Touching off easily
CNC Part 4.1 - Config
This is part 4.1 or my portal milling sequel. It is tightly coupled to Part4 but specifically handles settings for the CNC software that I use.
- EdingCnc V5A-4E processor board or similar
- Interface Advanced PRO breakout board or similar
- Adapter Board or similar
These components are necessary to translate the commands created by the CNC software into physical-world signals that can actually interact with matter. The breakout board is controlled by the CNC processor and provides relay outputs for the router and my dust collector so I can have them switched on using my laptop. There are also analog voltage outputs e.g. to control spindle RPM and multiple inputs e.g. to read reference switch status and for signaling events back to the CNC software.
Of course there are many manufacturers of these circuits out there, but I happen to be using the above ecosystem so I can only speak for those. The underlying technology is the same, and although you might have a different user interface or communication channel like USB, your software will likely provide similar if not identical settings.
Setup screen 1
As discussed in-depth in this post, the green frame shows kinematics settings. A negative sign in the
Steps/[mm] indicates that the stepper motor direction is inverted. Note that the
reversing play field can remain 0 when ball screws are used. I’m using “simple kinematics” so the coordinate system is cartesian.
Reference / Emergency stop
This section controls how the software interptets signal levels for input switches on the interface board. Although I’m sure I wired all inputs “normally closed” to avoid undetected cable rupture, I had to invert the input for the emergency switch.
These settings are very specific to the machine you’re using. I wanted the spindle to stop when I pause a job, and to automatically restart before continuing the job.
approachFeedparameter is a bit confusing because the default value is really low here. Its meaning is the following: It’s the Z-axis’s downwards feed when a job had been paused and the Z-axis moved upwards. When you press “continue”, the Z-axis will be lowered with this feed and when at target depth, the job will continue normally. I entered
600mm/min as a value most endmills should be capable of dealing with.
Setup screen 2
I wanted referencing/homing to be mandatory before being able to load a job or to rapid-move the machine’s axis.
I also selected
automatic tool change although I don’t have a tool changer because otherwise my tool change macro helping me do the manual tool change wouldn’t be called.
To account for the interface/ breakout board’s hardware setup, I had to invert some software outputs so they’d do what I’d expect them to. If I didn’t invert
PWM1 for example, the spindle would start at full speed when I just wanted
5000rpm and vice versa.
Parking position G28 / G30
I set my parking positions in a way that allow me to work more efficiently. One of these commands would make the axes move to XY-zero of my fence that I’d also make workpiece-zero in CAM so zeroing in becomes really easy.
The other one is set to a point where the reference switches of all three axes are nearly pressed so homing the machine after startup becomes both easy and quick.
Note the monitoring window. You can enter a variable from the RS274 NGC interpreter range and have their current values displayed here. This comes in handy when you want to debug macros or just want to read internal parameters like measured tool length etc.
Strategy and how to
engrave and cut
the struggle to successful builds
Faster Engrave Algo
for CNC: Decision aid
Decision aid, Pros & Cons
3D signs - tutorial
Job preparation and quick demo
of an audio amplifier
From investigation to problem solution
From Pixel to Vector graphics
Symptoms of insufficient spindle power
Beginner CNC issue: Speeds/Feeds
Automatic Z-referencing, Tool length, Tool changes
EdingCNC Settings & Variables
Software/Hardware setup & kinematics
Assembling Sorotec’s Basicline 0607
Switch box setup
Entry-point and questions
Circuit & Application examples
USB-PD power supply explained
Can I use a Metabo/CAS battery for my system?
How to set protective voltage & current limits
Current inrush limiters explained
Electronics knowledge: TVS diodes
Or how to kill your circuits
How to properly talk to VideoLan’s VLC player
Prototype build, issues, improvement ideas for Revision2
How To: First steps with FreeCAD
Professionalizing circuits for AnywhereAmps
AnywhereAmp Alpha’s simple single-supply preamp
Design, folding, stability, amplifiers
Evolving the mobile, foldable instrument combo
Fix ‘ERROR: favicon not found’
Export the instructions from Markdown to PDF! but how?
Why some images display OK locally but won’t on Github
How to make ToC sticky
How to solve issues with disappearing posts
Configure: landing page’s header image, Navigation