3018 cnc

3018 cnc DEFAULT

The CNC 3018-Pro router arrived with GRBL 1.1f installed on the Camtool V3.3 board and ran well enough, although it accelerated very slowly. After installing Home switches, figuring out the travel limits, and trying different speeds & accelerations, it runs much better:

3018 CNC - Endstop switches - overview

Configuration values to remember for next time:

turns off the stepper motor drivers after 100 ms of inactivity:

3018 X - 100ms timeout - 100mm-min 12V 500 ma-div

There’s no force worth mentioning on a diamond scribe when the motors stop, so there’s no reason to keep them energized, and the DRV8825 chips resume from the same microstep when re-enabled.

reverses the X and Z motor rotation, so you can use the same type of cable on all three axes and have them move the way you’d expect.

turns on Soft Limits, thereby producing an error when you (or the G-Code) tries to move beyond the machine’s limits, as defined by the values relative to the Home switch positions.

leaves Hard Limits off, because I didn’t see much point in switches on both ends of all the axes for this little bitty machine.

enables the Home cycle, after which you must start each session by homing the machine.

sets the Pull-off distance from all three Home positions, so the machine ends up at absolute XYZ = -1.000 mm relative to the switch trip points after homing. This depends on the mechanics of the limit switches, but seems OK with the MBI-style switches I used:

3018 CNC - X axis endstop - 1 mm pull-off

set the XYZ step/mm, which requires knowing the 3018-Pro uses two-start leadscrews with a 2 mm pitch = 4 mm lead:

3018 CNC - two-start leadscrew

The Camtool V3.3 board hardwires the DRV8825 stepper controllers into 32 microstep mode, so:

set the maximum speed along the XYZ axes in mm/min. Note the hard upper limit set by the maximum microcontroller interrupt rate of about 40 k/s:

I’ll have more to say about speed limits, stepper current, torque, and similar topics.

set the acceleration along the XYZ axes in mm/sec². These are two orders of magnitude higher than the default acceleration, which accounts for the as-received sluggish acceleration.

set the XYZ travel limits relative to the Home switch trip points, which feed into the Soft Limits. You could probably eke out another millimeter along each axis, but this is what I came up with.

With all those in place, the coordinate system puts the XY origin dead in the middle of the platform and the Z origin a little bit below its upper travel limit. Set them thusly:

The original and tweaked GRBL configuration settings as a GitHub Gist:

$0=10
$1=25
$2=0
$3=5
$4=0
$5=0
$6=0
$10=1
$11=0.010
$12=0.002
$13=0
$20=0
$21=0
$22=0
$23=0
$24=25.000
$25=500.000
$26=250
$27=1.000
$30=1000
$31=0
$32=0
$100=1600.000
$101=1600.000
$102=1600.000
$110=1000.000
$111=1000.000
$112=800.000
$120=30.000
$121=30.000
$122=30.000
$130=200.000
$131=200.000
$132=200.000

view raw GRBL - as-shipped config.txt hosted with ❤ by GitHub

$0=10
$1=100
$2=0
$3=5
$4=0
$5=0
$6=0
$10=1
$11=0.010
$12=0.020
$13=0
$20=1
$21=0
$22=1
$23=0
$24=100.000
$25=1000.000
$26=25
$27=1.000
$30=1000
$31=0
$32=0
$100=1600.000
$101=1600.000
$102=1600.000
$110=1100.000
$111=1100.000
$112=1100.000
$120=3000.000
$121=3000.000
$122=3000.000
$130=299.000
$131=179.000
$132=44.000
ok
[G54:-147.000,-90.600,-1.500]
[G55:0.000,0.000,0.000]
[G56:0.000,0.000,0.000]
[G57:0.000,0.000,0.000]
[G58:0.000,0.000,0.000]
[G59:0.000,0.000,0.000]
[G28:0.000,0.000,0.000]
[G30:0.000,0.000,0.000]
[G92:0.000,0.000,0.000]
[TLO:0.000]
[PRB:0.000,0.000,0.000:0]
ok

view raw GRBL - config - 2019-08-14.txt hosted with ❤ by GitHub

The as-shipped configuration is mostly for reference, but ya never know when it might come in handy.

