Getting started with Easel, G Code, and GC

I’m struggling to learn acout G Code and GC. The machine is up and did the Maslow logo cut, but I don’t know how to cut my own stuff.

I learned how to make SVG and export G Code. However, my code shows up in GC with lots of extra lines (are those where the router will move?) And I can’t move the shape inside GC. This is supposed to be a simple shape of an ice cream cone and would like it on the left of my wood.

move the router on the frame by pressing the arrow keys in the direction you want it to move and then press the “define home” button to change where the red crosshair will be located and it will move the drawing to a new location.

All moves, even those that don’t cut are shown in ground control.


Thank you for the help!

Do I need to be connected to move the arrows? I’ve tried doing it without being plugged in and nothing happens.

Happy to help! The home position is stored in the arduino, to change it, the sled moves and then you save it so you must be connected via USB for it to work.

I currently have my machine plugged in and ready to move/make a cut, but it won’t let me change the location of my cut (trying arrows, right clicking, double clicking)

I use webcontrol, so I’ll demonstrate in pictures. Hopefully this will help:

This is what my screen looks like:

After loading a gcode file, it looks like this:

to move the location of the cutout, you must change the home position (the green reticle)
in webcontrol, you can eyeball it with a right click and select move here or define home

Red is where the sled currently is. green is the home position, and black is where the sled will move next. by pressing the “save home” button the green reticle moves to the red reticle and redraws the cut.

So you move the sled, save the home position, and then cut when it fits.

In webcontrol, it is similar, but you don’t have the right click menu, so you have to drive the sled around and select the home location and then cut… or move your cut in your design software so the home value is in the middle of your cut piece. Lots of options. Try it out.

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It worked, thank you so much! Made my first cut today…of something I coded and moved in GC! :slight_smile:


So, that worked! Now…I’m thinking Easel is not the best for making gcode. It is taking too much time to cut something, due to a needless amount of passes, plunges, and movements. Is there a better program for creating gcode that will make it more efficient?

I’m sure someone in the community would have a better answer. I only generate gcode from inkscape because I’m too lazy to learn anything else and it works for my purposes. There is a need for better gcode generation and madgrizzle was looking into adding an optimizer to webcontrol, but it only worked on certain platforms.

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I have great luck with Easel creating my G-code, but I can think of a few things. Make sure your bit size is correct in the upper right hand corner. Easel default to 1/8" bit (which makes it cut only 1/16" because you normally only cut half the width of your router bit on each pass. I go to the bottom of the bit list and choose “Other” and then type in .250" for the bit size, then it cuts 1/8" each pass and cuts the time in half.

Hope that helps, there is also a setting where you can define how much depth it cuts on each pass, just make sure you don’t go too crazy and break a bit. :slight_smile:


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from what I’m seeing, the problem with Easel seems to be that when cutting
curves, it breaks it into a TON of tiny moves in a quest for accuracy. Wood
cutting (and the maslow) don’t need that precision, and the maslow is fairly
slow at processing lines of g-code, so if you have 10 tiny moves instead of 1
arc or larger move, it will take a lot longer for the maslow to cut it.


Out of curiosity, what is the rate limiting aspect of Maslow? Is it the processing speed of the g-code interpreter? Or is the motor/machine performance? I’m new to this, and still trying to get my head around what the Maslow can do for me.

Are there tutorials or videos you can share on how you learned to make gcode in inkscape?

processing speed of the g-code interpreter and the fact that each line is
sent/completed/acknowledged before the next line is sent, so the sending
computer takes time to respond.

there is an asyn mode, but it can cause problems under some conditions, so it’s
disabled by default.

since the maslow is a fairly slow machine to begin with, this doesn’t cause
problems unless you have g-code that is making many tiny moves, and those moves
are usually too small to notice.

David Lang

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Yep, I noticed that. It also made a TON of useless moves, where it would move…plunge, pull up and then move again. Like it didn’t even cut when it got to a spot.

There is a wiki entry about how to use inkscape with the gcodetools extension that is installed by default. I’m sure there are videos about inkscape, but I don’t know if they cover gcodetools.

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Got this today with Fusion360 as well; almost started a fire because it was rubbing sawdust too much when it slowed down (see my other thread).