Edge Finder is one tool I can't live without. The Makers Guide Triple Edge Finder is the only tool that will let you find your work piece zero position in all 3 axis and accurately locate your starting point in event of mishap while cutting. The TEF works with Mach3 probing screensets. It will save you time, stop wasting material and give you peace of mind. Triple Edge Finder
Vectric Cut2D is the entry level software many people start with. It is easy to use and allows you to drill holes, Create pocket cuts, profile cuts, Image tracing, inlay tool paths and engraving. Import 2D data (DXF, DWG, EPS, AI, PDF, SKP etc. ). Try the Free Demo version. Upgrade to more complex versions for the difference in cost. Upgrade to more complex versions for the difference in cost.
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Vectric VCarve Pro Is a great solution for cutting parts on a CNC Router. There are tools for 2D design, V Carve toolpaths and calculation of 2D and 2.5D toolpaths along with the ability to import and toolpath a single 3D model (STL, OBJ etc.). There is also support to import multiple Vectric Clip Art 3D models (V3M) to create 3D assemblies. Try the Free Demo version. Upgrade to more complex versions for the difference in cost.
Vectric Aspire is the flagship of the line. Aspire has tools which helps you transform 2D sketches, photos, drawing and digital artwork into detailed, 3D relief models, then calculate toolpaths to accurately cut those shapes. Aspire is built with a an intuitive user interface for ease of use for production design and routing. Aspire can Create 3D models that the others software can't. Try the Free Demo Version.
Mach3 is a six axis CNC controller software. Mach3 will convert your PC into a fully functional 6 axis CNC Controller. Mach3 is one of the most popular CNC Controllers for both DIY and Industrial machines. Import DXF, generate G-Code, fully customizable. Works with CNC Routers, milling machines, lathes, plasma cutters and lasers. You will need Mach3 or a program like it to make your CNC Router Table move. Try out the Free Demo version.

Bluehost: If you plan to sell your CNC Projects online, you will need a website. My websites are hosted on Bluehost. Why? Because it’s incredibly easy to use. 1-click automatic WordPress installation and excellent customer service via phone or chat. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND using Bluehost for your first site.

Click this link to get a special CNCRT discount.

WPProfitbuilder If you want to build a webpage that is fast, inexpensive, fabulous and that works then WPProfitbuilder is for you. Make Instant Marketing Pages in a Snap… Click, Drag, Profit – Yeah, it’s that simple… Build Any Type of web Marketing Page in a Few Clicks… One Simple Plugin Unlocks Unlimited Potential of Wordpress… You could easily create any kind of lead pages, sales pages, member portals, webinar pages, bonus give away pages, affiliate pages… like the gurus without all the headaches… with Zero coding. In fact I used WPProfitBuilder to make this site. => SEE IT IN ACTION

99 Designs: If you need to find a good graphics designer check out 99designs. At 99designs, dozens of talented designers compete to deliver the best design for your creative needs—from logos to vector art to full website concepts. Have the designers compete to give you the best results.  99 Designs

Autodesk Fusion 360. Fusion 360™ is the first 3D CAD/CAM tool of its kind, connecting your entire product development process in a single cloud-based tool. Fusion-360