Sours: https://softsolder.com/2019/08/22/cnc-3018-pro-grbl-configuration/

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1/ After-sales service contains:
a.    Machine installation and adjustment
b.    Software Settings and using (not include G code programming)
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d.    the machine using problem

2/ When the machine have problem:
a.    Machine problem pictures or video is asked.
b.    General problem solve way will be supplied in 1~2 days,
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3/ General problem solve way: (Machine warranty is 1 year, Cutters don’t have warranty, they are consumables)
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Sours: https://www.toolots.com/cnc-3018-mini-laser-engraving-machine-pcb-milling-machine.html
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3018 Cnc

Hobby Cnc Router kit

Getting started with Cnc machining can be expensive. The mill or router isn’t the only piece of equipment you will need and there is a steep learning curve if you have no previous experience.

Well, good news, if you want to learn the basics on a budget the 3018 cnc pro is ridiculously inexpensive and can be the perfect choice to practice on and give you that jump start in your new hobby.

Preview

Genmitsu CNC 3018-PRO Router Kit GRBL Control 3 Axis Plastic...*
SainSmart Genmitsu CNC Router Machine 3018-PROVer with GRBL...*
MYSWEETY 2 in 1 5500mW CNC 3018Pro-M Engraver Machine, GRBL...*

Description

Genmitsu CNC 3018-PRO Router Kit GRBL Control 3 Axis Plastic...*

SainSmart Genmitsu CNC Router Machine 3018-PROVer with GRBL...*

MYSWEETY 2 in 1 5500mW CNC 3018Pro-M Engraver Machine, GRBL...*

ER Collet & Engraving bits

Preview

Genmitsu CNC 3018-PRO Router Kit GRBL Control 3 Axis Plastic...*

Description

Genmitsu CNC 3018-PRO Router Kit GRBL Control 3 Axis Plastic...*

ER Collet & Engraving bits

Preview

SainSmart Genmitsu CNC Router Machine 3018-PROVer with GRBL...*

Description

SainSmart Genmitsu CNC Router Machine 3018-PROVer with GRBL...*

ER Collet & Engraving bits

Preview

MYSWEETY 2 in 1 5500mW CNC 3018Pro-M Engraver Machine, GRBL...*

Description

MYSWEETY 2 in 1 5500mW CNC 3018Pro-M Engraver Machine, GRBL...*

ER Collet & Engraving bits

The machine I bought to review is the Genmitsu cnc 3018 pro sold on Amazon. (First row, above)

The 3018 pro is a Chinese made kit that is produced under different manufacturing names, but they all appear to originate from the same factory.

It is sold as an ‘engraving machine’, which is sort of like a disclaimer because it is not a particularly capable machine, don’t expect to be machining any type of metal with it.

But I would consider it to be a small cnc router for woodworking and general craft projects like my ER Collet racks. 

A small box of engraving ‘bits’ are included that have a 20 degree inclusive angle, which are totally useless for anything other than engraving lettering. 

These types of cutters are not designed for conventional machining operations. So before I even begin this review I will advise that if you buy this machine you will need some better tooling.

This set, shown below, from the same company, Genmitsu, would be perfect to get started with, they have the same shank diameter as the provided ER collet.

These types of cutter are designed for milling wood, which is what this machine should be used for.

SainSmart Genmitsu 10Pcs Nano Blue Coat End Mill CNC Router...
SainSmart Genmitsu 10Pcs Nano Blue Coat End Mill CNC Router...*
  • ➤Cutting Edge Diameter: 0.8 - 3.0mm (0.8/1.0/1.2/1.4/1.6/1.8/2.0/2.2/2.4/3.0mm), 10Pcs.
  • : ➤Advantage: With sufficient flexural strength and wear resistance, which ensure high work efficiency. Sharp cutting edge, milling, hole and plate edge, clean surface, neat, no glitches.
  • ➤Material: Using ultra-fine grained carbide material, with good milling and cutting performance.
  • ➤Application: PCB, SMT, CNC, Mold, plastic fiber, carbon fiber, hard wood, printed circuit board, and other precision parts processing.
  • ➤Genmitsu CNC Bits Selection Guide: To learn more about how to choose the right bits to meet your needs, please find the Comparison Chart (CNC Bits Buying Guide) at the Product Guides and Documents Section below.

