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    DIY plasma cnc electronics
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    Still hacking a few different plans and combinations for a cnc plasma table. But wondering how difficult/easy it is to setup my own electronics kit. Does the software allow for inputs of the motors' parameters, etc? I know enough to buy the right hardware that'll work together, but never had any experience setting up hardware with software. Built a few PC's in my day, and can run Pro/E (Creo) & MasterCAM all day (that was already setup for me).

    Anyone? I'd rather not dig through the CNC forums on other sites.

    "Hello. My name is Dan and I'm addicted to buggies."
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    Re: DIY plasma cnc electronics
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    The Bob Ross of MBN Bullnerd's Avatar
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    Talk to and check out JGS turbos threads here.He's covered quite a bit of it.
    "Speed is time-time is speed"-Dennis Hopper

    Quote Originally Posted by TALON View Post
    did you use a special bigfoot camera or something ,you know all blurry could be a tree stump kinda thing .
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    Re: DIY plasma cnc electronics
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    Ha, I was there earlier today checking out his 2x4 table. That's all I really need. It seems within my means, but simply some unknown.

    Can't justify spending like $6k on a 2x2 Torchmate setup. Would rather find a good X/Z gantry, build the Y out of 80/20 rail, and then buy a brand-named electronics kit. I want to start with a 2x4 or 4x4 with the capability to expand, and NOT have to shell out the big $'s for anyones "growth series". Strategy is to save some $'s on assembly, programming and such and then put the greater investment into a nicer torch and quality electronics.

    EDIT: Slow day at the office, so I'm gonna go troll some CNC forums. Need to read some geek-chat about this stuff. =)
    "Hello. My name is Dan and I'm addicted to buggies."
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    Re: DIY plasma cnc electronics
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    Bend-Tech Dragon Master
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    As far as electronics if you want super smooth and quality , go with a geckodrive G540. For the ultimate cheap rig I've used the china TB6560 boards but Gecko is worth the extra $200 . cncrouterparts.com has the hard to find parts like gecko motor cables and motors with plugs instead of just flying lead motors. I'm building cnc plasma tables and I'm only selling Geckodrives. As far as electronics you need - G540 driver 3.5 amp motors cables and don't forget the 48vdc power supply.
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    Re: DIY plasma cnc electronics
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    So there are the stepper motors & drivers...power supply...limit switches, etc...this is all connected to the control box...which is connected to the PC...and then something like Mach3 is able to connect, calibrate, operate, and orchestrate to the inputed G-code? Is that correct?

    Those are the "dots" I'm trying to connect. Sorry, I'm a mechanical engineer and DIY auto & home electrician -- not up to speed on mfg electronics. I can source the right parts, build the table and gantry, and I understand the hi-freq woes that can arise...but getting the electronics to talk is where I start to fumble.


    EDIT: Another slow day, so did some more reading.
    Last edited by DMoneyAllstar; 12-20-2012 at 02:41 PM.
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    Re: DIY plasma cnc electronics
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    So with a Gecko G540 driver, Mach3, 48v PS, 2 medium Nema34 steppers and 1 larger (1600) Nema34 stepper...that's pretty much the basic 3-axis cnc package for plasma/router, correct? And Mach3 is the "conductor" behind the orchestra, right? Still need a breakout board in the middle, right? The G540 driver can run up to (4) motors, rather than a driver for each motor, right? PHEW!

    If I got that all right, then I think I've finally got it.

    So we're talking like $1000-$1200 for a GOOD DEPENDABLE full electronics setup including refurb laptop.

    Then after that, it's down to the gear tracks, pulleys, belts, cables, cable carriers, and structural stuff...then of course the torch and compressor.

    RIGHT? lol
    Last edited by DMoneyAllstar; 12-20-2012 at 02:54 PM.
    "Hello. My name is Dan and I'm addicted to buggies."
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    Re: DIY plasma cnc electronics
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    The Bob Ross of MBN Bullnerd's Avatar
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    Maybe JG can hook you up with a package(not his package),and a schematic if you buy the hardware from him?

    This is good stuff to get out on the table here.
    "Speed is time-time is speed"-Dennis Hopper

    Quote Originally Posted by TALON View Post
    did you use a special bigfoot camera or something ,you know all blurry could be a tree stump kinda thing .
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    Re: DIY plasma cnc electronics
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    Senior Member N8ball's Avatar
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    I have been eyeballing the old plasma machine at work for about 4 years. It is old and the electronics don't talk to any of the software we have. It only gets used to cut basic shapes that are in the machine's library. I want to rebuild it and update the electronics. This is the kind of information I need to make it happen. It has a 5x10 water table which would be more than enough for me. I just have to talk the boss into getting rid of the old dinosaur.
    Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.- Ferris Bueler
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    Re: DIY plasma cnc electronics
    #9
    Bend-Tech Dragon Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by DMoneyAllstar View Post
    So with a Gecko G540 driver, Mach3, 48v PS, 2 medium Nema34 steppers and 1 larger (1600) Nema34 stepper...that's pretty much the basic 3-axis cnc package for plasma/router, correct? And Mach3 is the "conductor" behind the orchestra, right? Still need a breakout board in the middle, right? The G540 driver can run up to (4) motors, rather than a driver for each motor, right? PHEW!

    If I got that all right, then I think I've finally got it.

    So we're talking like $1000-$1200 for a GOOD DEPENDABLE full electronics setup including refurb laptop.

    Then after that, it's down to the gear tracks, pulleys, belts, cables, cable carriers, and structural stuff...then of course the torch and compressor.

    RIGHT? lol
    IIRC the G540 only supports up to NEMA23 motors. Does NOT need any BOB (breakout board).
    This would be a good kit...
    4 Axis Electronics Kit | CNCRouterParts
    4 axis means 2 motors slaved together to move the gantry.
    Then add this
    http://www.candcnc.com/LCTHC.html
    arc voltage based torch height control is KEY to good tip life and good straight cuts.
    Also a good time to order your MACH3 license for a good price.

    If your a mastercam master and can write custom posts thats all you will need for CAM. If not I recommend sheetCAM, inexpensive and comes with several cost saving pierce options.
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    Re: DIY plasma cnc electronics
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    Senior Member ironknot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DMoneyAllstar View Post
    Still hacking a few different plans and combinations for a cnc plasma table. But wondering how difficult/easy it is to setup my own electronics kit. Does the software allow for inputs of the motors' parameters, etc? I know enough to buy the right hardware that'll work together, but never had any experience setting up hardware with software. Built a few PC's in my day, and can run Pro/E (Creo) & MasterCAM all day (that was already setup for me).

    Anyone? I'd rather not dig through the CNC forums on other sites.


    TheBackShed.com - DIY CNC

    Breakout Boards: What are they?

    http://www.cncrouterparts.com/3-axis...-kit-p-74.html

    CNC Cookbook: Cookbook Articles

    Ivan's Garage DIY CNC Plasma

    CNC Plasma Tables | CNC Kits | CNC Ganrty Systems

    I found these useful in explaining the basic and maybe getting an idea of how these things go together.
    Thanks Ironknot

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