2012 Marchant Dice CNC bought without the controller

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16 Jan 2019 10:57 #124286 by olivierEbeniste44
Hello,
Two weeks ago I bought on leboncoin (french version of craigslist) a rack and pinion 4' by 4' CNC but the seller wanted to keep for himself the controller and the spindle. He got it from Marchant Dice, a now closed british company, and had no documentation whatsoever except for the bills from 2012.

I have very few knowledge / experience in electronics, but I have been reading for quite a while about it and how to get a new controller. Can you help me translate the original controller bill and find the hardware I need?

- CNC HardWare

Z axis (ballscrew) : 1 NEMA 23 stepper, label says 3,1 Nm
X axis (rack an pinion) : 1 NEMA 34 stepper, label says 5,5A
Y axis (rack an pinion) : 2 NEMA 34 steppers, No label
1 estop button
3 Proximity Limit Switch

My future spindle is either a 2,2KW VFD from China , or a 1050-FME-P fromAMB if the first one is too heavy.

- Original controller bill for a 4 Axis Home/Light Industrial Controller Kit :

x4pcs: 4.3A stepper driver
x1pce: 5 axis interface / spindle control board
x4pcs: Ribbon cables / connection lines
x1pce: Printer port connector: LPT1
x1pce: Power supply CBD-450T-110/220-42
x1pce: Power distribution board

(£298.00)

here are blurry photos of the original controller

I will have a pc running linux dedicated to the cnc, but would like to be able to sometimes use my ubuntu laptop directly to control the machine, so I plan on purchasing a 7i96 mesa ethernet card. That card is a break out board and an ethernet port, right?
The bill says 4.3A stepper drivers but one of the drivers says it is 5,5 A i assume it is the max current and that 4,3 amps in is OK.

- Future controller :
x4pcs: 4.3A stepper driver --> this fr.banggood.com/Updated-Version-of-TB660...rch&cur_warehouse=CN ?
x1pce: 5 axis interface / spindle control board --> 7i96 mesa ethernet card
x4pcs: Ribbon cables / connection lines --> I don't know what kind, does it come with the driver?
x1pce: Printer port connector: LPT1 --> 7i96 mesa ethernet card
x1pce: Power supply CBD-450T-110/220-42 --> Internet does not know this how do I estimate this?
x1pce: Power distribution board --> ?
- a metal box?
- anything else, a fan for example ?

Thank you very much for any help on this topic !!

Olivier
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17 Jan 2019 13:24 - 17 Jan 2019 13:25 #124346 by andypugh

olivierEbeniste44 wrote: He got it from Marchant Dice, a now closed british company

This company is at the same address: www.bionicasystems.com/
And sells much the same stuff, but to be honest, it might be best to ignore them.

I will have a pc running linux dedicated to the cnc, but would like to be able to sometimes use my ubuntu laptop directly to control the machine,

I think that adding this feature will just make things more difficult. It is likely to be much simpler to connect to the dedicated controller with SSH and X-windows if you want to run the machine from the laptop. (I quite often ssh in to my CNC machines in the garage from the Mac in my living room, especially when the weather is cold)

x4pcs: 4.3A stepper driver

Consider using Amazon for slightly better customer service and faster delivery:
www.amazon.fr/TopDirect-TB6600-Controlle...mante/dp/B0711J1K66/

x1pce: Power supply CBD-450T-110/220-42 --> Internet does not know this how do I estimate this?


Simplistically you could just use 4 x 4.3A and size the supply that way. With a servo drive you could use a smaller supply as it is unusual for all motors to take max current at the same time. However stepper motors take full current all the time, even when stopped, but at a lower voltage. (probably about 5V) so the power supply needs to be at least 100W and no more than 750W.
www.ebay.co.uk/itm/232991720903 seems t indicate that there isn't much difference in price between a 360W and a 500W one, so I would suggest the 36V 500W. (It's best not to run the stepper drivers at the absolute maximum voltage, so I would get a 36V and adjust it up)
Last edit: 17 Jan 2019 13:25 by andypugh.

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17 Jan 2019 15:33 - 17 Jan 2019 15:34 #124354 by olivierEbeniste44
Hello ,

Thank you for the link, I thought I was alone in the world and now I know I have a family ! Could you elaborate a bit on what you meant? Are they the Atreides or what, I need to know :0).
The machine I have seems to be fine.

This company is at the same address: www.bionicasystems.com/
And sells much the same stuff, but to be honest, it might be best to ignore them.


I had not thought of that, yes it is typically the usage I would have, my shop is not isolated. So, now I wonder if there is a interest for me in getting a mesa card and building my own controller around it instead of a buying a ready made parallel port control box...

I think that adding this feature will just make things more difficult. It is likely to be much simpler to connect to the dedicated controller with SSH and X-windows if you want to run the machine from the laptop. (I quite often ssh in to my CNC machines in the garage from the Mac in my living room, especially when the weather is cold)


Yes, thank you it is better.

Consider using Amazon for slightly better customer service and faster delivery:
www.amazon.fr/TopDirect-TB6600-Controlle...mante/dp/B0711J1K66/


Thank you very much for your last explanation, it is crystal clear now.

I hope I am not Agamemnon, I always thought I was pore of an Odysseus type
Cheers,

Olivier
Last edit: 17 Jan 2019 15:34 by olivierEbeniste44.

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18 Jan 2019 15:55 #124402 by andypugh

olivierEbeniste44 wrote: I had not thought of that, yes it is typically the usage I would have, my shop is not isolated. So, now I wonder if there is a interest for me in getting a mesa card and building my own controller around it instead of a buying a ready made parallel port control box...


I would suggest a Mini-ITX motherboard with a parallel port and a cheap break-out-board as a starting point.
You might want to move to a Mesa (or Pico, Or General Mechatronics) solution later, but at the moment I would suggest keeping things cheap and simple until you have the machine working and know what your requirements are.
x86 motherbard and parallel port is a well-trodden path and is likely to be the fastest way to get up and running.

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