I have an S3-XL machine that’s just about one year old and I’m currently using Carbide Create for programming and Carbide Motion V3.0.366 for machine operation. All is running great with my S3 and I’ve made many parts, however jogging is jumpy and the X-Y motion is also jumpy while machining radii at higher feed rates. To compensate, I slow down the feed rate to keep radii smooth, but this sometimes causes problems with overheating of plastic materials.
I’m considering upgrading to CM4 and GRBL 1.1 because as I understand it the X-Y motion is more fluid with this version. This S3 is my first exposure to running a CNC and I’m in the dark when it comes GRBL and machine controllers. I don’t know what version of GRBL is running and I’m not even sure how to check, but I assume it is V0.9. I’ve visited the webpage that explains the upgrade process and it all seems straight forward so no issues there.
The main reason for this post is that I’m confused about homing and I want to make sure that I’m not giving up anything in the way that I work if I make the upgrade. To explain, my normal method of setting up a job is to jog the spindle to a known datum point on the workpiece and then zero X, Y, and Z. From there I run my NC program to machine the part. If I’m making multiples of the same part, the last step in my NC program is one that moves the spindle back out of the way so that I can remove a finished part from the fixture and replace it with a new workpiece.
My main concern is this: I’ve seen comments regarding homing and it sounds like this may be an automatic part of the machine operation when running CM4 / GRBL1.1.
Is this a routine that occurs only when the machine is initially turned on, or does the spindle return to “home” (back-right corner) after every program cycle? I am hoping this is not the case.
Can homing be disabled?
What is the relationship between the “home” position the XYZ datum point of the workpiece? Do I need to take the the “home” position into consideration when programming within Carbide Create or is it not a factor?
I assume that the “home” position and the workpiece’s zero datum are not one in the same. Can the XYZ zero point still be set anywhere within the working range of the machine?
I’m guessing that the answers to these questions are probably obvious to experienced users, but I’m just a bit confused by the entire homing process. Any help to explain would be greatly appreciated.