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New Build Questions

Discussion in 'General Talk' started by Casey C. Neal, May 29, 2018.

  1. Casey C. Neal


    Mar 25, 2018
    Likes Received:
    Very new to cnc and building one for that matter
    Started with a laser engraver and am hooked I want to do more
    I am building a c-beam type of machine
    #1 using a ardruino board to run machine, ok or should I change up to a more expensive board?
    pro's and con's
    #2 confuzed on handling speed of router...Planning to use a trim router plugged into 110
    How would I handle any speed but full speed since it doesn't go through any kind of computer board?
    #3 what's a better setup...Mount power supply and electronics to machine or make a power/computer side box?
    Thanks to all replies
    Just trying to find my way
    MaryD likes this.
  2. Awestruck

    Awestruck New

    Dec 17, 2017
    Likes Received:
    For #2 - If your router has a speed control on it, then you usually set it once per job or change it as you change out bits to the appropriate speed. I have seen some upgrade/mod kits related to changing your router so that it could be computer controlled, however I don't feel like I've seen those talked much about around here.

    For #3 - personally, I like to keep electronics protected and away from vibration of a machine. Although that depends what kind of machine you are building, foot print, your workshop, etc. I also like to keep cable neat, tidy and short. So this idea can cause a tension with removing the electronics. For instance, the driver board to the stepper motors.
  3. Gary Caruso

    Gary Caruso OpenBuilds Volunteer
    Staff Member Moderator Builder

    May 19, 2016
    Likes Received:
    1) Nothing wrong with using an arduino for control, you will then be using GRBL or Estlcam..
    With GRBL you can use Universal Gcode Sender (UGS) or GRBL panel are the big two people are using to control the arduino.
    With Estlcam it has it's own control software, it's basic but powerful. I switched from UGS to estlcam because of trochoidal milling and how easy and good the cam is and i'm very happy with it.
    the Pros;
    cheap, USB, lots of openbuild forum help, performance is great for how cheap it is (get a real Arduino they are $16 on ebay)
    can't use Mach3, limited to 3 axis (XYZ), going to need a screw shield (~$9) to make wiring practical.

    The pros outweigh the cons for me, I'm using discrete drivers anyway (dq542ma's) so the arduino is just sending step pulse and direction to the drivers, it's not hard for the arduino to do.
    for more powerful stepper motors (higher current), avoid the all in one solutions with drivers built in, they are limited to about 2 amps.

    2) there is an output on the arduino for spindle on/off, use a solid state relay (SSR) hooked up to that output to switch the 110vac to the router.
    and like Awestruck said you set the speed control on the router to the speed appropriate for that job before hitting the start button on a run.

    3) I agree with Awestruck
  4. Giarc

    Giarc OpenBuilds Team
    Staff Member Moderator Builder Resident Builder

    Jan 24, 2015
    Likes Received:
    If your router has a dial for adjusting speed, there should be a chart in the owners manual that associates the various rpms with a corresponding number on the dial. This is the case with the Makitas.

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