Steppers VS Servos for desktop CNC machines such as Sherline and Taig

Servo kits, components, and systems are available from IMService at

See the DeskCNC software, CNC controller and related products at

We also have special bundled pricing for Sherline machines purchased with our servo systems and kits.

Servos are better because:

1) Dynamic response, accelerate faster when starting and stopping, and changing direction.

2) Easy to setup, plug and play, Set P-D pots at 11:00 and 1:00, and you are done.

3) Always cool to the touch, no thermal effects.

4) More Power, Servo motor torque curve is linear.  Full power is available at both low and high rpm.

5) No lost steps, if the motor is asked to position where it cannot ( like through a vise), it will fault and stop.

6) Faster feed and rapid speeds, 45 ipm on a Sherline or Taig.

7) Fault condition stops all axes.

8) Closed loop system always knows where it is located, and following error is less than the accuracy of the machine.

9) Higher resolution than steppers, 112,500 steps per inch

10) Motors, controller, and drives are Made in USA


Steppers-not because:

1) Much slower acceleration without losing steps

2) Heat buildup affects machine accuracy and axis linearity

3) Resonance causes lost steps at certain speeds and cutting loads.

4) Requires slower speeds to avoid losing steps.

5) Much higher voltages required to approach servo speeds, and then thermal losses increase geometrically.

6) Noisy - stepper drivers and motors make an audible hissing and stepping noise.

7) Machine slide and lead screw maintenance is critical as the least bit of sticking, binding, or bumping can cause loss of position.