If you are interested in getting a woodworker then you may be considering the Onefinity CNC Woodworker. Since it launched in 2020, the Onefinity CNC has quickly become a very popular choice amongst hobbyist woodworking enthusiasts.
It is renowned for it’s sleek yet innovative design. There are two different variations of the Onefinity CNC- the X-35 and the X-50 – but the only difference between them is diameter of the cylindrical shaft on the X-axis.
Does the Onefinity CNC stand up to the hype? Is it the right woodworker for you? We have reviewed the product in detail to help you decide whether to invest in this product. Keep reading to find out whether the Onefinity CNC could be your next woodworker.
Size and Capability
The first thing you need to consider is the size of this product. You will need a table that measures at least 46 by 46 inches to make sure you have enough room for the controller. The cutting area is 32 and a quarter inches by 32 and a quarter inches by 5 and quarter inches.
With the Onefinity CNC you can work with pieces no more than 5 inches in thickness.
Due to the open sides of the workbed you can slide a 2 and a half foot wide workpiece through it regardless of the length. This is a really useful feature, but make sure you support the portion that protrudes from the machine.
A lot of woodcutters marketed at hobbyists have a hollow steel shaft frame, but the Onefinity CNC has a superior all metal aluminium construction which is sturdy and rigid.
The Y-axis has 35 millimetre steel tubes and the X-axis has 35 millimetre or 50 millimetre steel tubes depending on whether you choose the X-35 or the X-50. If you intend to use heavier, more powerful spindles then the X-50 will suit you better.
The axes are all driven by a ball screw mechanism- either 12 millimetre or 16 millimetre ball screws depending on which variation you get.
You will need to lubricate this mechanism regularly to ensure it runs smoothly, but in return you will get a level of accuracy and speed that you don’t tend to get from belt drives.
The onefinity CNC uses two motors to move the Y-axis which also contributes to the smooth and accurate motion.
The main downside to the Onefinity CNC is that there is no workbed included. You will need to make your own or get someone else to make it for you, so you will need to factor this in when considering the cost of the product.
Some of the competitor products have a workbed included so this is a bit of shame, but Onefinity have put together some very useful guides on how to make your own workbed.
The plus side is that you have the freedom to choose your own workbed rather than being stuck with whichever one comes with the machine.
There is also no spindle or router with this product so you can choose a spindle that suits your individual needs, or use a router instead. The controller is able to connect a VFD so you have the option to use a VFD spindle and control it’s speed.
You also have the option to buy this woodcutter without electronics or a controller set up, which allows you to choose your own if you would prefer.
Whilst this product is marketed as a woodcutter, it can actually cut a range of different materials like aluminium, brass, and plastics. You can use this machine for metal milling with some impressive results given that metal milling is not the machine’s primary purpose.
However, if metal milling is your priority then there are other products better suited to that task. Another great use for this machine is 3D carvings. This woodcutter is capable of producing intricate 3D carvings if you use good 3D design software alongside it.
The high performance motors on the Onefinity CNC are able to perform minute movements whilst maintaining great control. The Buildbotics machine controller uses a Raspberry Pi board which means you don’t need to get a separate computer in order to control the machine.
If you want to connect your own computer to the machine, you can do this easily with an ethernet cable. You can also access the controller wirelessly from your computer by connecting the controller to your Wifi network.
If you have more than one Onefinity CNC you can control them from one device if all the controllers are connected to the same Wifi network.
Rather than using homing sensors, the controller recognizes the home position by detecting the variation in the motor current when it hits the end of the axis. The controller comes with preinstalled software for controlling the woodworker.
This software can be accessed on a web browser from any device that is connected to the same network as the controller, or any device that is connected to the controller via an ethernet cable.
The software is minimalistic and simple to use, but you can use your own software if you prefer.
The touch screen display does not come as standard but it is a great additional feature which gives you another way to control the machine. You can also use a gamepad joystick to control the machine manually.
If you want to keep an eye on the cutting process you can connect a USB camera to the controller.
With four USB ports, a HDMI port, a DB25 port, an ethernet port, VFD, and multiple input-output ports, there are lots of options for connecting to the controller.
Optional Extras and Assembly
One of the unique selling points of the Onefinity CNC is that it supports the 7W laser from J Tech Photonics.
This means you can use a laser module without voiding the warranty of your woodcutter, which you are not able to do with competitor products. This allows you to carry out accurate engraving on a range of different materials.
There are some optional accessories that you can purchase to go with your Onefinity CNC. One of the most useful ones is the Suckit Dust Boot. It gathers the dust with 1 inch long brushes.
You can connect the dust boot to a shop vac or a dust collector to keep your workspace clean. The dust boot is transparent so you can still see the cutting process clearly and it is made from durable polycarbonate. The brushes are magnetically attached which makes them easy to remove.
Assembling the Onefinity Woodworker is very straightforward. The parts come pre-assembled and putting them together is very easy when you follow the instructions in the manual provided.
There are also instructional videos online that Onefinity have created to make assembly even easier for their customers. It should take you less than an hour to assemble and calibrate the woodcutter, and set up the necessary software.
The electronic components are ready to go as soon as they are plugged in and require no assembly which saves extra time. This means you can jump straight into your woodcutting projects.
In order to make the product smaller and easier to ship, there is no wasteboard included with this woodcutter.
Safety features are very important with woodcutters as the machines can be dangerous if used incorrectly or if something goes wrong.
In the event of an emergency you can use the red E-stop button to stop the machine, which is an excellent safety feature. This gives you additional peace of mind while you use the Onefinity CNC.
Pros & Cons
Now that we have covered the specifications and features of the product, here is a round of the main pros and cons for you to consider.
- Open sides allow you to work with long pieces
- Customizable – you can choose your own electronics and controller set up if desired
- The high performance motors provide accuracy and control
- The Raspberry Pi board removes the need to control the machine with a separate device
- You can use a laser module without voiding your warranty
- Does not come with a workbed included unlike some competitor products
- There is no wasteboard included
- Ball screw mechanism requires regular lubrication
Our overall view of this machine is that it is well-built with a rigid construction. It has the ability to handle a range of different materials which makes it very versatile.
If you are a hobbyist woodworker or you run a small business with a smaller budget for a woodcutter then this product is ideal. It does a great job whilst being reasonably priced.
This product is more affordable than the competitor products without sacrificing quality of build or the efficiency of the machine.
Whilst you have to spend a bit of extra money to source your own workbed, you don’t need to purchase a separate computer to control the router. You also don’t need to buy additional software, as the pre-installed software is competent and easy to use.
Setting up this machine is quick and simple which allows you to get started right away. If you purchase this well-performing machine, you will not be disappointed.