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Waiting on my toy!

Discussion in 'General Talk' started by T_Robert, Jan 2, 2019.

  1. T_Robert

    T_Robert Well-Known
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    Just ordered a Workbee 1010 and I am very excited to get started on it. I'm still not quite clear in my head how the software work flow is going to work out. CNC xPRO V3 Controller Stepper Driver runs the NEMA motors. And I can use a cad program to create 3d objects. I am guessing the file format should be dxf. Or I could use a vector based drawing program. I did find inkscape yesterday. It seems to be one of the few options not owned by Adobe. It's the cam software where I have no experience. Does any one have any recommendations for a program that will help me create the cutting paths and stream the grbl code to the xPRO?

    Thx and Happy New Year!
     
  2. Peter Van Der Walt

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

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    CAD -> CAM -> HOST -> Firmware

    CAD = Anything that can deal with vectors, sometimes even bitmap
    CAM = Application to convert Drawing into GCODE (NB Make sure its Grbl compatible gcode) - for example OpenBuilds CAM Gcode Creator - Public Beta, heekscad, sheetcam, cambam, fusion360, sketchucam, and many more)
    HOST = Application to stream the gcode line by line over USB to the xpro: For example https://software.openbuilds.com , CNCjs, bCNC, Candle, GrblPanel, UniversalGCode Sender 2.0, etc
    Firmware = Grbl running on the XPRO; Read the Grbl wiki - i know its boring, but man, its valuable information: gnea/grbl
     
    Luthier likes this.
  3. T_Robert

    T_Robert Well-Known
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    Any ideas why Openbuilds is not communicating?
     
  4. Peter Van Der Walt

    Peter Van Der Walt OpenBuilds Team
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    There may be a small backlog of emails after the new years holiday and the weekend's sale. Excuse the delay, but they should get to your emails soon enough. Unless theres something i can help?
     
  5. T_Robert

    T_Robert Well-Known
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    Cool, thx for the response. I'll chill for a day or so.
     
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  6. Gary Caruso

    Gary Caruso OpenBuilds Team
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    Let me look... I'm sure somebody has a minute to talk? I think I see Mark in the far corner over there...?

    I think this is the live feed of the Openbuilds Command Center (the OCC we call it).. you know somebody is just playing solitaire, is that Mary?
    upload_2019-1-3_15-31-0.png

    :)
     
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  7. T_Robert

    T_Robert Well-Known
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    Very funny! And for my next act I have a software question, again. I noticed that Pro V3 controller is stated to be compatible with ESTLcam. So, I bought it. Seems the least expensive option out there. Does anyone have any useful experience with ESTLcam. Can I put all my eggs in that basket?
     
  8. Gary Caruso

    Gary Caruso OpenBuilds Team
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    :), yes Estlcam is my favorite, I think I've become its biggest cheerleader here.

    You have two options with Estlcam..
    1) Draw your file using the cad of your choice (save in DXF, I use "Draftsight Free") open the file in Estlcam, make XPro compatible Gcode, Open the Gcode in UGS to "send" code the GRBL already flashed on Xpro.
    2) Draw your file, and open it with estlcam and the "send" the code to the xPro using the Estlcam machine controller (after flashing the xPro using the Estlcam utility baked into it)

    I'm running an Arduino Uno ( and external 542 drivers) with Estlcam flashed on it (option 2).
    I have also been playing with STL files doing 3D cutting with good success, and many SVG files from inkscape which I have outlined in this thread.

    Cheers
    Gary
     
  9. T_Robert

    T_Robert Well-Known
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    Good news! I have an old Dell laptop with Win XP SP3 installed on it. I haven't turned it on in ten years. But it works! Now to install UniversalGcodeSender-v2.0.0-stable and ESTLcam. Had multiple issues completing the installations. First, Java no longer supports Win XP. And the version 7 Java that was installed was not what USG needed to run. After some searching I did find an offline installation of Java 8 that worked for me. jre-8u60-windows-i586, it is here Java Archive Downloads - Java SE 8. Java does not guarantee that it will work but so far so good. After installing Java I was able to get UGS working. If you do not have an Oracle account you can also download it here Download Java for Windows XP - Best Software & Apps .

    The next issue was installing ESTLcam. ESTLcam requires .NET 4 to be installed. I found a full install here Download Microsoft .NET Framework 4 (Standalone Installer) from Official Microsoft Download Center. I also had to ask Christian for an offline registration code which he was kind enough to give me.

    Both programs are working and I am getting closer to cutting my first part.

    Thx Gary for the vote of confidence.
     
    #9 T_Robert, Jan 4, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2019
    GrayUK likes this.
  10. Gary Caruso

    Gary Caruso OpenBuilds Team
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    You can always install win10 and never enter a key, it will ask for a key forever but will work fine.. also you can buy a key on eBay for cheap.
    Just an option.. ;) even better install a $30 128gb SSD before fresh win10 install and it will really feel like a new pc!
     
  11. Giarc

    Giarc Master
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    I also am a big fan of Estlcam. I use Gary for tech support.:) I love the probing function and the use of the Xbox controller to jog it around. Now I just draw everything in 2d in fusion and save it as a .dxf and load it into Estlcam.
     
  12. T_Robert

    T_Robert Well-Known
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    Just an update, I received my boxes yesterday. Have yet to open them. And there are still a couple of small items to be shipped. Unfortunately my honey do list just keeps growing. :)
     
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  13. T_Robert

    T_Robert Well-Known
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    Got my Workbee assembled yesterday. I really enjoyed the way everything works together for a simple and impressive build. Only had a couple of small hiccups. One was the M5's that connected the black corner brackets to the y axis gantry. One stripped because I think it was a little short. I purchased 4 longer screws and I am happy with the connection now. Be careful with the aluminum threads on all of the beams. They are easily cross threaded I also found one connection that had not been threaded and had to purchase a 5mm - 0.80 Metric Tap to create the threads.

    Assembled the Workbee looks great and I can't wait to move forward!
     
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  14. T_Robert

    T_Robert Well-Known
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    I am dealing with issues while trying to become familiar with my machine. I first noticed that on the y axis one side might bind up and become out of step with the other side. How do you ensure that one side of the y-axis does not get lost. Is that a matter of just keeping the speed down?

    I lubricated the screws in an attempt to improve performance.

    I would also recommend starting out with an emergency off switch at the start. Collisions with the ends is scary. I'm not ready to blow anything up. I found a nice set of switches on Amazon. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07FJ79JRJ/ref=ppx_od_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    I did notice in Estlcam the ability to set travel limits on the axis from the limit switch location.

    I'm waiting on my touch plate to arrive.

    Oh, and I had to buy a new laptop. The old laptop I had, even with win7 installed on it would not work with the usb of the pro v4 controller. :)
     
  15. Peter Van Der Walt

    Peter Van Der Walt OpenBuilds Team
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    Grbl also has Soft Limits: See gnea/grbl
    Configure $20, $130, $131, and $132 settings
     

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