To get started, you will need to have a PC running the LinuxCNC
software so that you can make your setup. To get the latest ISO (the
data to create an install DVD), you should go here: LINUXCNC DOWNLOAD PAGE
This presumes you want the English version, if not, then start directly
on the linuxcnc.org
page and search for the files needed for your language. Once you have
the PC set up with the new operating system, you are ready to configure
your own CNC machine driver. The driver software is called AXIS and it
can be configured in a number of ways. The quickest way to do this is
with the STEPCONFIG WIZARD that can be located in the top menu under
You can find additional information on using the wizard from the LinuxCNC Wizard Page
which will likely prove very useful to you as you answer the various
If you are still very new to CNC, I have written a
PDF document that may also be very helpful to
Here is a video to help you see what the steps are, it's about 15
minutes long. There is closed captioning... and if you want, you can
tell YouTube to translate to another language if English is not your
Setting up LinuxCNC using the Step Configuration Wizard
breakout board is a circuit board that allows you to make connections
with simple terminal connectors. In my original configuration for my
milling machine, I made my own board. The advantage to using an
available board is that you can find more support for it. It also means
that when you go to troubleshoot your system, others will have a good
idea of problems and corrections. I chose to go with a Stainsmart
5-Axis Breakout board.
To make life easier... I also drew up a
nice reference card that will help you in figuring out which pins to
connect for what signal you are attempting to read or control.
have the PDF document avalable here: BREAKOUT BOARD PINS
I am working on a
new project, a small milling machine that I can take to the meetings
with me to teach people about how to set up and use a CNC machine. With
all the parts laying on the table it looked like a Frankenstein Lab or
something... so I decided to call this mini-series "Frankenlab" .
I hope you enjoy this and find it useful...
Starting the Frankenlab project.
Getting the basic machine running... still needs calibration... but