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Buying or Building / Questions

Discussion in 'General Talk' started by FlopearedMule, Aug 27, 2019.

  1. FlopearedMule

    FlopearedMule Well-Known
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    I am very interested in buying or maybe building a CNC router from Open Builds.
    I have a couple questions for all you guys out there.

    I'm looking at the 40" x 40" for $1,299.98. What else do I need to get this machine ready to go?

    If I add all the options in to the price....wiring kit, 24V power supply bundles, Nema 23 motors, driver board (crossed out), and router. The price changes to over $1,800. What about Mach 3? I will still have to purchase this right?? Who can I talk to and figure this out? I can't find a phone number anywhere.


    Is there a set of plans with a parts list if I want to build a machine myself? Sorry, I am not very good at navigating a website. I'm guessing all these questions have been asked before. Maybe someone can give me a link to find some more reading.

    I just called the place that sells the X Carve, and that machine comes with everything I need. The only thing I don't like is the web based operating system.

    If someone could help me out, I would greatly appreciate it.
     
  2. FlopearedMule

    FlopearedMule Well-Known
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    Here is another website with a kit. Can I buy these machines in any other place? where do you guys recommend to purchase?
    thanks

    WorkBee Full CNC Kit
     
  3. Peter Van Der Walt

    Peter Van Der Walt OpenBuilds Team
    Staff Member Moderator Resident Builder Project Maker Builder

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    Best way to get in contact with the store for product / ordering questions is at [email protected]


    No :) the controller runs open source Grbl, no Mach3 needed. Free software: lots of options. Easy beginner software like openbuilds-CONTROL from OpenBuilds Software - FREE Software for CNC Control: OpenBuilds CONTROL and OpenBuilds CAM, cncjs, bcnc, ugs2, candle for grbl, and many many more options, you can literally pick and choose on that works for you. (these are the equivalents to Mach3)

    You also need CAM software (equivalent to Easel (web based) in your question): We offer a basic web based on as well (OpenBuilds CAM Gcode Creator - Public Beta) but recommend Vectric Software - OpenBuilds Part Store or Fusion360 too
     
  4. FlopearedMule

    FlopearedMule Well-Known
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    No :) the controller runs open source Grbl, no Mach3 needed. Free software: lots of options. Easy beginner software like openbuilds-CONTROL from OpenBuilds Software - FREE Software for CNC Control: OpenBuilds CONTROL and OpenBuilds CAM, cncjs, bcnc, ugs2, candle for grbl, and many many more options, you can literally pick and choose on that works for you. (these are the equivalents to Mach3)

    You also need CAM software (equivalent to Easel (web based) in your question): We offer a basic web based on as well (OpenBuilds CAM Gcode Creator - Public Beta) but recommend Vectric Software - OpenBuilds Part Store or Fusion360 too[/QUOTE]


    Peter,
    Thanks for your quick response! I have access to V Carve Pro at my work. So Cam/Cad is taken care of. I Might purchase my own copy someday. I will have to check on Grbl?? never heard of it. I have only used Mach 3.(the free version)
    From what I read, if I have over 500 lines....Mach 3 needs to be purchased.


    Is the website... Sparks Concepts have anything to do with this open builds parts store?
     
  5. Peter Van Der Walt

    Peter Van Der Walt OpenBuilds Team
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    Mach3 is old and mostly dead in the hobby space. (even the pros moved on to mach4 with mesa cards, or linuxcnc)

    Grbl basically = what Mach3 was instead of running on a PC it runs inside a MCU on the controller. Software just sends the gcode to Grbl and in turn it converts it to motion steps etc, See github.com/gnea/grbl although you really dont need to peek under that hood, its all handled for you. Just checkout software.openbuilds.com (similar GUI to Mach3 - what you will be looking at)
     
  6. Peter Van Der Walt

    Peter Van Der Walt OpenBuilds Team
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  7. FlopearedMule

    FlopearedMule Well-Known
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    Thanks Peter,

    I just talked to Mike, and he answered a lot of my questions. It looks like the Lead 1010 is the way to go for me.
    I'm wondering,
    - are the motor drivers built into this black box with the software, or do I have to buy the drivers?
    - do I plug the black box into the usb of my pc/laptop? eithernet?
    -If I want to someday build a bigger, better machine, can I use this black box?
    -Grbl software, can it be loaded on a PC?
     
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  8. sharmstr

    sharmstr Master
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    Yes, the motor drivers are in the blackbox. OpenBuilds BlackBox 4X Documentation

    Yes, it connects to your pc via usb.

    Yes it will work on bigger machines, depending on what you mean by bigger. The limitations are the motors/power supply. Physical size of the machine doesnt matter. I use one on my 1500 x 1000.

    GRBL is in the blackbox, not on your computer. As Peter mentioned, on the software side, you need something that speaks grbl. OB Control is a great place to start. OB Control runs on your computer.

    For VCarve Pro, use the built in grbl post processors. You will have to remove the tool call lines from the generated gcode. Or, you can modify the post processor so it doesnt even generate tool calls. Here's how I did it with VCarve Desktop: https://openbuilds.com/threads/vcarve-grbl-post-processor-mods.14580/

    Having access to VCarve is great, but I have a feeling you'll get annoyed that you dont have a copy at home. I'm constantly making tweaks to my CAM depending on what the machine is doing.
     
