These are some design patterns I find popping up throughout my work building cheap, easy to manufacture machines. Over the term, as we discover more, we can add to this as a kind of cookbook.

Preloaded Linear Ways

I spoke about backlash earlier, so I want to show how I eliminate it in the Clank axis:


  • only as stiff (in preload direction) as the flexural spring
  • not adjustable, could be

Drawing Involutes

Drawing GT2

From the aaxis log



Cheap Tension

  • integrates motor mount with belt tension
  • note causes belt alignment to change slightly
  • from prusa


Rotary Clamshell

section clam

Rotary Reduction


Reduced Belt And Pinion

  • i.e. z-axis drive on clank-cz

Linear Rack and Pinion

Jens on Machining Rack and Pinion

CNC Friendly Gears

Jens on Machining Cycloidal Gears

Core XY

  • flying mass minimization
  • keep in mind long belts == long springs
  • design nuance in overlapping belts, not too hard to overcome
  • tension! tension!

Ilan Moyer’s CoreXY Site