PDA

View Full Version : Boxford design tools versus Mach 3



shindax
20-11-2019, 03:44 PM
Hi All
I have just bitten the bullet and bought a second hand A3HSRi in very good condition. Obviously the software doesnt come with it and to buy from Boxford will cost in the region of 600.
My question is, I have noted that many of you run Boxfords using Mach 3 which is a more reasonable price. The only thing I have to run anything on is this old Toshiba laptop with XP which already runs LaserCut 5.3
Opinions would be gratefully recieved on whether it would be wise to just buy the Boxford software or alternatively buy the Mach 3 software and use the left over funds to get a more up to date pc/laptop.
Any thoughts would be great.
Thanks
Dave

routerdriver
21-11-2019, 09:42 AM
Do you absolutely have to buy Mach 3?You could download LinuxCNC which is absolutely free and more up to date than Mach 3 .If you are unfamiliar with Linux and a bit hesitant to move from the Windows ecosystem please be aware that the download can be burned to a blank DVD which you can try in your computer by adjusting the boot sequence to boot from the DVD drive and having the live version will allow you to look around and see whats there.You then shut the computer down and it acts just as it did before.If there is enough space on the hard drive you can even make it a dual boot machine with the choice of Windows or LinuxCNC as the operating system.I did this with the venerable desktop box that runs my home made router and actually found it easier to run the Windows version of F-engrave under Wine than the native Linux version.Never lose sight of the fact that its all 1's and 0's and they all taste the same to a stepper motor.

You may be advised that a laptop isn't the best option for running a CNC machine and I expect thats true.The Vista era Dell that runs my router cost me 28 for the base unit and monitor and uses a spare keyboard and mouse I had gathering dust.The fastest way to get cutting would be to buy the dedicated software and learn it.

Roadsquad
08-06-2020, 11:10 AM
Hi Shindax

I'm exactly where you were 6 months or so ago. I have a Boxford Router and have worked my way through getting familiar with the design software and the machine itself but now I'm ready to start using it and am deciding whether to go with Boxford's software or LinuxCNC. What was your desicion in the end and could I get in touch with you directly to discuss? I'm new to this forum so not completely familiar with it yet so hopefully this message is in the right place.