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Spindle Control HowTo Help
« on: February 02, 2009, 10:09:36 PM »
Hello everyone,

I completed a home build machine last year and I'm now looking to do my first enhancement.  I would appreciate any help in locating some how-to or general guides on adding circuitry to enable M03 and M05.  I have enough electronics background to get by (maybe to be dangerous), enough to build the "HobbyCNC" controller that runs my machine.  Here are my parameters: 
  Mach3 (obviously)
  HobbyCNC controller kit
  Spindle is a standard Craftsman 2.5 HP router, 115v, 11Amps.

Any guidance or input is appreciated.   Here is a link to my machine for anyone interested...


Thanks in advance,

Offline jimpinder

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Re: Spindle Control HowTo Help
« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2009, 01:35:02 PM »
If all you are wanting is M3 (on) and M5 off, this is provided for in Mach 3. There are four outputs which are fairly general to most CNC and this is M3 M4 and the two coolant switches. I am away from my machine at the moment so I can't remember them and I am using someone elses lap top - but they are something like M6 and M7or M7 and M8.

Whatever - if you look at Conf1g/Ports and Pins/Spindles drive, you can allocate these functions to outputs (usually 1,2,3 and 4)
On Config/Port and Pins/Outputs you can allocate these outputs to pins. There are five available. If you are thinking of providing a variable speed signal as well that is your fifth output (using the standard LPT1 port)

I wired a small vero board circuit where the four outputs drive four relays, using a Darlington array chip. The Darlington array is an eight bit chip (on 18 pins) The inputs are 5 v positive, the output is 0v  at 1/2 amp per pin. A 0v (common) and +voltage (voltage of what you are driving) make up the other two pins. Outputs can be wired together to increase the current - more than adequate to drive relays (diodes are included in the chip).

I only use M3 and M4 at the moment, the coolant will have to wait and so I have two outputs spare that will still give output signals if I want to alllocate them.

I am sure you will be able to drive a relay with the capacity for your spindle drive if needed.

Not me driving the engine - I'm better looking.

Offline Hood

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Re: Spindle Control HowTo Help
« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2009, 01:55:01 PM »
As jim has said it will be easy enough if all you are wanting to do is switch the router on and off but not control the speed. To switch On/Off all you would need is a relay capable of carrying the current that the router requires or if quite a high current then you would need contactors. All you would do is have one of the outputs to switch the relay and then tell Mach which output you have used. M3 would then start the router and M5 turn it off.
Re: Spindle Control HowTo Help
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2009, 01:59:40 PM »
Thanks much to both of you.  I'll start researching my components...

Offline Greolt

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Re: Spindle Control HowTo Help
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2009, 04:08:52 PM »
That's a pretty decent looking machine you have built there Patrick.

Just to add to what has been said above.  Very easy to use a solid state relay to control your router. (on and off) 

These ones I have used often,  http://tinyurl.com/b9ha5x

At 5v control, they only take a few milliamps to turn them on, which means you can usually drive it straight from your output pin with no extra circuitry.  Makes for a very simple hook up. 

Some have reported variable speed routers that won't turn on with these but I have tried numerous routers and never had one that won't switch on reliably.


EDIT:  The link I posted may not work.  Search this ebay number,  350161837904
« Last Edit: February 05, 2009, 04:10:28 PM by Greolt »
Re: Spindle Control HowTo Help
« Reply #5 on: February 10, 2009, 07:11:59 PM »
no need to build anything.
this is a board with 4 relays that are controlled by 5v ttl. i have used many and are reasonably priceed at about 25.00

Offline Greolt

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Re: Spindle Control HowTo Help
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2009, 07:18:52 PM »
Those relays are only rated to 500w

Patrick's router is 1265w.

mach 3 Spindle Control configuration Help
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2009, 08:15:14 AM »
Hi everyone
I need some help to configure Mach 3 so that I can control the spindle with Mach3, I am using a PMDX 122 http://www.pmdx.com/PMDX-122/  and a PMDX 106 http://www.pmdx.com/PMDX-106/ spindle control card, VFD and spindle http://www.homeshopcnc.com/HFspindle2.html
When I power up the VFD , the spindle turns and I can set the various frequencies with no problem
 In Mach under config motor tuning “SPINDLE” do I need to set something there?
Do I do something at config “pulley selection”?

all help will greatly be appreciated