Z axis reversed mid project

What could cause this problem? The Z axis reversed mid project. Instead of retracting to a safe height it plunged that far into the board and then dragged sideways. It was a 5 minute job so I decided to re-run it to see if it was bad Gcode and it reversed the Z axis earlier in the project.

Is this a Carbide Motion problem? Should I be hunting for a frayed wire? All screws are tight.

Usually this is caused by lost steps on retract, which is usually a mechanical issue:

  • avoid slotting — consistently high tooling engagement can result in lost steps
  • make sure nothing interferes w/ retracts — dust hoses are a frequent culprit, but the router power cord getting caught in the Z-axis can also cause this

or the endmill pulling out — use the button only to hand-tighten, then fully tighten w/ a firm squeeze w/ a good quality pair of wrenches.

Or, it’s an electrical/connection issue — make sure all wiring is in good shape and all connectors secure.

Let us know what you find out at support@carbide3d.com and we’ll do our best to work through this w/ you.

Electrical connection seems to be the culprit. The first connectors by the Z motor are quite warm. Machine hasn’t even been running.

I can redo those connections.

Any chance I’m just treating a symptom and it’s actually a weird draw on the motor or something?

There was a run of bad connectors — let us know about this at support@carbide3d.com and we’ll send you a replacement set of Z-axis wiring extensions (assuming we’re talking about a 4 or a Pro).

Pro XXL. I’ll send an email. Thanks a ton, Will!