My father just recently purchased a second-hand Maslow v1 with Z-axis motor (something very similar to this kit: Complete Maslow full kit – EastBaySource). He spent over an hour at the seller’s shop getting a rundown of features/calibration and seeing a couple sample cuts: it all worked fine before disassembly, but now I’ve been tasked with getting it up and running in his shop.
The short version of this story is that the “Test Motors / Encoders” button does nothing despite having the newest Web Control installed and the firmware flashed from within it to the Arduino. The long version is below:
We installed Pop_OS 20.10 on an old laptop to dedicate to the Maslow.
We installed WebControl v0.94 from
https://github.com/WebControlCNC/WebControl/releases. After launching,
systemctl shows the service as active and the web interface shows up fine.
We reassembled the frame, mounted the Arduino and Shield, attached power (initially to the Arduino instead of the Shield), and plugged the motors in.
We installed the Arduino IDE and flashed
https://github.com/MaslowCNC/Firmware -> [Green 'Code' Button] -> Download as Zip to the Arduino per the instructions on that page. This part took some digging as the Arduino was not write-accessible but we did eventually get it to flash from within the Arduino IDE.
We tried to connect WebControl to the Arduino to start hooking up chains, but got a connection error message. We then flashed the Arduino with stock firmware from within WebControl and it began connecting successfully.
After sending a few commands to see if the motors would turn (they didn’t), I realized we had power in the Arduino instead of the shield, so swapped that over. Pressing the move icons still doesn’t work. Using the Test Motors / Encoders feature does nothing: no motor spin, no electrical noise, nothing.
I’m creating this post a day later so some details are a little fuzzy, but at this point we have an orange blinky light on the Arduino and two solid green lights on the Shield and absolutely no response from the machine despite showing as “Connected” within WebControl.
We’ve tried moving the motor plugs between different ports on the Arduino, a different USB cord, a different USB port, Holey firmware from within WebControl, flashing stock firmware from the Arduino IDE again (this time there weren’t connection errors), reseating the Shield, and repowering everything a couple times, all while re-enabling write access on the Arduino each time (just in case this could’ve mattered; I have no idea.)
He didn’t let on but I could tell he was very disappointed that it may never work, so I’m here to see if anyone has some tips or ideas for me.
At the very least I’d like to figure out where this chain is broken so I can start narrowing down the issue. If the firmware is flashing and the connection is showing up in WebControl, then the Arduino should be fine, correct? Or is the status of “Connected” within WebControl very easy to achieve despite there still being some potential problem with the Arduino?
How can I confirm that messages are being sent properly from WebControl to the Arduino and that the Arduino is receiving them?
How can I confirm that messages are being sent properly from the Arduino to the Shield, and that the Shield is receiving them?
And if the messages are going to the Shield, how can I confirm that the Shield is outputting the right signals for motor control? I could put a multimeter on the pins but I wouldn’t know which ones to test.
If he hadn’t seen it working just last week I would tell him I thought the Shield was broken, but I don’t know how to confirm this. I’m really hoping that’s not the case, as $150 is a lot to spend for a new board, but if I can for sure confirm it will fix the problem then I’d be comfortable recommending it to him.
Unfortunately I am away from the machine now so can’t do a lot of in-person troubleshooting, but will be able to report back by the end of this weekend. Hopefully I can get half a dozen ideas to try and get it running. Thank you for any help or ideas you might be able to provide!