I can't make any guarantees about where the XMOS is going. Right now it is doing more than I expected, so I am happy. It is actually very simple to get working (no soldering at all, but about 20 solderless jumpers). I plan to at least get a board made to make it all one integrated piece that allows engraving and pass through Mach3/EMC cutting. The schematic is basically done. I want to have some friends at XMOS look it over.
By pass through, I mean it will sit on the parallel port between the PC and CNC machine. In one mode the XMOS takes control and the other mode it just lets the signals go through from the PC to the CNC. The XMOS will still see all the signals so there will be some cool tricks it could play.
I plan to keep it open source and make it so that it could be general purpose CNC board like a simpler version of a smoothstepper, if someone wanted to take it there. The part cost is probably only about $20-30, so it will be cheap.
If you are interested in building a laser, I suggest going for it. Initially set it up as a cutter via Mach or EMC. That will take you a few months. Then, either buy a commercial board like lasersafe1 or maybe the XMOS will be what you want.
I actually don't have a real use for a laser engraver. I am in this just for the fun of it. I would much rather build every piece I possibly can than buy "off the shelf". Even if means it ends up costing me more and the results are less than perfect. I might even make my own tube soon. It will cost me a lot, but it will be cool.
lasersafe1 wrote:I've never heard of Misumi. Where do you buy from?
pixpop wrote:--> Switch to the finer pitch (.08") belt to get me to 1000 steps/inch.
I'm confused by this. Why does the belt pitch matter? Isn't it just the pulley diameter that determines the resolution?
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