Shaper - handheld CNC router with camera assist. Good companion tool for the Glowforge?

Check this out:

Looks like a great companion tool for the Glowforge!


Oh my word!! Thats sooo cool!

Wow that looks awesome!

me likey, me wanty

Found no prices, but I would expect that to be a thousand dollar router.
Cloud based I think, and if you noticed how he clicked to produce copies of the pattern and dragged them around to position them - we are going to see something very similar with the 'forge.

The zoom function was very cool, and would greatly facilitate accurate eyeball positioning of the pattern on the material. Seems that would negate the need for precise material positioning or homing coordinates to produce exact copies.

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Neat project I will make on the 'Forge from the Shaper site: Trammel of Archimedes!


Way cool, but I’ve been on their “tell me when its available” list for over a year… :smirk:


Same. They’re definitely getting more polished, though.

Any idea how deep one of these can cut?

Like @dwardio said, it is vaporware for now but it does look like a great idea.

The closest thing that is available is the Handibot; I have one and love it.


I forgot about the Handibot. I considered backing it, but I was a little perturbed by Shopbot, an established business, using Kickstarter to launch their new product. Also, I thought they were asking too much (I could have been wrong about that).

The Shaper looks awesome though! I hadn’t heard about it until I saw that video, so I’m a new entrant to the “tell me when it’s available” list. :slight_smile:

Shoot, now I’m worried the Shaper will be closer to $2k than $1k.

It looks like it’s going to be 2.5D, at most. I guess Glowsmiths will need to decide if we’d prefer cutting acrylic templates for use with a normal handheld router or springing for the Shaper.

Cross reference to @Hirudin’s post from another topic, desktop CNC thread.


I would love to be able to use the Glowforge to mark a pattern on something that can’t be cut (steel or aluminum, using Cermark or similar) and then have the Shaper be able to follow the path to cut out a precise part (or spot-drill holes like Ben does in the video.)

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I wouldn’t call it vaporware… Ben doesn’t work for them as far as I know (unless he’s recently left GoogleX.) It’s a real thing that appears to be working well!

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Didn’t mean it so much as a pejorative as simply it is not yet available.

You might be overthinking this. A CNC mill and decent CAD/CAM software makes that sort of fabrication very easy and fast to do with no need for either a GF or Ceramark.


As the shaper gets closer to release I really think cameras are the future of cnc. The glowforge will use them extensively, the shaper will depend on them for its very existence, and now it is rumored that there may be camera support coming to the handibot with the new control card and software.
The handibot rumor has me the most excited as it is a great machine but it’s biggest downfall has been indexing beyond its 6x8" window.

I stumbled across these guys at Maker Faire this weekend. Unfortunately I was pushing around my 2 year old in a stroller to finally get the tyke to take a much needed nap, so I wasn’t able to put my hands on the Shaper myself. They were allowing people to cut out state map outlines.

Sadly it was still a matter of “sign up for our notification list” but seeing one out in the wild was a pleasant surprise, since I knew nothing about the device until this thread.

Sorry, no pictures (again… both hands busy at that point).


Apparently this is going on sale in less than three hours. Preorder price: $1500.

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This guy is on pre-order now. Save $100 for you and me with a referral bonus

I had woke up at 4:55am to get in on the absolute best price of the pre-order. But even being there the very minute it opened… I failed to enter my proper zipcode and missed the steepest discount.

Then on the not as amazing but still nice price, it was saying there was some issue with my card. No idea what, possibly it saw that my card was still in queue for the better price? meh.

In the end, I decided to just wait for it to be available on retail. I don’t really need another community and wait for delivery in my life right now.

But hey… pre-order is now open. So those of you with an interest, have at it. My main use case was going to be adding a bezel to things cut on the laser. Likely I would eventually reverse that order of operations and start with CNC for cutting the outline, finish on the laser for engraving details.

EDIT: Adding my link now that I have used Hirudin’s.