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  9. FlopearedMule

    FlopearedMule Well-Known
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    Hey everyone,
    I haven't bought anything yet, but I'm back home now trying to figure this out.
    I'm going to get my own version of VCarve, so tell me if I have this right?
    I do all my drawing in VCarve, then create the gcode in VCarve. (Vcarve has the post processor??)
    Then I open OB control, or UGS (these are the gcode senders).......import the gcode into OB control, and then I send/stream gcode to my GRBL controller to start moving all my stepper motors??
    I am thinking I will build my own controller, just for the fun of it. I bought a Arduino mega with a shield and 4 drivers last night on ebay.

    I used to run, and program a Fadal VMC for over 10 years, and I used Virtual Gibbs for the CAD/CAM software. It was really easy and I had all kinds of phone support. The way it worked with Gibbs and the Fadal...........I would draw what I want on gibbs, create a tool path, run the post processor, then send the program to the Fadal via rs232 port.
    It looks like VCarve will be similar, but I need the OB control, (or some people are telling me UGS on github) to send the gcode to my Arduino/GRBL controller. Using a USB instead of a rs232???? It is confusing.

    Once I figure this out, I think it will pretty easy. Its learning the process and the software that is hard for me. Hard to teach an old man new tricks :)
     
  10. sharmstr

    sharmstr Master
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    Basically yes.

    model/drawing -> CAM -> grbl post processor -> grbl sender -> grbl control board -> motors move :)

    You got it. vCarve as well as OpenBuilds CAM will let you import drawings as well, so you are not limited to drawing within those apps.

    You will certainly learn a lot by building your own controller. My biggest hurdle was EMI and limit switches. Have fun!
     
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  11. Giarc

    Giarc Master
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    If you are doing long carves and you ordered drv8825 drivers (or any other "3d printer " drivers) for your shield, you will need a very good cooling system or they may overheat and shut down in the middle of a job. I used those when I first started and quickly realized I needed something more reliable to use with my Arduino so I got the DQ542MA drivers and have never had a problem since.
     
  12. FlopearedMule

    FlopearedMule Well-Known
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    LOL That's exactly what I ordered! I am only going to do some testing with some little Nema 17 motors I found in the garbage at work. They are just going to sit on my table an turn. If I get everything to work, I will be ordering big motors and drivers, so its all good. Thanks
     

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  13. Joe Reed

    Joe Reed New
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    When you say...
    model/drawing -> CAM -> grbl post processor -> grbl sender -> grbl control board -> motors move
    Is drawing and CAM done in computer and grbl post processor -> grbl sender -> grbl control board -> motors move done in the controller box such as BlackBox?
     
  14. Giarc

    Giarc Master
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    The computer is used to design your part, then to generate the CAM file (gcode). Depending on what CAD program was used to design the part, you may need to use a post processor. If using the blackbox, your computer sends the gcode to the blackbox as it is cutting.
     
  15. FlopearedMule

    FlopearedMule Well-Known
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    Giarc
    I'm curious, the code is sent to the black box as the cnc machine is cutting. It must buffer some so there is no lag in the cnc cutting?? Is there any problems with the cnc machine waiting for the next line of code? how many lines will it buffer? Could you explain how that works?
     
  16. sharmstr

    sharmstr Master
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    There's two buffers. Everything you need to know is in the grbl wiki: gnea/grbl
     
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  17. Peter Van Der Walt

    Peter Van Der Walt OpenBuilds Team
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    But more importantly "not too worry, hasnt been a real issue for anyone except maybe really really fast laser engravers with really really small (0.0.1mm sections)"

    5 years ago on Grbl 0.8 running 9600 baud, sure you will still find old forum posts complaining, but Grbl 1.1 is way faster 115200 baud, etc
     
    #17 Peter Van Der Walt, Sep 13, 2019 at 4:44 PM
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2019 at 10:00 AM
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  18. FlopearedMule

    FlopearedMule Well-Known
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    Thanks for the link. I don't understand some of the terminology, but I get the general idea. Funny, I had a hard time trying to navigate the Github/wiki, but I think I'm finally starting to get used to it. I've been playing with VCarve Pro a lot the last couple of days and I am liking it so far. The tutorials are great!

    Have another question for you guys.
    So, I want to start doing a lot of carving on wood when I get my machine. I know the lead screw machines are more solid for holding position......but,
    When you have to go back and forth many times, how long does the ball screw last? It seems maybe my machine would be better if I bought it with the belt for the x and y axis?? I want the size of my machine to be at least 3' x 3'.
    What you guys think about only cutting wood and a lot of carving 3D pictures? would a belt be better?
     
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  19. Giarc

    Giarc Master
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    GitHub was confusing to me at first, as well. But after looking at that page a million times whenever I was stumped, it has gotten easier.

    As for your transmission choice, belts stretch, screws don't. You will get better resolution from a screw. The screw is using a delrin nut to move the machine. I can not see a plastic with a very low coefficient of friction wearing a screw down any time soon. Delrin is used a lot for bushings because of these properties. I have been using my machine for about three years and have only had to adjust the delrin nut once a few months ago when I noticed a little backlash due to wear on the nut...or the screw that takes the backlash out had worked loose a little.
     

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