Ethernet Motion Controllers
In the last thread I started there were several mentions of advising not to use a laptop for CNC use. After reading the Mach3 info, I understand why.
However, I have seen some Ethernet based motion controllers, such as the SS-02 unit offered by Homann, which supports Mach3. Is there any reason a unit like this could not be used in conjunction with a late model laptop and Mach3? It looks pretty slick and equivilates to three parallel ports when used with Mach3.
On a somewhat related note are there any forum recommendations for a newbie; equipment, pitfalls, applications, etc? I haven't found anything helpful on Yahoo Groups yet.
Dynomotion is a USB Dsp based Closed Loop controller that can either use Mach as the front end or its own.
Personally I don't know why you would want to run a CNC machine off a lap-top?
The SS-02 that Peter sells is just the ordinary smoothstepper with ethernet. He does not make them, just resells them. Some people have good luck with them, some don't like them. I have not tried one in years so I am not sure. There are still issue like feed holds and stuff that have not been resolved from what I hear.
A laptop is just not the best machine for a shop environment. They just are not as rugged. Spill something in the keyboard and $$$. A pc keyboard is like $5.
There are other external motion controllers as well like the DSPMC/IP which I would trust more: http://www.vitalsystem.com/web/motion/dspmc.php and the HiCON: http://www.vitalsystem.com/web/hicon/hicon.php
A friend of mine did buy a kflop and it seems to work well. It will work with it's own cnc software or through mach and is programmable with C for doing thing like rigid tapping and other stuff.
The ESS (what you are calling the SS-02) is all new from the ground up, the only thing that is the same is the footprint and Port 1 and Port 2 positions and pinout.
Originally Posted by macona
ESS works well and I have yet to hear of anyone with the noise issues that seemed to plague some with the USB SS. I have had an ESS on my lathe since they came out, probably 6 months ago and it has worked well for me with the exception of Step/Dir spindle control, it works ok but is a bit lumpy on override, the USB version is the same. Other spindle control methods do not seem to suffer that problem though.
Bad thing about a lot of the controllers mentioned is the 5v I/O, 24v is much more noise resistant and differential Step/Dir signals are also a good thing and both a must for me. At the moment I have to make my own boards to interface.
Seems eventually someone is thinking along the right lines and producing controllers with these features, including analogue in/outs as well. Also an analogue controller with +-10v commands for those with amps only capable of that command.
I am waiting for feedback from a friend who is at this time setting up the basic one (CSMIO/IP-M), if it looks good then I will likely be purchasing one of the bigger brothers (CSMIO/IP-S or CSMIO/IP-A).
The controllers I am talking about are from CS-Labs in Poland.
Regarding Laptop use, its not my preferred method but with any of the external controllers mentioned it should not be an issue and many do use them. I prefer to have my computers in the control cabinet and I use either a Via Pico motherboard (100mm x 72mm) or a micro ATX motherboard.
The Dynomotion with Kflop/Kanalog although USB not ethernet, will control ±10vdc analog drives, the TTL I/O can hook directly to Opto22 boards for 24vdc/120vac outputs.
Have heard a lot of people your side of the pond talking about Opto22 but when I have looked I have not liked the price very much. Possibly I am looking at the wrong things, do you have a link to pricing for 24v capable I/O?
Ebay is pretty much swamped with them, there is the older legacy type that have the indicator and fuse on the board, the later G2 series have the fuse and ind. on the module.
You can get either hard wired in or ribbon in, the I/O side is always screw terminal.
There are also a few other manuf that make identical style boards and modules.
eBay on your side of the pond may be, this side not so many, there are a few but cheapest here seems to be about $7 relay. I presume you get racks of some sort to fit them into but dont see anything listed here.
There was talk of the SS supporting Opto 22 via its expansion port but that hasnt happened as yet, whether it ever will I dont know.
I like the look of the CSMIO stuff though, all Din rail mountable, nice and compact and all on board I/O, just hoping it is as good as it looks on paper
edingcnc also has an Ethernet motion controller
in retrospect I should have bought it instead of usb
The eding one is really slow, 75 or 125khz.
Nothing wrong with USB vs Ethernet. Even basic USB2 is almost 5 times faster than 100MBit ethernet.