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Thread: My new CNC machine -- Zenbot

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    My new CNC machine -- Zenbot

    Hello :-)

    I just received my new CNC, it's a Zenbot Mini CNC Router. Since on the official site there not many information about the internals, I decided to take some pictures so others can evaluate before buy. (I don't know if this is the correct forum place for this post - I will make PCB with this CNC).


    (Sorry for the noisy pictures, I just hadn't more room light to take a better ones).




    There structure of the machine looks a black metal, but is a black plastic, however machine looks very robust, I am very happy with it.

    Now the box that controls the stepper motors. I had to see what was inside ;-) - it's a board with name "3 Axis Stepper Motor Driver" from http://www.easy-cnc.com.




    Am I happy with the seller and the product? -- yes, I am. I had to contact him by phone and e-mail, I had got every time help I was hopping.

    The only thing I don't like, is the fact the official web site provide little technical information about the machine, I was hopping for information on how to get the machine working with EMC2 on Linux! Seller sent me the setup files for EMC2 but I had to ask for it by e-mail, before decided to buy the machine.

    EMC2 and Open Source empower hackers as me, the ones who wants to keep learning and make new things. For example, I will hack this Zenbot CNC and EMC2 for making a 3D printer for plastic, the "Repstrap". Video:

    "http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NFYxiyZyndA"]YouTube - EMC RepStrap

    The next hacks to Zenbot CNC
    1. This CNC don't have axis limit switches. The manual of board for stepper motors says: "Individual enable/disable via hardware, using optocoupler input terminal (it can be used as axis limit switch), per axis". So, next hack will be putting that limit switches.

    2. The board manual also says: "Full access to all unused DB25 port pins via terminal block". I will have to discover what pins are available, in the hope to use them (if any) for control the plastic extruder for the 3D printer :-)

    Testing gcode files

    I did convert the KiCAD exported gerber files to gcode using the program pcb2gcode. Here are two pictures of EMC2 running with Zenbot CNC:




    Similar Threads:
    Last edited by casainho; 10-20-2009 at 05:23 PM.


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    Registered Propaganda's Avatar
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    Hi

    Thank you for the pictures and the review it really helps in making the decision to purchase or not.

    Did you get a chance to make a few parts with it? How did they come out? Can you tell me how many amperage the included PSU is?

    Thx

    -P



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    Quote Originally Posted by Propaganda View Post
    Hi

    Thank you for the pictures and the review it really helps in making the decision to purchase or not.

    Did you get a chance to make a few parts with it?
    Well, I just made one yet and I hope to make another tomorrow - it's a simple PCB to hold an SDCard. Here the only image I have:


    Quote Originally Posted by Propaganda View Post
    How did they come out? Can you tell me how many amperage the included PSU is?
    I don't remember and can't see it now, but is like a standard portable computer PSU.

    My objective with this CNC is to make mainly PCB and a 3D printer EMCRepStrap device.

    If you need a CNC for lower quality to make an EMCRepStrap device, you can just use this one, for $225.

    I must say that I am very happy with the seller communication and the machine precision. That PCB I milled were with http://www.wolfgangengineering.com/ spindle, a must have for PCB work ;-)

    As for software tools, I am in love with EMC2, KiCAD, pcb2gcode and RepRap hardware/firmware/software tools ;-)



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    Registered Jesse B's Avatar
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    That's a nice looking machine, looking forward to seeing some more work done by it!



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    Quote Originally Posted by Propaganda View Post
    Hi

    Thank you for the pictures and the review it really helps in making the decision to purchase or not.

    Did you get a chance to make a few parts with it? How did they come out? Can you tell me how many amperage the included PSU is?
    PSU outputs 19V and 6.3A maximum.

    In this months, I didn't made any other PCB... however I am using it as a 3D printer - EMCRepStrap. See here my project page with pictures of it.









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    Registered Jesse B's Avatar
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    That's awesome! Nicely done.



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    That is verry cool! Fantastic work and thanks for showing us the concept, I had not seen that before. I have a couple of questions does it smell and how strong is the finished product?



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    Quote Originally Posted by Drools View Post
    That is verry cool! Fantastic work and thanks for showing us the concept, I had not seen that before. I have a couple of questions does it smell and how strong is the finished product?
    Go to main RepRap project site where you have all the details and foruns with expert people ready to help you.



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    I just received my Zenbot 1216. Your photos and review helped in my decision. Thanks for posting those.

    Quote Originally Posted by casainho View Post
    This CNC don't have axis limit switches. The manual of board for stepper motors says: "Individual enable/disable via hardware, using optocoupler input terminal (it can be used as axis limit switch), per axis". So, next hack will be putting that limit switches.
    Did you add in the limit switches? If so, did you run into any issues? I was looking at adding those in as well as an E-Stop. I guess that I am paranoid that I will destroy my first CNC machine while learning the ropes.



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    Quote Originally Posted by gpraceman View Post
    Did you add in the limit switches? If so, did you run into any issues? I was looking at adding those in as well as an E-Stop. I guess that I am paranoid that I will destroy my first CNC machine while learning the ropes.
    No I didn't. Because soon I saw that stepper motors are not very strong, they will miss steps if go to the end of any axis.



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    Quote Originally Posted by casainho View Post
    No I didn't. Because soon I saw that stepper motors are not very strong, they will miss steps if go to the end of any axis.
    I was also worried about it chewing up the teeth on the drive belt, not just slamming into the hard stops. Replacing the belts doesn't look that easy to do.

    Still happy with your machine?



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    Quote Originally Posted by gpraceman View Post
    I was also worried about it chewing up the teeth on the drive belt, not just slamming into the hard stops. Replacing the belts doesn't look that easy to do.

    Still happy with your machine?
    Yes, I am happy although I am not using it right now. I am instead try to make working a 3D Printer RepRap Mendel, which I printed all the pieces for, on Zenbot.

    I hope to use zenbot again in 1 month or less, but for milling PCB. I think is a waste for 3D printing as a cheap RepRap Mendel can do it and be replaced easily :-)





    More pictures here.

    Last edited by casainho; 06-13-2010 at 07:03 PM.


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