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  1. #1
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    Centroid Acorn experiences?

    I’m about to retrofit a small denford mill and a lathe, I have a Uccnc board I could use in the mill but I like the idea of having the same control in both, and Uccnc isn’t really ready for turn. The acorn kind of looks perfect, apart from its low I/O count (both machines have atcs)

    But I can’t find many reviews of the acorn online by people who have actually fitted one.

    Anyone here with good/bad experiences?

  2. #2
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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    Quote Originally Posted by steve_p View Post
    I’m about to retrofit a small denford mill and a lathe, I have a Uccnc board I could use in the mill but I like the idea of having the same control in both, and Uccnc isn’t really ready for turn. The acorn kind of looks perfect, apart from its low I/O count (both machines have atcs)

    But I can’t find many reviews of the acorn online by people who have actually fitted one.

    Anyone here with good/bad experiences?
    Look on YouTube there are lots that are using Acorn, this is one that is using it on mills and lathe he has many videos

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5sVZ3-m_r7s
    Mactec54

  3. #3
    Community Moderator ger21's Avatar
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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    You might also want to read through Acorn's own support forum.
    Gerry

    UCCNC 2017 Screenset
    http://www.thecncwoodworker.com/2017.html

    Mach3 2010 Screenset
    http://www.thecncwoodworker.com/2010.html

    JointCAM - CNC Dovetails & Box Joints
    http://www.g-forcecnc.com/jointcam.html

    (Note: The opinions expressed in this post are my own and are not necessarily those of CNCzone and its management)

  4. #4
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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    I think the basic Acorn software does not do threading. Not much good for a lathe.

  5. #5
    Community Moderator ger21's Avatar
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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    I think the vast majority of Acorn users pay the ~$100 for the software upgrade, to gain access to a lot more functionality.
    Gerry

    UCCNC 2017 Screenset
    http://www.thecncwoodworker.com/2017.html

    Mach3 2010 Screenset
    http://www.thecncwoodworker.com/2010.html

    JointCAM - CNC Dovetails & Box Joints
    http://www.g-forcecnc.com/jointcam.html

    (Note: The opinions expressed in this post are my own and are not necessarily those of CNCzone and its management)

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by steve_p View Post
    I’m about to retrofit a small denford mill and a lathe, I have a Uccnc board I could use in the mill but I like the idea of having the same control in both, and Uccnc isn’t really ready for turn. The acorn kind of looks perfect, apart from its low I/O count (both machines have atcs)

    But I can’t find many reviews of the acorn online by people who have actually fitted one.

    Anyone here with good/bad experiences?
    I'm a actual user and I looked at everything prior to going with Centroid Acorn. I have zero complaints and it was very easy to get up and running and I had zero CNC experience. Do yourself a favor and sign up for their forum as it's the place to have all your questions answered. I'm not using it for a lathe I have a router. I am however looking to build a bench top CNC retrofit lathe and will be using a Acorn for that machine as well. There's a lot of guys using Acorn for their lathes and I haven't seen anything but happy customers. Here's a video of my machine running on Centroid.

    https://youtu.be/HO7MdLyIyrw

    Dan

  7. #7

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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    I too am an actual user of the Rev 4 Acorn board. I can second everything Ntl stated. I recently (within the last month) converted a Chinese Blue Elephant 6090 CNC router I bought used on Craigslist over to the Acorn board and I'm completely satisfied with their hardware and software. The support on their forum is second to none and there are tons of videos and support documents for the Acorn on their site. The ease of setup is childsplay. Why I ever considered Mach3 or UCCNC is beyond me. This is truly a "prosumer" system and it's constantly being worked on and improved, if that's even possible. Very soon you'll be able to customize the screen layout and buttons with an all new "router" version that's coming. For $299 and FREE shipping you get an ethernet control board, a 8 position relay board, dual power supply (5 & 24 volts) and a shielded ethernet cable to control your entire system. Oh and their basic control software also. No mix and match controller with BOB's to get your system working. Forget all the other hardware out there and BUY the Acorn.

  8. #8
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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    I just completed an upgrade to my DynaCNC 4'x8' router table. I couldn't be happier. I think the Centroid Acorn is hands down the best value in DIY CNC. I built a new control box around the Acorn 4 board and with the Video's, schematics and documentation I had no issues getting my existing GeckoDrive 203V drivers, my HY VFD and Spindle working with my machine. Not one issue. Everything just works. I looked at Uccnc, Masso and all the different combinations I could do with Mach 4 and picked the Centroid Acorn in the end. The fact that it was an all in one solution, that was backed by a company that builds OEM controls, not just DIY controls made it an unbelievable deal at $299 for the motion control board with built in break out board, 8 relay board, power supply and the software! I had originally planned to upgrade my machine from Mach3 to Mach4 and use Smooth Stepper along with PMDX boards to try to get as close to a "professional" solution as possible but in the end, that would have cost me 3 times what I paid for the Acorn. I saved so much money I bought a touch screen monitor, the wireless pendant (worth every penny!) and upgraded to the Mill Pro software. The Acron V4 board required zero special configuration, worked out of the box. Just had to enter the motor turning information that I got out of Mach 3, told it what inputs I was using for my switches and it just works.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by liefer View Post
    I think the basic Acorn software does not do threading. Not much good for a lathe.
    Incorrect. Centroid CNC Acorn has a built in encoder port for a real encoder. Acorn with the Pro license can do threading, Constant Surface Speed and rigid tapping on a lathe, and rigid tapping on a mill.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve_p View Post
    I’m about to retrofit a small denford mill and a lathe, I have a Uccnc board I could use in the mill but I like the idea of having the same control in both, and Uccnc isn’t really ready for turn. The acorn kind of looks perfect, apart from its low I/O count (both machines have atcs)

