Lubrication-free linear guides in CNC machine for milling styrofoam

As the styrofoam adheres to all surfaces, self-cleaning drylin bearings are used.

This CNC machine mainly mills styrofoam. This produces a large number of small particles that become trapped in all parts of the machine due to their electrostatic charge. Since the manufacturer has been using a lubrication-free and self-cleaning drylin linear guidance system from igus on the X, Y and Z axes, maintenance work is a thing of the past. The milling machine also achieved speeds of up to 50,000mm/min on the X and Y axes thanks to the system's excellent sliding properties.


  • What was needed: drylin w linear guides
  • Requirements: Styrofoam particles settle on all surfaces and gaps of the machine during milling, resulting in high maintenance costs for the parts
  • Industry: Mechanical engineering, CNC milling machine
  • Success for the customer: igus linear guides are completely lubrication-free and maintenance-free and self-cleaning, while at the same time enabling high performance at travelling speeds and significantly reducing the milling time
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Milling machine with drylin linear bearings


Mat in Mat is a Spanish company dedicated to technological solutions for milling, machining, digital modelling, digital scanning and 3D printing of large-format sculptures.
Various materials can be used for the realisation of such figures; in the case of this CNC machine, mainly styrofoam is milled. However, the special material also posed a particular challenge. When styrofoam is milled, a large amount of small particles are produced which, due to their electrostatic charge, adhere to all surfaces and gaps in the machine (even a vacuum system can only minimise the problem, but not completely eliminate it). As conventional linear guides and bearings become clogged over time and require a great deal of maintenance, the search was on for a suitable solution.


Today, the manufacturer relies on a drylin W linear guidance system from igus on all three axes, making maintenance work a thing of the past from now on. Unlike many other linear guides or ball bearings, these linear guides are completely lubrication-free and self-cleaning so that the styrofoam particles cannot mix with a lubricant and thus restrict functionality. But the machine manufacturer also benefits from the new solution in terms of performance. With the new linear guides, the milling machine achieves speeds of up to 50,000mm/min thanks to the excellent sliding properties on the X and Y axes. This also significantly reduces the milling time.
drylin W profile rail guides

Milling machine with drylin linear bearings
Milling machine with drylin linear bearings