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Two shields?

Posted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 3:43 pm
by Max Metz
As someone who is a little baffled by the electronics, like a lizard in a swimming race, is it possible to run two stepper shields concurrently on the same Aduino, in my case the machine kit will likely arrive with x,y and z controllers to fit on and fill a single shield (if my understanding is correct) - can I just add another a, b and c shield with controllers attached in the future?

Thanks in advance for being gentle. :D

Re: Two shields?

Posted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 4:57 pm
by Tom Smith
Hi Max -

The Arduino Uno doesn't have enough pins to drive two shields, so far as I know. I welcome correction from the others on the board, however... if you use the shields, you can get 4 axis for use; the grblShield only provides 3. Both are sufficient for the ShapeOko in its cutting capacity.

Out of curiosity, what are you envisioning that would use the the extra a,b,c controllers?


Two shields?

Posted: Sun Jun 03, 2012 5:03 pm
by edwardrford
If you are looking for an extra axis or two or three then look at tinyG from synthetos (same people that make the grblShield).

Alden (who is a member on this forum) created it, and is very active in its development. tinyG supports a machine with up to 6 independent axis. Plus, its wicked fast. Watch Alden's 'hello world' video on the wiki to see a shapeoko running at 16,000 mm/s. Blazing fast....


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Re: Two shields?

Posted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 3:27 am
by Max Metz
Thanks for the reference to the Buildlog shields, much appreciated Tom.

The availability of extra controllers will give me more opportunity to add extra axis capability in the future, particularly the 4th radial axis running along the x or y on the Shapeoko. The additional 5th and 6th axis allow even further expansion, on the head traveling on the z axis. Each additional axis increases the 3d routing capability of the machine when subtracting material.

The other option I suppose is to go the additive route, an extrude head and hotplate, something I have already seen discussed on here. Best regards and thanks again. :D

Re: Two shields?

Posted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 3:43 am
by Max Metz
Thanks Edward, I have bookmarked the site, the tinyG is a bullet - makes the Shapeoko go like a rat up a drainpipe. The accuracy too, displayed in the spirograph simulation video is pretty impressive - particularly when the cutter ends where it began and instantly lifts. I found myself saying, '...and on a machine just like mine.' Life is cool. :D