    But I can’t find many reviews of the acorn online by people who have actually fitted one.

    Anyone here with good/bad experiences?
    Finishing up refitting two Denford Orac lathes. One with a turret. Ill do a video overview on it once complete. Centroid and I fleshed out the PLC to get the turret working with its 3 bit gray logic encoder and using the original turret motor. Watch my YouTube channel martyscncgarage for the upcoming video.

  11. #11
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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    I converted a Novakon mill to an acorn this summer. I have not used it a lot but from what testing I have done so far it has run flawlessly. I switched over from mach 3. I think the conversion was worth the money.

  12. #12
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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    Hmmm I went to amazon Us and it was $299.00 + $56.00 Shipping, On the Canadian site it was $664.00 shipping included! So WTF! Lets see $355.00 Us x the exchange = $461.50 Canadian, $664.00 Canadian = $510.76 Us at $1.30 exchange!
    So always shop around!

  13. #13

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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    I read up a lot on Acorn vs mach3 vs UCCNC etc. Feedback with Acorn was that it just worked...period. No caveats, not excuses, no extra drivers, no special circumstances, no ... "why is it doing that" type of thing I see with mach3 and other boards. Also, I just did not want to mess with older parallel port BS computer interfaces. I was not going to install windows 7.

    I then bought the Avid pro mill machine kit and hooked it up with Acorn. **** just worked and has never missed a beat. Support has been good as well. I enjoy a modern computer as well.


  14. #14
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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    Quote Originally Posted by blitzer View Post
    I read up a lot on Acorn vs mach3 vs UCCNC etc. Feedback with Acorn was that it just worked...period. No caveats, not excuses, no extra drivers, no special circumstances, no ... "why is it doing that" type of thing I see with mach3 and other boards. Also, I just did not want to mess with older parallel port BS computer interfaces. I was not going to install windows 7.

    I then bought the Avid pro mill machine kit and hooked it up with Acorn. **** just worked and has never missed a beat. Support has been good as well. I enjoy a modern computer as well.
    Those what you read mostly were written by Centroid employees and contractors.
    You have never used mach3 and uccnc is clear from your writing. Both softwares have much more features than the Acorn and does not need any special things like you think.
    For example I have an AXBB-E which is a similar board as the Acorn, it has the motion controller and also the breakout board functionality. The software side is also simple to set up and if you are an advanced user then you have much more customisation possiblities with mach3 and the uccnc.

  15. #15
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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    Quote Originally Posted by OlfCNC View Post
    Those what you read mostly were written by Centroid employees and contractors..
    Again you don't know what you are talking about the are no Centroid employees or contractors in this thread

    Its the centroid software that make it the best high end control, even at the Acorn level, the hardware is nothing special but the software is way ahead of everyone else
    Mactec54

  16. #16
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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    Quote Originally Posted by mactec54 View Post
    Again you don't know what you are talking about the are no Centroid employees or contractors in this thread

    Its the centroid software that make it the best high end control, even at the Acorn level, the hardware is nothing special but the software is way ahead of everyone else
    Sure Centroid employes and contractors making those threads, CNCKeith, NTL, Gary Campbell and their friends.

    Talking about software: What I see is a non-customisable DOS looking UI of the Acorn which looks like it is from the late 80's. While all the other options UIs, Mach3/4, UCCNC, LinuxCNC are customisable and flexible.
    Talking about hardware: It is nothing special, a Beagleboard microcomputer with some breakoutboard function.

  17. #17
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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    Quote Originally Posted by OlfCNC View Post
    Sure Centroid employes and contractors making those threads, CNCKeith, NTL, Gary Campbell and their friends.

    Talking about software: What I see is a non-customisable DOS looking UI of the Acorn which looks like it is from the late 80's. While all the other options UIs, Mach3/4, UCCNC, LinuxCNC are customisable and flexible.
    Talking about hardware: It is nothing special, a Beagleboard microcomputer with some breakoutboard function.
    I switched from Mach 3 to the acorn. I do agree with you that Mach 3 has more features and is more customizable. However the acorn actually works, So far it does what it is told with no weird stuff happening. I could never trust mach 3 and it did some weird things once in a while. I think the people who are happy with mach 3 made a lucky choice of hardware that was compatible with mach 3. I was not so fortunate and had some odd things happen I could not explain. Some of the oddness happened on a random part of a multi part run. It was executing the same code that worked fine on the previous parts but would suddenly scrap a part. the next part that went though was fine.

