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Control board for Mach 3 & Mach 4

Discussion in 'Controller Boards' started by Tom Sanders, May 28, 2017.

  1. Tom Sanders

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    what are my best options for a control board for Mach 3 or 4 I have been using a arduino and GRBL to this point but would like to use Mach software it seems to be more of a standard.
     
  2. Rob Blaauw

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  3. Joe Santarsiero

    Joe Santarsiero OB addict
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  4. Rob Blaauw

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    Thanks for the link the have a lot of interesting products.
     
  5. Tom Sanders

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    Ok thanks for the info, do you recommend going parallel or usb?
     
  6. Tom Sanders

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    Ok great thanks for the reply!!!!

    I just seems so confusing on which board to buy???? I want good board that is reasonable priced that will work with Mach 3 or Mach 4 and there are so many options out there....

    Do you have any idea what a majority are using?
     
  7. Tom Sanders

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    Ok, so do you recommend any usb control board?
     
  8. Joe Santarsiero

    Joe Santarsiero OB addict
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    I've read enough gripes against noisy usb cables that it turned me to Ethernet to LPT. The downside is that I had to use a seperate power supply for 5V to the board. I just put a little 5V wallwart in the control cab. An upside is that I'm not limited by usb cable length.
     
  9. Tom Sanders

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    Ok that makes sense!! What Ethernet board do you have?
     
  10. Joe Santarsiero

    Joe Santarsiero OB addict
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    I use a warp9 ess. little pricey though. I think there are a few others out there that are decent too. BTW, this is an extra device between the PC and the break out board.
     
  11. Tom Sanders

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    Ok thanks for getting back with me! The breakout board is where your steeper drivers plug in right?
     
  12. Joe Santarsiero

    Joe Santarsiero OB addict
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    Yes. The BOB sends and receives signals. So, limits, e-stop, ssr, spindle control, etc all interface with the BOB. Some BOB's are basic and straightforward others are feature rich.
    Draw yourself a block diagram of all the components and connections you are going to have to determine if a BOB will work for you.
     
  13. Tom Sanders

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    Ok at this point I have been using a Arduino board and my drivers plug right into it.

    So with the setup your talking about, I will need the Ethernet Controller, BOB, and then my drivers hooked to my stepper motors right?
     
  14. Joe Santarsiero

    Joe Santarsiero OB addict
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    Yes. What drivers and power supply?
     
  15. Tom Sanders

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  16. Joe Santarsiero

    Joe Santarsiero OB addict
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  17. Tom Sanders

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    Ok so 48v is better? More power?

    I assume the drivers will still work with the 48v power supply
     
  18. Joe Santarsiero

    Joe Santarsiero OB addict
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    The drivers are rated up to 48v. The motors will be a bit snappier than at 24v because of faster current delivery. Power is voltage times current so in a sense..yes. more power :)
     
  19. Tom Sanders

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    Ok makes sense! So if you use the warp9 ess controller what BOB do you use?
     
  20. Joe Santarsiero

    Joe Santarsiero OB addict
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    I use a driver breakout combination. My BOB is built into a common box as the drivers. It's similar to the Gecko G540.
    Leadshine MX4660 4-Axis Stepper Motor Drive with I/O's

    You'll notice it has two port connections. A LPT and a DB26(basically a 26pin lpt). They're both connected to 2 of the 3 db26 ports of the ESS and their pins are assigned by me in the Mach software. For a future project I plan on utilizing the 3rd db26 port of the ESS to an analog MPG controller. Then I will assign db26 connection pins in Mach. I want to optically isolate the MPG instead of hardwiring it directly to the ESS.
     

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