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BLACKBOX Motion Control System [closed]

Discussion in 'Controller Boards' started by Mark Carew, May 19, 2018.

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  1. jukeman60

    jukeman60 Well-Known
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    Hi Mark
    any new info on the blackbox? maybe some lovely pic?
    I do have one question will the blackbox fit in the new
    opencase in the parts store? should we order it for
    the controller board or will the blackbox come in it's own case?
    can you share what size the blackbox is?
    thanks Matt
     
  2. Mark Carew

    Mark Carew OpenBuilds Team
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    Wish we could share pics but it would really show too much at this time.
    I can say it will have its own case and so will not need the OpenCase
    The current size of the BlackBox is: ~ L6 W3 H1.5" - L150 W80 H36mm
    Update to follow this post
     
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  3. Mark Carew

    Mark Carew OpenBuilds Team
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    Hey guys! The BlackBox Controller development is going full force and we are excited to share with you a few milestones we have experienced through the process.

    As you may know by now OpenBuilds is in pursuit of the ultimate all in one CNC control solution! This is where it all started.

    BlackBox was “APEX” in the beginning. The Apex had a lot of cool features but in many ways, we felt it was overkill and that we would all be paying a lot more for features that we may never even use.


    APEX Render_2.45.png
    20170620_162135.jpg ^4A9885B8F43BB31E3D8659C6A9AE247FF921B78A8C50D2159C^pimgpsh_fullsize_distr.jpg

    Version 1

    The decision was made - IT WAS TIME TO SIMPLIFY

    We went back to the drawing board and with all of our new founded knowledge we began to design what is now known as The BlackBox. In essence, the Black Box is a robust, straight to the point CNC controller. We refocused our efforts into bringing this design to life. True to OpenBuilds style, she’ll be exactly what we all need and will be affordable.

    With this mission in mind BlackBox prototype #1 was underway!


    Version 2

    Version 1 of the BLACKBOX was great but our inner nerds just couldn’t leave things alone Once again, we packed the board full of the coolest stuff in Version 2. The case got a major update in terms of function and design and while we were under the hood we beefed up the stepper driver current handling by switching from the DRV8825s to new 4A drivers. The BlackBox has an amazing look and feel to it and a whole slew of new exciting ideas came rushing in! BLACKBOX version 3 was born.


    Version 3

    Getting close! Much more progress was made on the case and mounting system. On the circuit side, we wanted to try something new and switched to Trinamics drivers. The prototype was ordered to test just Trinamics. Then we were able to get some integrated prototypes. After the 3rd round of prototypes, this version is clearly not going to work due to both harder assembly requirements and firmware instabilities. Also, these Trinamics are really turning out to be too costly. We learned a lot and found that we already had an amazing driver from V2. Nothing ventured nothing gained.

    One of the great discoveries that came out of this version is the concept of a muscle (drivers) and brains (CPU) board stack. The casing was also reworked again for easy assembly and has adopted and an extremely sleek, low profile look. This new style is perfect for the OpenBuilds modular system.


    Version 4

    Quick update – working on BlackBox 4X Version 2.0008.877.234.111 or something like that. Lots of testing and variations. Trinamics are out as mentioned previously and as luck would have it, Smoothieware V1 became redundant. More changes!

    Through all the testing and development, we’ve gained new understanding and got a ‘real feel’ for the workings of a board like this. The new drivers have performed flawlessly and give us the warm fuzzies. They turned out to be great and are very reliable and robust. They can handle higher amps and outperform drivers in it’s class. We happily added them back on this version of the BlackBox and we cherry picked many of the cool features from back in the APEX design.

    The latest prototypes are on the bench at CopperPour HQ being put through their paces and so far, all is going extremely well! We are excited to be at a place where we can see all of the hard work put into making the OpenBuilds BlackBox the ultimate all in one CNC control solution coming to life!

    Stay tuned…
     
  4. joe williams

    joe williams Well-Known
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    We're all looking forward to this...thanks for the updates!
     
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  5. NthAxisWorkshop

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    Awesome! Let's give these folks a hand!
     
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  6. Mark Carew

    Mark Carew OpenBuilds Team
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    Thanks guys, its been a long road and we have all learned so much.
    It's been an amazing Team effort and I would like to specially thank OpenBuilds Team Member @Peter Van Der Walt. We have been working together day and night on this project to make sure that OpenBuilds releases the best possible all in one CNC control solution to the world. :thumbsup:
     
  7. cncshane

    cncshane New
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    Thanks for the update and hard work
     
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  8. jukeman60

    jukeman60 Well-Known
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    That's what I like to here lets keep the excitement going
    I know we will have the best controller that we can get period.
    it will be worth the wait.
    mb
     
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  9. wingtime

    wingtime New
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    Thanks for the update.
     
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  10. Roberbike

    Roberbike New
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    With the smoothieware 2 in advanced state, is it not very conservative to use the smoothie 1?.
     
  11. aluminumwelder

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    3 pages of replies was too much to read, what is the price and approximate release date?
     
  12. Mark Carew

    Mark Carew OpenBuilds Team
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    Hey guys, just a quick update to let you know that the OpenBuilds BlackBox is still underway. No pricing or extra info yet as we are still in the prototype beta stage and things may change.
    We hope to have more information very soon and thank you again for your support as we work on rolling out the BlackBox
     
    Peter Van Der Walt likes this.
  13. iamme

    iamme New
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    Pretty quiet. Any news or updates.
     
  14. Rob Mitchell

    Rob Mitchell Well-Known
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    Hi Mark,

    I purchased the LEAD CNC kit a couple weeks back. I am now searching for a control board solution. Would you recommend I hold off purchasing something else in favour of your BlackBox? If so what do you believe is a "crystal ball" outlook on timeframe to be able to purchase it?
     
