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An open source 4 by 8 foot CNC cutting machine for under $500. A router designed to let you cut big, useful things out of wood and more
An open source 4 by 8 foot CNC cutting machine for under $500. A router designed to let you cut big, useful things out of wood and more
1,279 backers pledged $314,547 to help bring this project to life.
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Maslow CNC - a $500 open source 4 by 8 foot CNC Machine



What is a prototype?

A prototype is a preliminary model of something. Projects that offer physical products need to show backers documentation of a working prototype. This gallery features photos, videos, and other visual documentation that will give backers a sense of what’s been accomplished so far and what’s left to do. Though the development process can vary for each project, these are the stages we typically see:

Proof of Concept

Explorations that test ideas and functionality.

Functional Prototype

Demonstrates the functionality of the final product, but looks different.

Appearance Prototype

Looks like the final product, but is not functional.

Design Prototype

Appearance and function match the final product, but is made with different manufacturing methods.

Production Prototype

Appearance, function, and manufacturing methods match the final product.

Project supporting material callout image

Prototype Gallery

These photos and videos provide a detailed look at this project’s development.

                                ******* UPDATE *******

Hi Everyone! We want to say a HUGE thank you to everyone who has supported us and our project, and another HUGE thank you to those of you who are just now arriving and want to support our project.

As of now we are sold out! It’s exciting and sad at the same time! We’re not taking any more orders right now, but we are making sure you can still get involved.

Anyone who backs us for any amount (even $1) will have a place saved in line for our next batch. By pledging for any amount, you get a backer number which will hold your place in line. You will also get all of our updates to stay informed, and we’d love to have you be a part of our community. We’re not planning on changing the price or anything crafty like that, we just want to make sure we have the resources to get everything done, get it done right, and get it done on time.

What is Maslow?

Maslow is a large 4 by 8 foot CNC cutting machine designed to let you cut big, useful things out of wood and other flat materials. Cut out a tiny house, a kayak, a tree house, some furniture, or anything else you can imagine. Maslow is designed to be affordable to buy, cheap to ship, easy to use, and powerful. Because designs can be shared digitally, you can build on the work of others or create your own from scratch.

You are going to build amazing things.


  • Work Space: 4' X 8' * 
  • Encoder Resolution: 8148 steps/rev 
  • Real World Precision: +- 1/64th inch (.4 mm) or better 
  • Max feed rate 48 inches/minute 
  • AC Voltage: 110-250 volts 
  • DC Voltage: 12 volts 
  • Connection: USB 
  • OS for Software: Mac, Windows, Linux 
  • Size: H: 6' 8" W: 10' D: 1' 7"  

*The work space is defined by the length of the two #25 roller chains so it can be easily enlarged or made smaller by adding or removing links from the chains.

Backer Rewards: 

  •  $1+ Pay What You Want
  • $25 Support a School
  • $350 Maslow CNC Machine Kit (Batch #2)
  • $550 Maslow CNC Machine Beta Tester Kit

What will YOU build?

Here are some CNC-produced projects to help get you thinking: a kayak, a house, home improvement, furniture, a green house, or art. We can't wait to see what you come up with! You can find more project inspiration on our website.

Who's talking about us?

Maslow CNC Press Kit Get it here!

Can't believe it works?

Maslow is something new in the world of CNC cutting machines, but it's based on a design which has been around for years: the hanging plotter

There are some amazing 4'x8' CNC machines out there, but they are all too expensive and too large. The design DNA of most CNC routers comes from the upright mill found in a machine shop, but their jobs are entirely different. An upright mill is designed to carve a relatively small cube of metal in 3D with extreme precision. A CNC router is mostly used to cut sheet materials. We decided it was time for a completely new design. Check out the video to see a walk-through of the design.

How easy is it to use?

CNC can be intimidating so we've designed Maslow to be easy to use. We know there are a lot of you out there who have a tiny house / wooden boat / home improvement project in mind but the idea of using a CNC machine to make it real seems like a big step.  

Maslow is meant to be a machine for everyone. Like any new tool, there are a couple things you will need to learn, but we'll be there for you in the community forums we've set up. You are going to build amazing things.  

Check out the videos for a quick overview of what it's like to cut something out.

This is a KIT!

One thing we want to be 100% clear about is that this CNC machine comes in "kit" form - you have to assemble it. We will provide detailed, step-by-step video assembly instructions. Here's a sample instructional video from our last CNC project.

What is not included in the box?  

You will need to buy two standard clay bricks, two sheets of plywood and three 10 foot 2x4s. Shipping a machine the size of Maslow would be tremendously expensive, so we had to think outside the box ;-). You will also need a standard wood router if you don't have one. We recommend the Ridgid R2200.

Beta Disclaimer:

Maslow is an open source project which means it’s built by and for the community. The purpose of the beta tester backer group is to get hardware into the hands of the community as quickly as possible. That means as a beta tester you will get access to the machine before the software is fully polished. You will likely find bugs and hopefully you will let us know when you do so we can fix them. At whatever level you pledge, please keep in mind that this is something entirely new. No one has ever created a 4’x8’ CNC router at even close to this price, so we will be learning with you. 

Transparency is our highest priority with this Kickstarter project. 

Delivery Timeline: 

 Support a School!

Are you involved with or do you know of an educational institutional who would love to have a Maslow CNC? For every 20 machines sold, we are donating 1 to an educational institution of your choice! This includes but is not limited to high schools, universities, boy scout troops, maker spaces, etc, both national and international. You can help support a school by backing at the $25 level, which will help us to pay the cost of shipping to the selected schools. Please visit this link if you have a school in mind that would love to use Maslow, or share the contest with others who may want to nominate. 

Meet the team:

  • Bar Smith - Founder, Engineer 
  • Hannah Teagle - Co-founder, Communications & Outreach 
  • Tom Beckett - Co-founder, Crowdfunding Strategy 

In 2014 we successfully funded and delivered a Kickstarter project for the Makesmith CNC, The Most Affordable Desktop CNC Router. Learn more about us and our last successful project here

Need some time to decide? 

Back us for a "buck" so that you receive project updates that announce new developments!


  • Galen Forrest, Videographer
  • Dillon Carson, Graphic Designer

Risks and challenges

This project is an evolution of the Makesmith CNC Kickstarter project we successfully funded and delivered in 2014. We know what it takes to tackle an ultra low-cost CNC project. Like last time, we intend to get it done on time and on budget.

Risks and challenges include the typical issues that arise from managing a supply chain. We’ve done two things that should make this project go smoothly. First, we’ve used standard components wherever possible, such as using a Mega R3 as the brain instead of a custom board. By using standard components, we are getting parts which have been built, tested, and improved over the course of many years. Second, every piece of Maslow has already been prototyped by not one, but two suppliers. That means that no single supplier is critical to our supply chain.

Most obstacles can only be addressed once they’ve been encountered. One that we have identified is the possibility of things moving a bit slower than we would like during the upcoming holiday season. Our campaign will end just before Thanksgiving, and our purchasing activities will take place in the weeks following. With the upcoming December holidays, things may slow down a bit externally. For that reason, we’ve conservatively budgeted significant buffers into our delivery schedule.

As many returning successful project creators like to say, this is not our first rodeo. At the end of the day, we have a complete machine cutting out parts in our garage as we speak, and we’re excited to get you set up in the same capacity! We have an unstoppable will to get this machine into your hands so we can see what kind of amazing things you will build.

Thanks for checking out our project!

Bar, Hannah, & Tom

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Funding period

- (28 days)

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