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Build a professional grade Linux CNC control with Beaglebone black and our CNC cape.
Build a professional grade Linux CNC control with Beaglebone black and our CNC cape.
Build a professional grade Linux CNC control with Beaglebone black and our CNC cape.
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49 backers pledged €5,922 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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Up to 4 axis Beaglebone black based CNC control

€5,922

49

CNC Cape

The goal of this project is to enable you to build a professional grade CNC control, based on the Beaglebone Black as CPU board and LinuxCNC Open Source Software.

Even nowadays with a vast range of components offered, it is a complex task to build a CNC control.

We will help you to do this, by offering the following:

  • An opto coupled cape for Beaglebone Black.
  • Pre-installed Open Source LinuxCNC Software (Machinekit).
  • Schematics how to connect the motor drivers and home switches to the cape.
  • An easy to use setup program to adapt the system parameters to your needs.

Together with the cape we deliver a Beaglebone Black compatible SD card with a pre installed Machinekit CNC Software. Machinekit is a port of LinuxCNC Open Source Software for the Beaglebone Black.

All you have to do to get a working CNC control is, plug the CNC Cape in your Beaglebone Black, connect motor drivers of your choice, end switches and motors according to the schematic. Then put the SD card you got from us into your Beaglebone Black and turn on the system.

The system will boot and Machinekit CNC software is started automatically. Now you can load CNC program files and enjoy the full functionality of Linux CNC. You can load the CNC programs from a USB stick or over a LAN connection. With LinuxCNC software you can execute CNC programs which consist of g-codes. You can find a quick reference of the valid codes here: 

http://linuxcnc.org/docs/html/gcode.html

We will provide working profiles for 1, 2, 3 and 4 axis systems. With our setup software you can choose the number of axis you have connected and adapt the system parameters such as maximum speed, steps per millimeter/inch and acceleration according to your needs.

Although you dont´t need to know the system internals of Machinekit software to use it, you have full access to all internal parameters and settings, even the source code is available, since Machinekit is open source. There is a large playground for you, if you want to dig deeper into the technical details of LinuxCNC / Machinekit.

Technical Data

  • 16 Opto coupled digital inputs for end stops, software emergency stop and additional purposes
  • Profiles for 1 to 4 axis
  • Step / Direction outputs for each axis
  • 8 Additional outputs for special purposes for example spindle or cooling
  • 100 KHz Maximum step rate

There is a step and direction output for each axis, therefore you can connect all stepper or servo motor drivers with step/direction inputs.

There are no opto couplers at the output ports. Most motor drivers have opto coupled inputs. Decoupling of the motor drivers is achieved this way.

No additional power supply is needed for the cape, because it is supplied from the Beaglebone Black. The Beaglebone Black is supplied by a single 5V/2A power supply.

Motor drivers

You may use any motor drivers with step/direction inputs together with the CNC cape. For those of you, that are not familiar with motor drivers, we selected some powerful microstep stepper motor drivers. The drivers are suitable for two phase stepper motors and can drive a maximum current of 4 A per motor. You can use an input voltage of 24 to 50V.

4A Stepper Motor driver
4A Stepper Motor driver

If you want to get motor drivers from us instead of using drivers of your choice, please select the 3 axis or 4 axis driver package. The size of one motor driver is: 120x75x35 mm

Risks and challenges

On the technical side, there should be no problems. We have a working prototype, that we tested in different applications. All use cases showed in the video are driven by our prototype system.

We have a reliable hardware manufacturer and will deliver a tested, ROHS conform board from lead free production.
Importing the board should be no problem for EU and US, but we cannot check import regulations for all countries.

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  1. Reward no longer available

    Pledge €78 or more About $89

    Cape - Early bird 1

    Opto coupled I/O cape for Beaglebone black, pre Installed Machinekit CNC software on Micro SD card, System description with schematics for motor driver connection.

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    Reward no longer available 20 backers
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge €88 or more About $100

    Cape - Early bird 2

    Opto coupled I/O cape for Beaglebone black, pre Installed Machinekit CNC software on Micro SD card, System description with schematics for motor driver connection.

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    Limited 13 backers
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge €98 or more About $112

    Opto coupled I/O cape for Beaglebone black, pre Installed Machinekit CNC software on Micro SD card, System description with schematics for motor driver connection.

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge €190 or more About $217

    Early bird

    3 axis Driver Package

    Opto coupled I/O cape for Beaglebone black, pre Installed Machinekit CNC software on Micro SD card, System description with schematics for motor driver connection.

    3 Stepper Motor Drivers. 24-50V, 4A, Up to 1600 Microsteps, Size: 120x75x35 mm each.

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    Limited 5 backers
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  5. Reward no longer available

    Pledge €220 or more About $251

    Early bird

    4 axis Driver Package

    Opto coupled I/O cape for Beaglebone black, pre Installed Machinekit CNC software on Micro SD card, System description with schematics for motor driver connection.

    4 Stepper Motor Drivers. 24-50V, 4A, Up to 1600 Microsteps, Size: 120x75x35 mm each.

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    Reward no longer available 5 backers
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge €240 or more About $274

    3 axis Driver Package

    Opto coupled I/O cape for Beaglebone black, pre Installed Machinekit CNC software on Micro SD card, System description with schematics for motor driver connection.

    3 Stepper Motor Drivers. 24-50V, 4A, Up to 1600 Microsteps, Size: 120x75x35 mm each.

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    0 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge €240 or more About $274

    Early bird

    4 axis Driver Package

    Opto coupled I/O cape for Beaglebone black, pre Installed Machinekit CNC software on Micro SD card, System description with schematics for motor driver connection.

    4 Stepper Motor Drivers. 24-50V, 4A, Up to 1600 Microsteps, Size: 120x75x35 mm each.

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    1 backer
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge €310 or more About $354

    3 axis Driver Package with Beaglebone Black

    Opto coupled I/O cape for Beaglebone black, pre Installed Machinekit CNC software on Micro SD card, System description with schematics for motor driver connection.

    3 Stepper Motor Drivers. 24-50V, 4A. Up to 1600 Microsteps, Size: 120x75x35 mm each.

    Beaglebone Black Rev C Board.

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Funding period

- (33 days)