Author Topic: How to hook up Mach3 to a Shapeoko 3 CNC router table?  (Read 2234 times)

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Offline Chet

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How to hook up Mach3 to a Shapeoko 3 CNC router table?
« on: April 19, 2017, 11:11:20 PM »
I want to purchase the Shapeoko 3 to replace my homemade CNC router.
I'm already comfortable with my design software and the use of Mach 3.
I've seen YouTube videos of Shapeoko being used with Mach 3, but precious little 'user friendly' documentation/notes.
I understand that an external driver board is necessary for this to happen.
Would one of you successful Mach 3/Shapeoko users please share your setup, including the driver board?
Also the relevant driver settings to calibrate Mach 3 for the Shapeoko motor and pulley system?
It will be much appreciated!
Cordially,
Chet

Offline Chet

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Re: How to hook up Mach3 to a Shapeoko 3 CNC router table?
« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2017, 05:04:14 PM »
Please guys, if you are using Mach 3 with a Shapeoko 3, please let me know how you actually solved the interface challenge!
Many thanks!
Chet

Online Tweakie.CNC

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Re: How to hook up Mach3 to a Shapeoko 3 CNC router table?
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2017, 06:15:40 AM »
Hi Chet,

The Gecko G540 seems to be a popular solution http://www.geckodrive.com/geckodrive-step-motor-drives/g540.html

Tweakie.
Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.  Winston Churchill.

Offline Chet

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Re: How to hook up Mach3 to a Shapeoko 3 CNC router table?
« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2017, 03:24:08 PM »
Hi Tweakie!
As you suggested, the Gecko G540 does get a number of recommendations!
I'm just trying to find a drawing that shows the hook up to the Shapeoko 3 motors, power supply, and printer port.
AND with a brief explanation of the tuning/tweaking steps to get everything working together.
But thank you for  your response!

Online joeaverage

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Re: How to hook up Mach3 to a Shapeoko 3 CNC router table?
« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2017, 04:12:28 PM »
Hi chet,
you might find instructions/diagrams which detail what you need to do... but maybe not too. This is a DIY hobby after all.

You will need to solder DB9 plugs to each of the existing stepper motor cables. The power supply, assuming it is within the range of
a G540, is connected to two terminals on the 540. I imagine the Shapeoko spindle is turned on and off by a relay? In which case just
assign an output pin to spindle control and hook that pin screw terminal to a relay. Your limit/home switches likewise hook to the
screw terminals of the 540.

The 540 is very convenient in that a DB25 parallel port cable plugs straight into it and it contains 4 stepper motor drivers and doubles
as breakout board for the uncommitted IO pins.

Craig
My wife left with my best friend...
     and I miss him!

Offline Chet

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Re: How to hook up Mach3 to a Shapeoko 3 CNC router table?
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2017, 06:05:21 PM »
Thanks, Craig, for the input.
I'm just trying to avoid 're-inventing the wheel'...  ; - )
I don't mind embracing the learning curve, but that can be a sometimes expensive process if the wrong parts are ordered or hooked up incorrectly...


Offline RICH

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Re: How to hook up Mach3 to a Shapeoko 3 CNC router table?
« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2017, 06:37:53 AM »
Have you contacted  Shapeoko for the info you want. I they don't respond or provide the specifics then consider a different route!

RICH

Offline Chet

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Re: How to hook up Mach3 to a Shapeoko 3 CNC router table?
« Reply #7 on: May 01, 2017, 05:01:07 PM »
Hi Rich!
Sorry for the delay on my response!  I'd thought I'd responded!
However, the folks at Shapeoko are trying to be as helpful as they can, but they emphasize that they do not support equipment that is not their own.
I guess that is a reasonable approach, given that most Shapeoko owners are probably not familiar with Mach3.
But, all things considered, it would seem that a Mach3 operating option would be a great selling point!