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Technology @ Marston Science Library: CNC Machine

Guide to technologies and tutorials available through Marston Science Library, including augmented reality, 3D printing, Arduino, and 3D cameras.

CNC Machine

What is a CNC?

A Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machine is a computer-controlled cutting machine used for cutting intricate designs in various hard materials, such as wood, composites, plastics, metals, and foam. 

The CNC carves materials into preset designs.  The CNC machine located in the Marston Library Makery is a Tormach xsTECH.  This CNC machine is basically an enclosed router connected to a computer.

Instructional Resources

Watch the CNC Operate

What can you make with a CNC?

Watch this video to see just what the Tormach xsTECH can do:

Basic Instructions

Basic Instructions for creating a file for the CNC:

1. Create a file in TinkerCad or other 3D program

2. Save file as a .stl

3. Create an AutoDesk Fusion 360 account (educational version - free) to convert the .stl file into a .nc. If you have never used AutoDesk Fusion 360 you may want to watch some training videos.

4. Upload the .nc file on to the Tormach xsTech


For instructions on how to setup the machine, including unboxing:

For instructions on how to use the Tormack xsTech:


For Educational Use Only

This desktop CNC machine is specifically designed for educational use, encouraging hands-on learning of manufacturing skills. Designs and patterns are created and configured via the  software Autodesk Fusion 360.  This software is located on the computer in the Marston Library Makery.  You can also download this free software onto your personal computer by going to:

Fusion 360 is available for free personal use for individuals who are doing home-based, non-commercial design, manufacturing, and fabrication projects. Individuals must be learning for personal use, outside of a company environment, commercial training, outside of their primary employment.  

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