Cupcake Body Assembly

This page is part of the Cupcake CNC build sequence.


In this step, we'll be building the outer frame of the Cupcake CNC. It should take about 2 hours.

Parts list

These are the parts that you'll need to assemble the Cupcake CNC body. Find and set aside:

  • Lasercut parts (each will have its name etched on the part)
    • Front panel
    • Back panel
    • Left panel
    • Right panel
    • Top panel
    • Bottom panel
    • Power panel
    • Middle panel
    • 4 bearing brackets (labeled 'bb'; not shown)
  • ATX power supply
  • 67 16mm M3 bolts
  • 67 16mm M3 nuts
  • 4 small phillips-head screws (for the power supply)
  • 15 small plastic spacers (not shown)
  • Motherboard (not shown)
  • 3 stepper drivers (not shown)
  • Extruder controller (not shown, Ultimate only)

The lasercut parts are in the Cupcake CNC Lasercut Parts box.
The M3 bolts & nuts are in the Hardware Burrito bag.
The ATX power supply is by itself.
The motherboard, stepper drivers & extruder board are in the Generation 3 electronics bag.

The panels ordinarily have text etched one side. This is the "face" of the panel. Horizontal panels are oriented facing up, and side panels are oriented so they face away from the center of the bot.

Before you begin

If you'd like to sand, paint, stain, or decorate your bot, now's the time. Make sure the pieces are completely dry before you begin assembly. If the additional paint makes it hard for the tabs to fit in the slots, lightly sand the tabs with the included square of sandpaper.


Mount the bearing brackets on the middle panel

  • Take the middle panel and turn it face-up. Place a bearing bracket below the one of the corner holes.
  • Insert a bolt through one of the mounting holes and fasten it with a nut. Make sure the head of the bolt is facing the top of the panel.
  • Put bolts and nuts through the remaining three mounting holes, and tighten.
  • Add bearing brackets to the other three corners of the middle panel.

Mount the boards on the right panel

Set aside the right panel, the spacers, your motherboard and the three stepper motor drivers. If you're building an Ultimate, you might also want to grab your extruder controller board and a drill.
Check out this page for a bit more info.

  • Use four bolts and spacers to bolt the X stepper driver to the outside of the right panel (the side with the etching). Orient the board so that the two RJ45 jacks face what will be the back of the machine.
  • Mount the other two stepper drivers.
  • Bolt the motherboard to the outside of the right panel using three bolts and spacers. There's only one way to bolt this board on…UNLESS you're building an Ultimate! In that case you might want to flip it upside down and drill another hole on the upper left.
  • The electronics are now mounted! We'll hook them up later.

Assemble the body

  • While assembling the body, don't make the bolts more than finger-tight. You'll go back and tighten them down when you're done with primary assembly.
  • Take the front and middle panels. Slot the middle panel into the backside of the front, so that the etched text faces towards the top of the bot.
  • Fasten the parts together with two bolts and nuts.
  • Slot the front panel in to the bottom panel.
  • Fasten the bottom to the front with two bolts and nuts.
  • Slot the back panel into the middle panel and bolt it on. Note the "up" marking on the back panel, which will help you to orient it. The text on the back panel should face the back of the bot.
  • Slot the top panel onto the front and back panels and bolt. Notice that the fifth hole and two slots are facing the front of the machine.
  • Attach the left panel. There are many tabs which slot into this panel, so be patient. Once the tabs are all in their slots, bolt it together.
  • Attach the right panel, with the electronics.
  • You can now go back and tighten all the bolts with a hex key. This will keep the bot from rattling and make sure all the parts are squared up.

Add the power panel

  • The last step is to add the power supply and power plate.
  • Use the four phillips-head screws to attach the power plate to the power supply. Do not use M3 bolts! They won't fit properly, and too-long bolts could potentially enter the power supply body and damage the PSU.
    • Note: if you're not using one of the power supplies shipped with the deluxe kit, it may not precisely match the power panel. Cut or modify the panel as you see fit.
  • The power supply and power panel can now slot neatly into the niche in the rear of the bot. Use four nuts and bolts to secure it in place.
That's it! You've completed the body of your Cupcake CNC.

Next step: Cupcake Z Stage Assembly

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