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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Posts
    138

    Need help please

    Hi, i have been looking at developing a control panel to be used for various types of cnc machines. But i am not sure what people's requirements would be.

    Basically i need to know what people would be looking for when shopping for something like this.
    Although i have no problem building the unit i am unsure what i should include, my own likes/requirements are usually over engineered, thus i would like some input please

    So far i have the following

    1) For now it will be for nema 23 steppers, not looking at servo's system atm
    2) The VFD will be inside the same box as the other components
    3) 230V system only
    4) UCCNC
    5) G540 with an option to add another drive???
    6) Maximun spindle size of 2.2Kw

    Any input will be greatly appreciated cause i just cannot decide on the final setup

    I milled what i thought was the final gland plate today but manage to stuff it up, even forgot the gland hole for spindle cable



    Thanks
    Erick

  2. #2
    Registered
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    226

    Re: Need help please

    3) 230V system only
    That significantly limits your market. I'd design it with power supplies that can accept either 120v or 240v 50/60hz; and set up the mounting holes for the VFD to accept several popular VFDs (including the Chinese spindles, some of which require two modules - a 48v SMPS and the VFD itself). Then you could offer several configuration options; but have only one SKU for the panel frame itself.

    4) UCCNC
    I'd add the mounting holes for some other choices as well. Many people like UCCNC; but others are partial to Mach 4. Adding some holes gives you the option of offering both.

    5) G540 with an option to add another drive???
    The G540 is a nice module; but some machines may need a bigger drive option. I'd also offer G203V drives.

    You have a bunch of IEC power connections on that panel... why? I can understand power in for the whole system; and perhaps power out for an external PC case... but what are the others for?

    What are the four 4-pin aviation connectors for?

    I would not mount the G540 externally to the case. I would put it inside, next to the motion control card (UCCNC, Mach 4, etc). I would run DB9 jumpers to connectors mounted on the case; where the stepper motor cables would attach. This would keep the connection from the motion control card to the G540 (or G203Vs, etc) internal to the case.

    I would also give serious consideration to mounting the PC inside the main case; perhaps with a MiniITX motherboard.

    Is this just the control electronics; or are you also going to provide a user interface panel (monitor/touchscreen, cycle-start & feed-hold buttons, e-stop, jog wheel, keyboard, etc)?


  3. #3

    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Posts
    138

    Re: Need help please

    Britt, thanks for your input /advise

    "That significantly limits your market. I'd design it with power supplies that can accept either 120v or 240v 50/60hz; and set up the mounting holes for the VFD to accept several popular VFDs (including the Chinese spindles, some of which require two modules - a 48v SMPS and the VFD itself). Then you could offer several configuration options; but have only one SKU for the panel frame itself"

    The power supply that i am using does accept 110V, reason why i wanted to limit the supply voltage was due to the fact that the VFD i am supplying with the panel is 240V.

    "I'd add the mounting holes for some other choices as well. Many people like UCCNC; but others are partial to Mach 4. Adding some holes gives you the option of offering both"

    This is not a problem, i have a base that will /could also accept eg the smoothstepper.

    "The G540 is a nice module; but some machines may need a bigger drive option. I'd also offer G203V drives"

    Reason for the g540 is basically space saving, usually i would use leadshine drives.

    "You have a bunch of IEC power connections on that panel... why? I can understand power in for the whole system; and perhaps power out for an external PC case... but what are the others for?"

    The large iec is the power input/filter....the others will be internally switched but externally supplied for mains devices.

    "What are the four 4-pin aviation connectors for?"

    Limits/proxies or any other low voltage equipment, need not be four pin.

    "I would not mount the G540 externally to the case. I would put it inside, next to the motion control card (UCCNC, Mach 4, etc). I would run DB9 jumpers to connectors mounted on the case; where the stepper motor cables would attach. This would keep the connection from the motion control card to the G540 (or G203Vs, etc) internal to the case."

    The connection to the motion controller will be inside reason for the additional 25 pin plug, basically just a loop if required.

    "I would also give serious consideration to mounting the PC inside the main case; perhaps with a MiniITX motherboard."

    Space will be a huge problem if i were to do this??

    "Is this just the control electronics; or are you also going to provide a user interface panel (monitor/touchscreen, cycle-start & feed-hold buttons, e-stop, jog wheel, keyboard, etc)?"

    Control panel, user interface/buttons will be external, reason for all the 4 pin connector

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Posts
    138

    Re: Need help please

    This is exactly the reason for this thread, all the options are driving me up the wall

    obviously lots to consider such as ease of manufacture and cost

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Posts
    138

    Re: Need help please

    Okay, so i made a temporary gland plate from acrylic. Moved stuff around to be where they were supposed to be.

