Seasons Greetings, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all!
I managed to get some time in on the milling machine controller this weekend and have the photographic evidence to prove it!
Here's the Hobby CNC controller mounted in the 5 1/4" cage of the computer case I'm adapting. I've got some rack-mount servers that I've retired from my hosting company that turned out to be perfect for this application: the case is large enough to fit all the controller's elements inside, as well as the computer components too. I'm mounting the CNC controller in the area that would normally house hard drives/cdroms, etc.
This is the front of the drive bay, with a panel that I made for the controller including the 24v fan, a fuse and an on/off switch. The controller will be on a separate 110v line from the computer.
Here I'm laying out the various cables etc. The 24v, 10A transformer for the CNC controller is already mounted in the case, in another cage that the controller is currently sitting on.
Here's a shot of the back of the computer. I made a panel that joins two of the pci openings into one for the stepper motor cables to pass through. You can see the AC power cord connector that I've mounted above and a bit to the left for the CNC controller's transformer. The computer will be powered by the regular computer power supply.
More coming soon as I've got a ton of projects stacking up and I need this machine up and running!
So ... I've been concentrating on building a custom case for the computer that will be controlling the milling machine.
I decided that I'd use an old tower computer case that was slated for the dump and I'd embed the LCD monitor in the side of the case.
I have a Samsung 15" LCD monitor and bought a touch-screen conversion kit off ebay. The touch-screen kit consists of a thin glass overlay with touch-sensitive material and a USB interface, allowing me to convert this standard LCD monitor. The Mach3 software that controls the milling machine was designed to work as a touch-screen application, so the end results should be quite professional.
On another note, I got my hands on a plasma cutter. Wow! While they're spendy, they sure are nice to have!
This is a straight test cut in some 22 gage sheet metal I had lying around.
I've removed the guts of the Samsung monitor and over-layed the touch-screen kit and am testing it with my laptop.
This is the side cover of the computer case that I'll be using to embed the monitor in.
A few minutes later with the plasma cutter ...
I've constructed a metal frame out of 1" x 1/8" flat steel that the monitor will mount to. This will also serve to minimize flex in the side of the computer case; I'll be spot-welding the computer case to the metal frame.