MUST READ BOOKS & BLOGS

CNC Programming Handbook is an excellent book to teach you G-code. It talks about both mills and lathes and has a very thorough description of all G-codes / M-codes as well as sub programs. This book is  a deep dive into CNC programming. When you are done you will be able to trouble shoot any program. http://amzn.to/1G9lyjy
Machine Shop Trade Secrets is one of my favorite machining books. It is a series of short tips and tricks created by master machinist James Harvey after 30 years of work experience. James has a way of making complex tasks easier. I know that you can apply some things you will learn in this book to your CNC Router use. http://amzn.to/1MpD7Ng
cnc cookbook
The CNC Cookbook is the book to get If you decide that you want to build your own CNC machine or just get a better understanding of how one works. It contains a ton of information about CNC components, Hardware and software. It even includes a few wiring diagrams.  http://amzn.to/1KGQMi2
CNC Trade Secrets is James Harvey second book. There is a reason two of his books are on my list. The reason is he writes good books. CNC Trade Secrets is a smaller book which has sections on time saving tips, A tutorial on how to use Solidworks, A section on writing G-code, and a section on operating a Haas Machining center. http://amzn.to/1KGP7Jl
The $100 Startup is another favorite book of mine. In fact I like this book so much I give it as a graduation present along with $100. This is a book about taking your passion and $100 to start a business. It is loaded with success stories of people who have done just that. This book encourages you to go after your dream now, work smart and build your new future. Highly recommend!  http://amzn.to/1G9m6pL
4hr work wek
The 4-Hour Workweek is a book about designing your own life style business. This book explains in detail how to work fewer hours but get more done through the use of online resources and Virtual assistants. This is the book most people talk about when they decide to start a new business. It talks about legitimate ways to make money that I had never thought of or heard about. Mind blowing. Also available as an audiobook.  http://amzn.to/1BMvDxF
Working At Woodworking  is a very different kind of book. It combines solid business planning information with a lot of information on how to set up your shop. This  book is not dull. This is one Woodworking/business books that has lots of jigs and tool talk. The focus is a two car garage sized cabinet shop but the lessons learned here can be easily transfered to a CNC shop.  http://amzn.to/1Gn1sVb
The Woodworkers Guide to Pricing Your Work. One question I get asked most frequently is "How much should I charge"? You're thinking about selling your woodworking projects, but what should you charge for them? How can you set a price that's too good to pass up without selling your work short? In this book they will shows you how other woodworkers set their prices and sell their products, including crafts, carvings, folk art, turnings, clocks, furniture and cabinetry.  http://amzn.to/1EYlq16
Making Wood Signs Is one of the best books I have read on the subject. It takes you through ldesign, layout to woodworking and painting. It also has a very good section on mount the signage. The book covers manual routing and CNC (briefly). Money well spent.  http://amzn.to/1QcexVT
Will It FLY   Stop rushing into businesses born from half-baked ideas, misguided theories, and other forms of self-delusion. A lack of proper validation kills more businesses than anything else. As Joel Barker says, 'Speed is only useful if you re running in the right direction.' Will It Fly? will help you make sure you are clear for takeoff. Smart Passive Income host Pat Flynn's new book.  http://amzn.to/1SkT3qh

TOOLING

KentCNC Dust Shoe The "Split Shoe" is a two piece Dust Shoe. An upper acrylic piece clamps around the bottom portion of the router/spindle. A brush ring is attached to the upper acrylic piece by rare earth magnets. This removable brush ring configuration provides quick and easy access for bit changes and the clear acrylic allows the bit to be viewed during cutting. SPLIT SHOE
Laser Point V Bit  The CMT Laser point Bit is the V Bit that I use most often. It has a very sharp tip that is exactly centered on the bit. The center of the carved letters is crisp and requires very little sanding.   http://amzn.to/1eL2gXn
Variable - Speed Oscillating Multi-Tool  I use this tool to cut the tabs which hold the CNC part in the material during material. The thin blade gets in very close to the parts. I can also use the sander attachment to clean up the edges of the work piece. This is one of my most used tools. http://amzn.to/1HRfg96
Magnate Bottom Planing Bit This bit makes surfacing your spoil board simple. A flat surface is essential to making repeatable cuts. The carbide cutter on this bit shave the MDF spoil board flat. Use a dust collection system because it will get dusty. http://amzn.to/1LZbFZn
Rotozip Chuck Adapter Kit. Finding a way to hold a 1/8" bit in a full size router can be difficult. The CH01 Chuck Adapter fits into a 1/4" collet. It runs very true and doesn't cost a fortune. http://amzn.to/1HRgS2F
Gecko G540 I 've used the Gecko Driver G540 in 3 machines so far. The G540 is a 4 axis CNC driver with built in breakout board. The G540  plugs directly into your computer via the parallel port and to your motors through DB9 connectors. 10 microstep fixed resolution discrete motor controls 0 to 3.5A rated phase current 18VDC to 50VDC supply voltage. http://amzn.to/1eL8Mxb
Dust Deputy The Dust Deputy is a Cyclone separator for your shop Vacuum. It traps dust in a bucket and not in your shop vacuum. Separates 99% of sanding dust; only 1% goes into the vacuum. I used to have to change the filter on my Shop Vacuum all the  time. I haven't had to change the filter on my Vacuum in over 3 years. http://amzn.to/1HS93d2

XBox 360 Controller For Windows You can use an XBox 360 Wireless controller (For Windows) to control your CNC machine. The wireless controller communicates with the pc by using a small "Microsoft XBox360 Wireless Receiver For Windows" that plugs into the USB port on PC. http://amzn.to/1PJj2mg

 

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