Sunday, March 4, 2012


Had some time today, and so I finished putting together the bed support and worked on tramming the bed and aligning all of the axis.  I still need to work on the Z, however I was able to get the X and Y square to the bed within about .03" which isn't too bad.  To do the alignment, I clamped a small bit of steel to my toolhead, and then attached a magnetic base dial indicator.  As I moved the X and Y position, the dial indicator swept the bed, and I was able to watch for height fluctuations.  Picture forthcoming.

I'm going to write some test G code to help ensure that the X and Y are perpendicular later this week.  it should be fairly easy to draw a couple of lines and measure with a square.  For Z, I'm going to use a square relative to the tool frame.  Since I know the bed is good, that should be a fairly simple solution.

I'm working on a better loading solution for the G code.  Since all TinyG needs is to have a streaming program that knows software flow control (Xon/Xoff), there's really no need to have a full-blown PC attached to the unit when milling.  Since I'd rather not burn the workspace space (and power) if I don't have to, I've been thinking about other options.  I've decided to take a Chumby One that I had lying around and use it as the serial link to the TinyG.  At the moment, I have minicom running on the Chumby, and I'm feeding it instructions manually.  My hope is to write a simple menu and status program to take advantage of the Chumby color LCD touchscreen, rotary encoder and button.

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