I have been considering an X axis power feed for my mini mill to get cleaner cuts and to speed up the movement of the table. I would like to get a fairly fast jog speed to move the table from one end to the other as with several recent projects I have worn myself out moving the table from one end to another. The machine is an HF X2 clone with 3 axis DRO and belt drive that can get the spindle to about 4000 RPM. I also have a column brace that attaches the column to the base. I was planning to upgrade to a G0704 at the beginning of last month, but I came to realize that there are more than 25 parts I want to make that my machine is capable of but my lathe had more parts I couldn't do than parts I could do. I upgraded the lathe instead and won't have the budget to replace the X2 until next summer. Picture: My idea is: -Directly mount stepper motor to X axis lead screw (16 TPI) -Wire in switch to cut power to stepper to maintain manual control (as well as E stop) -Use arduino (not sure which, probably mega) with 4.3" touch screen to control -Touch screen can control speed, direction, with buttons for jogging with no load -Keypad to move table precisely once zero'd. Maybe add a stepper to the Z axis, simply because I find moving the Z axis and locking it precisely to be tedious. A stepper could do it precisely and quickly and could hold it without needing to lock the Z. I expect to be able to do the X alone for under $100 purchasing: -Arduino controller -Compatible driver -Touch screen -Stepper -Power supply -Stock for mount The reason I want to go with a stepper and arduino instead of simple DC motor and a voltage controller is because I think with a little extra cost, I can add precision control, more precise feed rates, and options for future upgrades (Full cnc, controllable spindle speed with touch screen, integrate DRO to touch screen). The programming the arduino isn't an issue for me. I have been a programmer for a few years now and I am pretty good with arduino code. My questions or calls for advise are: -What size stepper would I need to move 25 ipm while cutting aluminum with 3/8" end mill with a light cut? -What size stepper would I need to move simply jog the table 150 ipm under no load? -Is there an easier/cheaper/less complex way to accomplish the same thing? -Would it be easier to control the spindle speed using a small stepper on the pot rather than swapping out a board? -If I were to add a Z axis stepper, is there a way to install it that would negate the need to lock the Z axis when cutting?