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Author Topic: How to add a 3d printer to cnc machine?  (Read 1175 times)

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How to add a 3d printer to cnc machine?
« on: March 15, 2018, 03:02:52 PM »
I'm trying to convert my 4x8 cnc machine to a 3d printer setup. My machine uses a Leadshine MX4660 driver(http://www.leadshine.com/UploadFile/Down/MX4660hm_V1.1.pdf) that is capable of controlling a 5th axis. I'll be using it with this hotend combo(https://www.filastruder.com/collections/titan-aero/products/e3d-titan-extruder-aero).

My issue is that I don't know what pins the hotend motor is being controlled with on the DB25 cable. How do I configure this so that Mach3 can see it? Thanks

Offline TPS

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Re: How to add a 3d printer to cnc machine?
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2018, 03:59:10 PM »
My issue is that I don't know what pins the hotend motor is being controlled with on the DB25 cable. How do I configure this so that Mach3 can see it? Thanks


what do you mean with "what pins the hotend motor is being controlled with on the DB25 cable".

the Motor itselv (witch is not included in yout hotend link) need's to be connected as a axis to MX4660hm.
anything is possible, just try it.
if you find some mistakes, in my bad bavarian english,they are yours.
Re: How to add a 3d printer to cnc machine?
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2018, 05:43:46 PM »
Mason Dixon;

I just GLANCED at the Leadshine manual you linked.  It looks like you would hook up the extruder stepper to "A STEP" and "A DIRECTION" (the 4th axis).  This is Figure 13 on Page 14.  These are connected to pins 8 (Step) and 9 (Direction) on the DB25 connector.  Of course make sure the other axes (X, Y, Z) are working first, that should help troubleshooting.

If you need assistance, Google "mach3 for 3d printing" there are some good articles/ etc. out there.

You will also need to control hotend heater and possibly a bed heater, too.

Good luck & let us know how it goes.  4x8 is one BIG 3D Printer!!
Re: How to add a 3d printer to cnc machine?
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2018, 10:58:34 AM »
Thanks, forgot to add my Y axis is controlled with 2 motors, so Y axis is the 3rd axis and A axis being the 4th. I'd like to have 3d printhead be on the B axis in Mach3.

I've got my 5th axis printhead wired up per the diagram on pg. 20 here:


Here is the pin out diagram for the DB25 on pg. 21:


How do I config Mach3 to control the 5th axis printhead on the B-axis with the above info?


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Re: How to add a 3d printer to cnc machine?
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2018, 11:20:09 AM »
i think you have to add a second PP, because you are out of Outputs on PP1.
and you have used Input1 + 2 where the 5th axis is linked through internaly
for what ever reason.
anything is possible, just try it.
if you find some mistakes, in my bad bavarian english,they are yours.
Re: How to add a 3d printer to cnc machine?
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2018, 11:48:22 AM »
Thanks, so looks like I need to order a breakout board and a dual PP card....I'll give this a shot unless there is a better one for Mach3  https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00006B8C6/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?smid=ASF0S1GFIHF5V&psc=1
Re: How to add a 3d printer to cnc machine?
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2018, 12:20:34 PM »
Mason Dixon;
It has been a long time since I hooked up a Mach3 system parallel port, but I believe you can use some of the PP's control signal lines as IO...

From page 16 of the manual in your first post: "Output1 and Output2 are connected to Pin 17, 1 of the DB25 connector respectively,".  These pins are "/SELECT" and "/STROBE" signals, and are really control outputs for the DB25 parallel port.

You can check this with a volt meter...

For those outputs, all the MX unit supplies is opto-isolation and a 1k Ohm resistor per Figures 16 on page 17.  So you will have to supply "+V" and a Stepper Driver per the "Expanding the 5th axis" notes on Figure 21 bottom left corner box.

You will likely still need an external temperature controller for the hot end...

Again, I didn't read the whole MX document...

Good luck.

You will also need an output to tell the temp controller when to start controlling the temp, and likely an input to tell M3 the hotend is up to temp...

A few links you are likely aware of...

http://www.instructables.com/id/CNC-to-3D-Printer-Conversion/
http://www.jonshobbies.com/convert-a-cnc-router-to-a-3d-printer.html



Re: How to add a 3d printer to cnc machine?
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2018, 02:08:45 PM »
Thanks MadDogSTrack, I have a digital PID temp controller that holds the temp fairly steady on the hotend.

I've got a single axis driver that I have wired up with the 1k Ohm resistor for the 5th axis 3d printhead motor. It is getting power. I'm just unsure of how to set ports and pins so that Mach3 recognizes it.

How do I config this window?


Do I need to change anything with the Input Signals and Output Signals windows?