With most of the mechanical assembly complete. It’s time to start wiring things up.
All the wires run to the back of corner of the cabinet where the electronics will be housed. I modified a PVC outdoor outlet cover with cutouts and added a foam gasket for the wiring. This will help keep the dust out. The doors are also gasketed and the air intake vent is fitted with a dust filter.
The control computer is a recycled PC running XP and Mach-3. I chose this older PC because it is ‘fast enough’ and has a native parallel port.
The motor controller modules are housed in a PC tower-case. The ATX power supply provides power for the logic circuits and fans. A separate 48v power supply provides power for the motors themselves. ‘BOB’ the parallel port breakout board connects the motor controllers to the control computer via a parallel port.
Mach-3 control software is installed on the control computer. The monitor is mounted on an arm near the front corner of the rails for good visibility.
Next 3D Thursday: We’ll install the spindle and power it up!
Make a robot friend with Adafruit’s CRICKIT – A Creative Robotics & Interactive Construction Kit. It’s an add-on to our popular Circuit Playground Express, FEATHER and other platforms to make and program robots with CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. Start controlling motors, servos, solenoids. You also get signal pins, capacitive touch sensors, a NeoPixel driver and amplified speaker output. It complements & extends your boards so you can still use all the goodies on the microcontroller, now you have a robotics playground as well.