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  1. Fair enough lol, so if I went for a mach3 board with stepper drivers and then removed the standard control board and wired straight to the mach board which I'm assuming is the same principle?

  2. #12
    m_c's Avatar
    Lives in East Lothian, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 3 Hours Ago Has been a member for 9-10 years. Has a total post count of 1,791. Received thanks 189 times, giving thanks to others 5 times.
    Yes.
    However, any kind of board with inbuilt drivers will usually not be ideal. Certainly the older TB based boards were pretty unreliable, however I suspect given this application you won't be pushing the stepper driver chips that hard, so it shouldn't be a problem. Most problems seemed to occur when people were trying to push the boards to the voltage/current limits.
    .
    GRBL with suitable stepper drivers would work, but you'd need to see if it will do what you need it to. Although I've looked at GRBL, it was only a quick look a while ago, so I have no idea of it's current capabilities.
    Avoiding the rubbish customer service from AluminiumWarehouse since July '13.

  3. To be honest it's not going to be doing hard work its mainly going to be a bit of engraving and some pcb work mainly with the odd bit of thin cutting, so I would guess its not going to have a hard life in that respect. It's mainly to overcome the fact that 'dr engrave' while being great for the early 90's is a bit useless now and well I want to keep the machine going and this seemed a good plan.

    GRBL would be good as I have a board, but I really don't know as both will do the job and it's really going to be for my hobby builds so nothing too critical as such.

  4. I've just seen a diagram that has cleared this all up for me in respect of controller and driver boards, sorry all was being a bit dense

  5. #15
    Hey if you dont know, you dont know!

    At least now you do know and can help the next man when he comes along needing help :).

    Good luck with the conversion, dont forget to do a build log so we can see your progress and success.
    .Me

  6. #16
    On the subject of integrated Break-Out and Driver boards, if you buy one integrated lump that does everything then the whole thing may be scrap in the event that one part of it fails, if you use separates then you can swap out one bad part in the event of failure, swapping over to fault find if required,

    - Nick
    You think that's too expensive? You're not a Model Engineer are you? :D

  7. #17
    IIRC on the CAMM3 the stepper inputs were from a Z80 PIO so a printer port is already massive overkill and a break out board would be borderline ridiculous

  8. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Robin Hewitt View Post
    IIRC on the CAMM3 the stepper inputs were from a Z80 PIO so a printer port is already massive overkill and a break out board would be borderline ridiculous
    A printer port provides those without electronics experience a very simple and quite cheap way to produce the required signals to run stepper drivers with a cheap ex-corporate PC, LinuxCNC/Mach3 and Linux or the OS specified on the PC's OEM license sticker.
    A printer port provides those with electronics experience a very simple, quite cheap and very quick way to produce the required signals to run stepper drivers with a cheap ex-corporate PC, LinuxCNC/Mach3 and Linux or the OS specified on the PC's OEM license sticker.
    Given that a BOB's primary function is to protect the computer and parallel port from an external electrical device I'm not really seeing what would be in the least bit ridiculous about what is simply good electronic practice.
    Unlike some "lighter solutions" LinuxCNC/Mach3 support fairly standard and complete G-Code flavours allowing utilisation of a wide range of CAM solutions without worrying too much about what is/isn't supported.

    - Nick
    Last edited by magicniner; 25-10-2016 at 01:57 PM. Reason: Failure to correctly spell much
    You think that's too expensive? You're not a Model Engineer are you? :D

  9. #19
    Good post Nick.

    For every electrical wizz kid there are 10 that aren't.
    Last edited by John S; 25-10-2016 at 03:05 PM.
    John S -

  10. The Following User Says Thank You to John S For This Useful Post:


  11. Good point Nick, the GRBL one I have the drivers are replaceable but I know where you are coming from in the serviceability aspect as replacing the lot could be expensive.

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