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[Newbie] G0704 Conversion - a few basic electronics questions

Discussion in 'CNC IN THE HOME SHOP' started by angelfj1, Feb 13, 2017.

  1. angelfj1

    angelfj1 United States Active User Active Member

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    Good morning folks! My apologies in advance because these are basic questions, but my project has been delayed for almost 3 years. I'm trying now to bring everything together.

    I'm using Hoss's plans. My steppers, drivers and BOB, are based on his recommendations, and consist of:
    steppers
    2 - KL23H2100-50-4B, 570 Oz-In (NEMA 23, for X & Y axes
    1 - KL34H295-43-8A,960 Oz-In (NEMA34), for Zaxis

    drivers
    3 - KL-5056D Digital Bipolar Stepper Motor Driver

    BOB
    C11 – Multifunction CNC Breakout Board

    Originally I had intended to use an old pc and add a parallel port. That pc is now gone and the one I now want to use has no parallel. So, rather than add a parallel port, I'm considering a device called the UC100 USB motion controller. This wasn't available when I started the project. I have a few questions.
    Can I use the same BOB?
    Does the UC100 plug into the DB25 plug on the BOB?
    The supplier lists stand alone software for use with the UC100. Do I need this or can I
    use Mach3, which I already have.
    Is the UC100 as reliable or better than the BOB used in the parallel port mode?
    Is the UC100 any different than other USB to Parallel Port converters?

    Thank you in advance for your help.

    Best regards, Frank:)
     
  2. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    See my comments above in red. I can't comment on your last two questions because I have no experience running Mach with a parallel port. Keep asking questions and we will do our best to answer them. And please post pictures. We want to see what you are doing.

    Tom S.
     
  3. angelfj1

    angelfj1 United States Active User Active Member

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    Thanks Tom. I appreciate your comments. Boy, I'm really confused now. After doing a bit more research, it appears that the UC100 was designed for parallel port type Break Out Boards but for input from pc's and laptops with USB only. The spec sheet indicates it is compatible with Mach3. I have attached a photo of the UC100 and my BOB and my understanding of the connections.

    Best regards, Frank UC100 CONNECTIONS.jpg
     
  4. jbolt

    jbolt United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Your photo above is correct. The UC100 is a motion controller that connects to a DB25 parallel port connector on a BoB and outputs via USB to the PC.

    I ran the UC100 for a while on my mill & router and tired of the USB disconnection faults. I have since moved on to an Ethernet Smooth Stepper, PMDX-126 BoB and PMDX-107 spindle controller on both machines. Very reliable combo with Mach3. I run windows 10 & Mach3 on both cnc machines with no issues.
     
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  5. DAT510

    DAT510 United States H-M Supporter - Premium Content H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Hi Frank,
    I use a UC100 on my Syil X3 cnc. I used to use a parallel port on my PC. The UC100 is much better. Took a lot of the load of the PC and buffers the commands so I've had a lot fewer issues.

    I'm using Mach3 and the factory Syil BOB. When installing the UC100 I had to add Windows Drivers and A Mach3 plug-in. Now when I start Mach3 I get the option to use the UC100 or old parallel port.

    Since you already have the BOB, the UC100 maybe a more cost effective alternative to buying a new BOB.

    Chris
     
  6. rdean

    rdean United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I agree on the Ethernet Smooth Stepper as being the way to go and you don't need a new BOB yours will work fine.
    Have fun

    Ray
     
  7. angelfj1

    angelfj1 United States Active User Active Member

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    Jay, Chris, many thanks for your advice. Last night I noticed that the motherboard of the computer I'm using actually has an LPT header. See attached. So, at least for now, I plan to get a cable with a 26 pin IDC connector at one end and a DB25 at the other, and connect my BOB for parallel operation. If performance is poor, I can always go to the UC100 - USB mode.

    Best regards, Frank LPT.jpg
     
  8. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I reread my responses and I mis-spoke when I said you need a BoB with a USB port. I should have said a BoB with a USB port is another way to power your BoB. Sorry for the confusion.

    Tom S.
     

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