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Thread: Plcm-e4

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  1. #1
    I'm currently trying to decide what motion controller/BOB combo I'm going to use for my new router build.
    I'm going with 3 axis, dual stepper on x-axis, so I need slaving and at least one extra axis to add a 3d printer addon (I know, not the best 3d printer).

    I can't really decide what to get at the moment, probably leaning toward either an ESS + some random BOB or a PLCM-E3 with some BOB (currently undecided). ESS is hard to get in EU though.
    Lo and behold, I then stumble upon a board called PLCM-E4 on purelogics site. It appears to be a slightly slimmed down version of the E3, but with a BOB integrated.
    http://www.purelogic.ru/files/downlo...er/PLCM-E4.pdf + google translate works pretty good.

    What do you think? Should I send an email to Purelogic, see if I can buy it?

    Or, should I get a PLCM-E3, if so what BOB should I get?
    http://www.zappautomation.co.uk/elec...out-board.html looks like it's both the B1 bob and an E3 if I go by the pictures and the price tag, but the description is rather vague. Does this include the E3?

    I realise this is a bit of a ramble, but I'm rather confused at the moment, trying to decide what to get. Cost is a bit of a concern, and I wouldn't want to spend as much on a bob as I do on the motion controller as it seems like some people do.

    Any tips?
    Last edited by Tumblebeer; 13-07-2014 at 07:30 PM.

  2. Quote Originally Posted by Tumblebeer View Post
    I realise this is a bit of a ramble, but I'm rather confused at the moment, trying to decide what to get. Cost is a bit of a concern, and I wouldn't want to spend as much on a bob as I do on the motion controller as it seems like some people do.

    Any tips?
    Don't short cut the BOB esp with a Motion control card. BOB's are the single biggest bottleneck and pain in the arse if poor quality.

    I'd enquire about the E4 but got a feeling it's still in R&D.

    The B1 is just a BOB but it's designed to take full advantage of the E3 and allows full use of all the I/O. It's essentially 2 Bob's in one with PWM spindle control.
    If you don't need all the I/O the E3 provides then you can get away with just using the PLC6x or the PLC4x-G2. The G2 provides PWM spindle control the 6x doesn't.

    If your going for the ESS then I'd strongly suggest you go for the PMDX126.
    Last edited by JAZZCNC; 13-07-2014 at 08:31 PM.

  3. #3
    Neale's Avatar
    Lives in Plymouth, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 21 Hours Ago Has been a member for 6-7 years. Has a total post count of 1,375. Received thanks 262 times, giving thanks to others 8 times.
    I was getting a bit confused about this as well, when I was looking at the Zapp site earlier (and especially as I haven't found decent English documentation for these devices). Thanks for the additional info.
    One more question, though - when these boards talk about PWM spindle speed control, I am assuming that they have some kind of PWM->true analogue converter on board, which takes a PWM speed signal from Mach3 and gives a 0-10V (usually) signal that connects directly to the VFD. Is that right? Nothing else needed for Mach3 spindle speed control?

    - Brian

  4. Quote Originally Posted by Neale View Post
    Nothing else needed for Mach3 spindle speed control?
    Yep that's correct just set mach3 to output PWM and away you go.!

  5. #5
    gregors's Avatar
    Lives in Telford, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 17 Hours Ago Has been a member for 0-1 years. Has a total post count of 17. Received thanks 1 times, giving thanks to others 0 times.
    first, hi and sorry to bring up a old post,i brought one of these and im yet to connect it up. I am a little confused as to were the step,dir enable are on this board,do i just pick which ever?
    regards

  6. Quote Originally Posted by gregors View Post
    first, hi and sorry to bring up a old post,i brought one of these and im yet to connect it up. I am a little confused as to were the step,dir enable are on this board,do i just pick which ever?
    regards
    Do you have a breakout board with it.? If yes which one.

    Don't connect directly to the motion controller because you could damage it.

  7. #7
    gregors's Avatar
    Lives in Telford, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 17 Hours Ago Has been a member for 0-1 years. Has a total post count of 17. Received thanks 1 times, giving thanks to others 0 times.
    it came with this, im guessing i connect the steppers driver through the virtual lpt thenClick image for larger version. 

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  8. Quote Originally Posted by gregors View Post
    it came with this, im guessing i connect the steppers driver through the virtual lpt thenClick image for larger version. 

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    That's just a DB25 terminal block. You really need a proper breakout board that offers some signal isolation to protect the controller. The breakout board will also provide a few other features like Spindle speed controller and relay.

    It's been a while since I used the PLCM-e4 so I've forgotten exactly what it provides regards input/outputs etc but think i'm correct in saying to get full use you'll need either dedicated board that offers enough I/O to make full use or will need 2 or more standard breakout boards.

    I'll see if can find the manual to refresh my memory.!

  9. #9
    gregors's Avatar
    Lives in Telford, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 17 Hours Ago Has been a member for 0-1 years. Has a total post count of 17. Received thanks 1 times, giving thanks to others 0 times.
    Quote Originally Posted by JAZZCNC View Post
    That's just a DB25 terminal block. You really need a proper breakout board that offers some signal isolation to protect the controller. The breakout board will also provide a few other features like Spindle speed controller and relay.

    It's been a while since I used the PLCM-e4 so I've forgotten exactly what it provides regards input/outputs etc but think i'm correct in saying to get full use you'll need either dedicated board that offers enough I/O to make full use or will need 2 or more standard breakout boards.

    I'll see if can find the manual to refresh my memory.!


    https://purelogic.ru/data/docs/elekt..._manual_en.pdf

    link to the manual, to be honist i just wanted a all in one type board, if theis gets to confusing i might just get rid and buy a CSMIO/IP-M type

  10. #10
    Doddy's Avatar
    Lives in Preston, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 9 Hours Ago Has been a member for 6-7 years. Has a total post count of 678. Received thanks 120 times, giving thanks to others 27 times. Referred 1 members to the community.
    Firstly, I'll admit to being cautious to reply - because if you have to ask the question then you clearly are less than confident with what you're doing - don't take that the wrong way.

    Jazz is mostly right - however I think you can afford to skip a few of the nice-to-haves. You can use the Port#1 outputs to directly drive your stepper drivers - the drivers pretty much all have Opto Isolated inputs, so the risk of damage is limited to getting your wiring correct in the first place. The Russian manual is shite - there's no specification for the buffered outputs but lets assume that they can source 20mA at 5V - then designate yourself the step/dir for each axis (chose just one to start with!) and configure Mach accordingly, and wire the output to the driver step+ / dir+ inputs (two, one for each) and ground the step- / dir- inputs on the driver.

    For inputs (limit switches etc) I wouldn't use the Port#1 inputs directly without a BoB, for Jazz's reason of isolation - but then the main board has 16 isolated inputs that you can use - go for them. You also have a 0-10V output for the spindle analogue input and any of 8 relays to help control the spindle & other bits. Plenty to go at. To answer your original question - yes, you have to define the mapping of step/dirs yourself to the port #1 outputs. Leave the EN's open for now on the stepper drivers.

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