Possible GC issue Z-Axis or Tool Change

Today, for the first time in 4 weeks, I’ve been able to do some work with Maslow (too cold outside until today). I upgraded to GC/FW 1.03 and did the calibration. When I went to cut something, I ran into a problem and am not sure what’s causing it. I’ll describe what happened.

  1. I knocked the sled over changing the router bit.
  2. I reattached the sled and tried to zero the Z-Axis. The Z-Axis did not move.
  3. I disassembled the sled to get the Z-Axis motor out.
  4. I popped the Z-Axis motor pcb back in place
  5. I tested the Z-Axis motor using the zero feature. It moved. I cheered excitedly.
  6. I rebuilt the sled and attached the sled to the chains.
  7. I tried to zero the Z-Axis but nothing happened (not even a sound from the other two motors)
  8. I tried moving the sled to the right but got nothing.
  9. I unplugged the motor board and plugged it back in. Nothing.
  10. I unplugged the usb cable and plugged it back in. Nothing.
  11. I closed GC and reopened it. Everything started working again.
  12. I started to cut a job that used two tools. First was the 1/8-inch bit that was in the router.
  13. When it finished, GC told me to switch tools.
  14. I switched router bits and went to set the zero on the Z-Axis. Nada.
  15. I think I tried to move the router to the left and it didn’t move.
  16. I closed GC and reopened it. Everything started working again.
  17. I made a new gcode with just the last cut and was able to finish it.

So. It seems to me that either something with adjusting the Z-Axis is causing an issue or something with the tool change is… or something is still wrong with my Z-Axis motor and its freaking out GC. I will say, however, it ran flawlessly for 4 hours going up and down carving out a rather intricate piece. Was there any changes to the Z-Axis set zero routines lately?

I was thinking that it might have been possible that I hit the stop button on the Z-Axis set zero screen accidentally. Does stop actually STOP Maslow completely?

PR #368 in Firmware addressed an issue where a user doing manual z-axis control would see a buffer overflow after five or six z-axis prompts. You’re automated, though, so it doesn’t seem like it should be related.
I wonder whether the encoder on your z-motor might have an intermittent connection. Maybe someone else has a better idea of a way to help.

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Well, it ran flawlessly doing hundreds of ups and downs today on a job, so I have to think it’s working. Maybe the first time it locked up was due to reconnecting the Z-Axis cabling… but the second time, during the tool change, I don’t understand… unless the cable is sensitive and I bumped it pulling out the router motor. I’m going to run some tests tomorrow to see if I can replicate the problem. Does losing the connection to the motor result in needing to restart GC?

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Do you have 3D printer?

Thank you

I believe so. I think ‘stop’ is the emergancy stop, and can leave the machine in
the state where you need to reset the chain lengths (the manual calibration
where you set a point on the sprockets to point stright up and put the marked
link on the chain there)

No 3d printer… yet…

Restarting GC solved the problem, so I didn’t lose whatever calibration I had. And it finished the cut perfectly. I’ll try to recreate it but right now I’m dealing with a bad back… i threw it out jumping up at the Jax/buffalo game couple weeks ago and stood too long yesterday, I was going through malslow withdrawal and apparently overdid it…


Sorry about your back. I’ve been there. Take care of that.

Thank you


PM me you address. I’ll print you a Z-axis motor cable holder and mail it to you.

as seen in:

Thank you


Very nice! PM on the way!

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