Spindle: Dewalt DW660


Based on the discussions at the Shapeoko forum, the Dewalt DW660 seems the price-performance leader. It is way better than the “dremel type” and not far behind the more expensive units. The unit costs around US$60. I purchased from Amazon.


Heavier types such as palm routers have more power and run a bit less noisy, but weight much more. The way the Shapeoko is constructed, a lighter device (such as this) is a better choice.


It comes with a collet-nut grip for tool-free changing of bits. However, when installed in the Shapeoko, it is easier to use a tool (therefore requiring its removal -see MODs below)


Also comes with a depth adjustment clip-on adapter. Not useful for Shapeoko, but can perhaps be used to install a vacuum line/adapter.



The tool incorporates tool-free bit change “for fast and easy bit changing without a wrench”. However, while it is mounted in the Shapeoko, this feature gets on the way and it makes changing the bits actually more difficult. It is recommended that the “tool-free” gadget be removed (part #10 -“collet grip” and associated) [link].

Note: I have not tried this mod yet. Not sure whether I need to remove collet grip or not.


Image from here [link]

Instructions to remove the collet grip (part 10):

  • Remove the collet nut (19) and collet (18)
  • IMPORTANT: hold the tool pointing up to prevent the motor from falling out
  • Remove the 4 screws (part 14) that holds the shroud (part 9)
  • Remove shroud (part 9)
  • Remove retainer ring (part 11)
  • Remove collet grip and associated components (part 10)

Note: I have not tried this mod yet. Not sure whether I need to remove collet grip or not.


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