Driver Boards

Design of electronics systems, and wiring.
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David Kirtley
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Re: Driver Boards

Postby David Kirtley » Sat Apr 02, 2011 3:47 am

One newer board on the scene is a grblShield. It was featured on make.com in an article. I actually bought one but have not had the chance to play with it yet.

It is a basic shield for Arduino that has 3 stepper controllers on it. There is a video on http://dank.bengler.no/

Runs a subset of G-code.
If you are really bored, my CNC design page is:

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Awesomeness
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Re: Driver Boards

Postby Awesomeness » Sun Apr 03, 2011 4:33 pm

What parts of a common CNC system does this take the place of?

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David Kirtley
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Re: Driver Boards

Postby David Kirtley » Mon Apr 04, 2011 2:24 am

The g-code interpreter is run on the arduino and the shield has the stepper controllers all built in. So, the complete system is the arduino, shield, 3 stepper motors and power supply. You just send the gcode over the serial connection through USB.
If you are really bored, my CNC design page is:

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Awesomeness
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Re: Driver Boards

Postby Awesomeness » Mon Apr 04, 2011 5:18 pm

Interesting. How much code can the Arduino handle? I routinely have g-code for small 12"x12" parts that is several hundred thousand lines, and a few megabytes.

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beermkr
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Re: Driver Boards

Postby beermkr » Mon Apr 04, 2011 6:28 pm

Only 8x microstepping. Fine for a screw drive machine but would be an issue for a belt drive machine. At 16x my x axis is like 1042 steps per inch.

R/
Mike Pensinger
Chief Brewer, The River Company Brewery, Radford, VA

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Awesomeness
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Re: Driver Boards

Postby Awesomeness » Wed Apr 06, 2011 5:00 pm

Yeah, that would be a problem.

I'm wondering how an Arduino would deal with a 10MB, 500,000 line g-code program.

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David Kirtley
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Re: Driver Boards

Postby David Kirtley » Sun Apr 10, 2011 12:04 am

If you are really bored, my CNC design page is:

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Keith
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Location: North Wales, UK

Re: Driver Boards

Postby Keith » Sat Apr 30, 2011 5:49 am

Many of the suggestions made so far are ALL very good and well thought out however I would like to throw my 2 cents into this discussion before anything is settled; I agree that the idea suggested by Mike; (beemkr), of

“Good, Better, Best options for components should be adhered to. Each component should have multiple options letting the end user decide where they would rather spend their money.”

is a great idea, Steve; (shubing), suggested

“that we have a standard set of electronics (and maybe other parts too) for the project. In that way we keep the variables to a minimum when the machine is built. This not only becomes important when finding and getting the parts but more importantly makes trouble shooting issues much easier. It also makes it easier to provide advice and help for learning how to use the CNC machine.”

I recommend that our BASIC/GOOD machine be designed and constructed around 1 single set of electronics, which realistically should be available globally. The reason for this is that if the basic/start-up machine is designed around 1 set of electronics/motors then:

1. Then any member of this forum will be able to offer help/support if we all build one.

2. Anyone wishing to start into the madness which is ownership of a CNC machine will NOT have to choose between this setup or that setup to KNOW 100% for certain that “if I build it correctly it will work”.

3. Anyone anywhere in the world will know that they WILL be able to get the parts for the BASIC/GOOD machine, those of you who live in the USA may not be aware of how difficult it is to purchase parts which are readily available in the USA. This may mean that the forum makes ALL the full electronics/motors package available to its members so that EVERYONE has access to the same startup kit .

When I built my first CNC Machine, 4X8 BlackToe from Patrick, I ordered the COMPLETE kit from him so that I KNEW that “if I build it correctly it will work” because Patrick had spent years developing it around a specific package of components.

Now to do this then the forum is going to have to agree to support this idea from the very first BASIC/GOOD machine that is built. Living in the UK as I do I am not sure how I can help in this however I am willing to help in anyway that I can, I have already offered to cut machines for new members under the “paying it forward, helping new members to get going” scheme I suggested, should we decide to go down that route. Once we have a BASIC/GOOD machine designed then I agree that we should look at the BETTER and BEST options.

I personally know of a number of potential new CNC’ers who are currently being put off by the idea of messing around with the electronics/motors side of building their own machine and I think that what I have suggested will encourage many more people to build their own machines. They will know that “if I build it correctly it will work”.

If we design a BASIC/GOOD machine with a common set of components which we ensure can be had globaly then EVERYONE who decides to build one of our BASIC/GOOD machines will know “if I build it correctly it will work”. Yes this will mean that the forum will have to collectively work to ensure that new members have access to everything that they need to get started but then aren't we trying to design/develope a machine which will allow this?

Just my 2 cents folks. :)

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beermkr
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Re: Driver Boards

Postby beermkr » Sat Apr 30, 2011 5:56 pm

From a cost/simplicity standpoint I think the HobbyCNC driver board can not be beat. It's only drawback is the kit form but it is pretty simple to build and at $79 the price can not be beat.

I am looking at a full bipolar separate driver/BOB setup on Ebay that is $158 and may pull the trigger on it soon.

R/
Mike Pensinger
Chief Brewer, The River Company Brewery, Radford, VA


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