  15. Mark Carew

    Mark Carew OpenBuilds Team
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    Hey guys,
    So we have exciting news to share with you! The BlackBox production has begun.
    For a time frame estimate we are looking at about a 4-6 weeks to see these out in the wild and in your hands.
    In the meantime, if you're looking for a controller right away the good folks over at Spark Concepts have just released the all new awesome V4 xPro which is a great controller option! Be sure to check it out. It will be available on the OpenBuilds Part Store this week.

    On the BlackBox front here are a couple pics to wet the whistle!:thumbsup:

    BlackBox.png
    Prototype


    MiniMill_BlackBox.jpg
    MiniMill Mount and Testing
    BlackBox_Spin.gif
    BlackBox 360°
     
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  16. Rob Mitchell

    Rob Mitchell Well-Known
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  17. Rob Mitchell

    Rob Mitchell Well-Known
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    @Mark Carew

    Since they are now at production phase one would assume that feature completion is done and the board specifications are locked. Would you mind sharing the specs with us now? Pricing estimate? Just trying to plan and budget accordingly.

    Thanks
     
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  18. jukeman60

    jukeman60 Well-Known
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    great day !!!!! I see the blackbox thank you mark and company been waiting a long time but well worth it
    never lost hope been cheering you guys on from day 1.
    matt
     
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  19. kelvin sudlow

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    Also very keen to see it specs etc
     
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  20. GrayUK

    GrayUK Openbuilds Team Elder
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    jukeman60: Your throat must be sore!! :D:D
     
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  21. Mark Carew

    Mark Carew OpenBuilds Team
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    BlackBox_Render.525 (Medium).png

    OpenBuilds BlackBox Specifications
    • Plug and Play easy connections that work directly with the OpenBuilds Xtension wiring ecosystem

    • Muscle & Brains boards stacked configuration

    • 4 x High Powered 3.2A Stepper Drivers (Max rating 4A)

    • Auxiliary Serial Input for alternative connectivity expansion

    • USB Interface for Plug and Play

    • Power Switch (no more reaching for the power strip or unplugging)

    • Easily reachable Current Adjustment Potentiometers

    • All new high end Enclosure/Case included, with built in back-lit indication LEDs

    • Built in cooling solution/through airflow design

    • Easy V-Slot compatible Mounting

    • 3 x Endstop inputs with optional power output (Selectable 5v/24v) for use with Mechanical or powered switches such as Inductive sensor
      The inputs are protected against high voltages as well to allow for use of 24v Inductive Sensors as well

    • 1 XYZ Probe inputs

    • Up to 24v 5A switched output for coolant devices such as 24v DC pumps, solenoids, contactors, or Solid State Relays

    • Input Power Polarity protection with indicator LED

    • 10 Amp Input Power Fuse

    • LED Indicators USB Serial | Power | Polarity | Probe | Motors Enabled | 4x Fault indicators | Coolant, (Spindle/Laser/Toolhead) | RGB LED behind top cover Logo

    • Stepper Driver Fault condition (Overheat, Short Circuit, etc) indicator LEDs for each axes allows you to pinpoint trouble easier.

    • 5v PWM and 5v Direction Spindle Signals

    • 0-10v Analog Spindle Control Signal Output for VFD Spindles

    • Slave Axis configurable as a slave X, Y or Z

    • Door Interlock signal connector to allow machines with enclosures to pause/resume when the door opens/closes

    • Up to 1/32 Microstepping (Defaulted to 1/8 for higher Torque)

    • Well planned locations of all connectors to allow for logical cable management

    • Configurable Relay for generic use cases (Plasma trigger, Coolant Pumps, Spindle control, etc
    BlackBox_Render-Muscle Brains (Medium).png
    Prototype BlackBox muscal and brains - Actual color will be black

    Hope this helps to give you guys a better feel for what this project has become and how much time and effort was put into making a power package of this level.
    We are super happy with how its evolved over time and are very excited to be able offer it to the community soon.

    Thank you
    Mark Carew
     
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  22. cncshane

    cncshane New
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    Thanking all you guys at OpenBuilds Team for your dedication in pursuing your dreams (and ours)
    Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
     
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  23. jukeman60

    jukeman60 Well-Known
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    Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night
     
  24. David the swarfer

    David the swarfer OpenBuilds Team
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    looks delicious but you did not say what processor is on the board, still an atmega328p or the new ARM/SAMD21 for GRBL 2.0?
     
  25. Peter Van Der Walt

    Peter Van Der Walt OpenBuilds Team
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    Atmega328p, until such a time as Gnea becomes reality.

     
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  26. Rob Mitchell

    Rob Mitchell Well-Known
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    @Mark Carew It's been a few weeks now since the announcement that production run has started. You have posted the production specifications and they look good. During this time Spark-Concepts launched the updated XPRO V4 which spec for spec look similar to Blackbox with a few exceptions and the price point published.

    For those of us who looking at both from a specification perspective and trying to decide which to equipped it would be very much appreciated if you could publish your price. It would appear from your earlier post that we could expect to see the product around first of February (?).
     
  27. Mark Carew

    Mark Carew OpenBuilds Team
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    Hello Rob, Thank you for your interest in the BlackBox controller
    We are working out the details for pricing and at this point it looks it will be around $140-150.
    We have worked hard to create both an affordable and feature rich all-in-one driver solution that we know you guys will enjoy.
    So stay tuned... We will release updates as they happen.
     
  28. Rob Mitchell

    Rob Mitchell Well-Known
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    Awesome, thanks for the update.
     
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  29. Hal Jackson

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    Can’t wait!
     
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  30. Rob Mitchell

    Rob Mitchell Well-Known
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    @Mark Carew Does the Blackbox support external drivers? If so where on the photos are the pinouts?
     
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