I am waiting for my mechanical kit to arrive from Inventables and have been looking at electronics options. I really do like the way EMC2/LinuxCNC works as opposed to Grbl but have been struggling to identify an acceptable stepper driver solution. Going down the list of options currently on the Wiki each option has issues.
The open source CNC controller from buildlog.net is difficult to source even though Edward clearly loves this as his preferred setup . I could order a PCB, source all the parts in the BOM and build it myself but that seems like a whole lot of work and with the PCB setup costs is just too expensive for what I would get out of it.
It would appear that the HobbyCNC EZ Driver board does not work with 4 wire stepper motors like the recommended one from Sparkfun. So either I find a 5, 6 or 8 wire stepper motor which isn't as easy as I thought (especially for Nema 17 size motors) or look for another driver.
The Xylotex is just plain expensive but if people have excellent experience with it I might consider it.
The last option, the HY-TB4DV-M CNC controller, is sold on eBay but seems to have serious design issues with how the TB6560AHQ chips are used … see http://www.shapeoko.com/forum/viewtopic ... 4&t=9#p321 and the links to the CNCZone forum postings on this.
All in all, not very promising.
And then I found this on eBay for $99 + $46 shipping from China (see also http://www.wantmotor.com/ProductsView.a ... =75&sid=88).
What I think might be good about it:
- Wantai Motor is the same company that manufactures the recommended stepper motor being sold on SparkFun.
- Attractive price
- Nice all-in-one purchase to cover everything that I need
- Drivers are in professional cases.
- Drivers are separate so if one blows it can be (relatively) easily replaced (like the Polulu's)
- It comes from China with no real guarrantee
- Doesn't mention support for Mach3 or EMC2
- Stepper motors in kit are 56 oz-in as opposed to the recommended 68 oz-in
- Stepper motors are 200 step as opposed to 400 step
Any comments/suggestions/responses would be appreciated. My thinking is that if it has even a tentative blessing from Edward and other knowledgeable members I would consider buying it and testing it out with the idea that it could become either a recommended buy in the Wiki or we could work on a solution to stock it State-side.