  18. #18
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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    Quote Originally Posted by OlfCNC View Post
    Sure Centroid employes and contractors making those threads, CNCKeith, NTL, Gary Campbell and their friends.

    Talking about software: What I see is a non-customisable DOS looking UI of the Acorn which looks like it is from the late 80's. While all the other options UIs, Mach3/4, UCCNC, LinuxCNC are customisable and flexible.
    Talking about hardware: It is nothing special, a Beagleboard microcomputer with some breakoutboard function.
    NTL is a hobby guy just like you, the other names you mention have not posed in this thread (wedge)

    Can you customize any high end control, ( N0 ) and what is the need, all hobby guys need is a control that works, it has everything that is needed for any 4 axes CNC machine operation
    Mactec54

  19. #19
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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    Quote Originally Posted by OlfCNC View Post
    Sure Centroid employes and contractors making those threads, CNCKeith, NTL, Gary Campbell and their friends.

    Talking about software: What I see is a non-customisable DOS looking UI of the Acorn which looks like it is from the late 80's. While all the other options UIs, Mach3/4, UCCNC, LinuxCNC are customisable and flexible.
    Talking about hardware: It is nothing special, a Beagleboard microcomputer with some breakoutboard function.
    Olfcnc…
    I also will have to call you out a bit. I am not a Centroid contractor. I am an independent system builder. Since 2015 I have built systems using UCCNC, ShopBot, WinCNC and Centroid Acorn controllers and have "been approved" in one form or another by the mfgr. I build what customers desire, I have no need to push any brand of controller, unless one has a feature that the others may not. Fact is, that I actually will make a few dollars less on an Acorn system than one running UCCNC simply because the controller costs less.

    End of 2017 I stopped using SB controllers, due to comm errors and the fact I could use UCCNC to replace it at a lower cost to my customers. Even tho UCCNC was not as smooth or adjustable as WinCNC, it cost a lot less, so I sell more systems. I didn't drop UCCNC until after I had proven to my self that Centroid Acorn far outperformed UCCNC. It offers me the adjustability to fine tune for smooth motion, equal to that which is offered by WinCNC at a much lower cost.

    You seem to make a number of unqualified comparative analyses between Acorn and UCCNC, hardware and software. Have you actually ever purchased and used one? I have. I personally would not judge a controller that I haven't installed on at least a half dozen machines. Routers, mills, lathes and numerous specialty machines.

    I can honestly say that after building at least a half dozen UCCNC systems and testing them, reporting bugs, getting assistance from advanced US users and from developer support, that although UCCNC outperforms ShopBot at a lower price, it has no where near the motion control abilities of WinCNC or Centroid Acorn. And if customization is your forte, UCCNC doesn't have anything on WinCNC, with the added bonus that it does not require any programming or script language to customize, or write a macro for that matter.
    Gary Campbell CNC Technology & Training
    GCnC411 (at) gmail.com www.youtube.com/user/Islaww1/videos

  20. #20

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    Re: Centroid Acorn experiences?

    Quote Originally Posted by islaww View Post
    Olfcnc…
    I also will have to call you out a bit. I am not a Centroid contractor. I am an independent system builder. Since 2015 I have built systems using UCCNC, ShopBot, WinCNC and Centroid Acorn controllers and have "been approved" in one form or another by the mfgr. I build what customers desire, I have no need to push any brand of controller, unless one has a feature that the others may not. Fact is, that I actually will make a few dollars less on an Acorn system than one running UCCNC simply because the controller costs less.

    End of 2017 I stopped using SB controllers, due to comm errors and the fact I could use UCCNC to replace it at a lower cost to my customers. Even tho UCCNC was not as smooth or adjustable as WinCNC, it cost a lot less, so I sell more systems. I didn't drop UCCNC until after I had proven to my self that Centroid Acorn far outperformed UCCNC. It offers me the adjustability to fine tune for smooth motion, equal to that which is offered by WinCNC at a much lower cost.

    You seem to make a number of unqualified comparative analyses between Acorn and UCCNC, hardware and software. Have you actually ever purchased and used one? I have. I personally would not judge a controller that I haven't installed on at least a half dozen machines. Routers, mills, lathes and numerous specialty machines.

    I can honestly say that after building at least a half dozen UCCNC systems and testing them, reporting bugs, getting assistance from advanced US users and from developer support, that although UCCNC outperforms ShopBot at a lower price, it has no where near the motion control abilities of WinCNC or Centroid Acorn. And if customization is your forte, UCCNC doesn't have anything on WinCNC, with the added bonus that it does not require any programming or script language to customize, or write a macro for that matter.
    Very interesting
    Thanks for sharing your experience

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