Enough is enough!

As I do research for various projects I find myself spending a good portion of my time hooking up and configuring the various CNC controllers.  In the past I have build all in one enclosures that housed both the PC and the CNC electronics.  These are worked ok, but are hard to troubleshoot if a problem arises and makes it impossible to experiment with new controllers and PC builds.

It's time to build a controller enclosure that allows me to quickly connect a controller to any PC and CNC.  This will allow me to easily borrow a controller from another build if needed.  It will also allow me to easily troubleshoot any issues that I may encounter.

 

The enclosure will look much like the one shown here.  This is an early prototype and I will be adding features as this project progresses.

The design will accommodate just about any material 1/4" - 1/2" thick.  In this case I am using 3/8" thick PVC available at many home centers in 4' x 8' sheets.

I have noticed that Home Depot is now stocking this stuff in 2' x 4" sheets as well.

The rear of the enclosure will have Dsub connectors for the stepper motors (upper right).

A Dsub will also be used to provide a connection to the homing switches.

These will be placed on a acrylic panel that will attach to the rear of the enclosure.

This will vary slightly for the G540 which will be mounted on the rear.

The front of each enclosure I will have a E-stop switch, and probe connector on the left.

A power switch will be placed on the right.

The right side will include an intake fan. The left will have a vent for exhaust.

In some cases an intake and exhaust vent will be added to the front and back for use with a larger 48v, 12.5 Amp power supply.

 

The electronics will be mounted to the bottom of the enclosure in most cases.

In this case I have mounted a 4-axis Sainsmart controller and 24v power supply.

The heart of the enclosure are the three sided corner brackets.   Information on the various brackets can be found here:

Corner Brackets

Please note that I will not go into any controller hookup details, as these are covered in my various books.  The goal here is to help you build an enclosure for you controller and power supply after you have your machine up and running.