    Labeling of the plugs etc will be engraved into the gland plate

    My thinking was that if someone still had an old pc and used their pport then they would just plug into the 25p on the g540
    Obviously the ethernet port would not be used/blanked out, same for the 25p plug.
    Then if they choose the option of a motion controller then i already have provision for uccnc uc300 and smoothstepper
    Would be as simple as to use a short loop between the 25p on the g540 and the one just below it on the outside

    Reason for this is to reduce wiring inside the box

    What do you guys think????

    Many thanks
    Erick

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Posts
    138

    Re: Need help please

    ....

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Posts
    138

    Re: Need help please

    Anyone else with some advise???

    Please

    I need to finalize the design so i can start wiring and testing
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails panel5a.jpg  

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Posts
    138

    Re: Need help please

    Decided not to use the g540 and the vfd in this panel. Decided to keep things simple for a start. There will be four Leadshine drives 5.6A, with the option of a fifth drive in this panel. Motion controller either the ess or the uc300eth....good quality bob, power relay, power relays for external devices. Plugs for the spindle control start/speed. Also enough plugs for limits, e/stops etc. Automatic cooling control for the panel. Large capacity power supply for motors, 12V and 5V power supplies. Main switch, mains filter, mains fuse. Properly documented, diagram, all wire numbers added.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Aug 2019
    Posts
    295

    Re: Need help please

    1. You need to think about the fact that we are entering 2020 soon. If you are serious about offering a turn key solution, and you want it to sell-out, you need to ditch that square shoe-box cabinet that everyone of us can build in a weekend with equivalent if not better components, and go completely crazy aesthetic-wise. Google image "DMG Mori controller" for inspiration (organic curves, led/el, honeycombs/meshed/brushed/anodized, etc).

    2. You need a powerful small board computer with built-in micro-controller + capacitive touch display on the control. For something capable of running both Linux & Windows, see LattePanda Co. (Alpha).

    3. So many other things, but I think you can clearly picture and understand where I'm going with this.

    Perhaps not the ideas you wanted to hear, and a bit harsh, but I'll say this again; "if you want to be able to market your product".

    Hope this helps none the less
    G'luck

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Posts
    138

    Re: Need help please

    Quote Originally Posted by Mecanix View Post
    1. You need to think about the fact that we are entering 2020 soon. If you are serious about offering a turn key solution, and you want it to sell-out, you need to ditch that square shoe-box cabinet that everyone of us can build in a weekend with equivalent if not better components, and go completely crazy aesthetic-wise. Google image "DMG Mori controller" for inspiration (organic curves, led/el, honeycombs/meshed/brushed/anodized, etc).

    2. You need a powerful small board computer with built-in micro-controller + capacitive touch display on the control. For something capable of running both Linux & Windows, see LattePanda Co. (Alpha).

    3. So many other things, but I think you can clearly picture and understand where I'm going with this.

    Perhaps not the ideas you wanted to hear, and a bit harsh, but I'll say this again; "if you want to be able to market your product".

    Hope this helps none the less
    G'luck
    Thanks for your input....i honestly do not know what the problem with the steel control box is. This only houses the equipment and can be tucked away from sight. The hmi side of things i do agree with you....however i see the computer and the motion control software as the "hmi". Installing a computer inside the cabinet is a good idea, i am just not sure people would like to pay for this....most guys i know are just using their laptops.

    I guess my idea is to supply a good quality control box for people who don't want to build one them self. Companies like cncrouterparts do something similar and they seem to be successful with it.

    From an Electrical safety point of view a steel approved enclosure is the standard. Once i have my website up and running i will see how the interest for this panel is, the idea will be to also supply cable and other stuff.
    Listening to what customers want/would like is obviously very important.

    As for people able to build the same panel or even something better is true....but also true for anything on the market.

  11. #11

    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Posts
    138

    Re: Need help please

    The panel powered up and everything working great. Next will be to wire up the limits etc and test. I used single core cables to the spindle and cable tied the stepper cables to it on purpose to confirm resistance to electrical noise. All good, ran long programs to confirm that there are no lost steps. The final box for sale might look slightly different but i am happy with the results. Hopefully the cost will be on par with similar spec products.

  12. #12

    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Posts
    138

    Re: Need help please

    Milled e few bits for the test rig, which will allow me to add bits to the stepper motors for testing positioning and torque.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails IMG20191013151951 (1).jpg  

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