Another useful accessory is this low profile vise, designed specifically for these types of machine.

Sale
Mini Low Profile Bench Vise Workholding Clamp Work Table for...
Mini Low Profile Bench Vise Workholding Clamp Work Table for...*
  • Use as a holding clamp and work table for CNC engraving machine. The clamp is compatible with FoxAlien 3018-SE, Masuter and 4040-XE engraving machine.
  • The clamp can hold the engraving object by the edges without taking up any engraving area.
  • It holds the object tightly and easy to adjust with screws.
  • Product size: 20x8x4 cm/ 7.87”x3.15”x1.57”; Max. holding length: 13cm/ 5”
  • The vise is made of high-quality aluminum, which is durable and strong enough to stay steady while machine is running.

Unboxing the 3018 Pro Cnc Router

The box it gets delivered in (which is inside the Amazon box) is surprisingly compact. It measures approx 17” X 9” X 8”.

3018 box

The contents are well packed in soft foam that is shaped to fit the components.

3018 box contents

The first parts I pulled out were these two small stepper motors. There is a third stepper motor already mounted on the spindle assembly.

3018 stepper motors

Here is the spindle mount assembly. It is constructed from a hard plastic, possibly ABS.

3018 spindle assembly

I had read other reviews that suggested the plastic parts on these machines were 3D printed, but these were made in a plastic injection mold tool. The ejector pin marks are clearly visible.

3018 spindle assembly
spindle assembly bearings

The spindle motor comes with an ER11 collet extension already attached, complete with a 1/8″ ER11 Collet.

3018 spindle motor

There is a 24V power supply, which looks very similar to a laptop power brick.

3018 power supply

The control board comes mounted inside a clear protective case with a built in cooling fan.

3018 controller board
3018 controller enclosure

There is also an ‘offline controller’ supplied that can be used to manually move the machine for setting up your datum positions. Programs can also be ran from this using the supplied micro USB card.

3018 Offline Controller

This controller can be used to operate the machine without a computer connected to it. In fact you are not supposed to connect both the controller and the PC at the same time.

There are a couple of packs of hardware included, one with the screws to build the machine and another pack with clamps for work holding.

3018 hardware
USB cable and clamping hardware

Some green safety glasses are provided as well as a USB drive and a small box of engraving tools. The glasses are green to protect your eyes from the laser, if you add one. (Laser Module Review here.) (laserGRBL software tutorial here)

3018 glasses

There are a set of four ‘Y axis sliders’ which bolt to the underneath of the table and a ‘Y axis nut seat’. These are also made from injection molded plastic.

3018 Y axis guides

These sliders have to be the most disappointing parts in the kit. The base of each part is badly warped and one has lumps on it that need removing so that it can be mounted properly.

poor y axis bushing

The injection mold tool used to make these parts was clearly damaged and poorly made. The warping is probably due to the mold not being cooled properly during use.

3018 warped bushing
3018 warped base

There is a bag of cables for the stepper motors and the spindle, and some small zip ties.

3018 cables

Next out of the box is the mill table. It is made from an aluminum extrusion and appears to be of good quality. This was covered in a protective film.

3018 table
3018 table extrusion

Next out of the box are the structural components of the mill. These consist of aluminum extrusions for the sides and vertical cross braces.

3018 extrusion parts
3018 side extrusions

Although the aluminum extrusions are of good quality they are shipped full of chips from being drilled and tapped. These all need cleaning out, especially from the threads so they don’t get damaged when you assemble them.

3018 end extrusion

The remaining structural components are made from Bakelite. These parts are for the front and back of the base structure and the vertical sides that support the spindle assembly.

3018 Bakelite sides
3018 Bakelite vertical supports

These are the two leadscrews and the ground bars that the table and spindle travel on. These all appear to be very good quality.

3018 leadscrews and spindle guides

You will also receive a small manual, which is as short as possible and includes the word ‘Ubiety’ !

3018 cnc engraver manual

3018 Cnc Assembly

Step 1

3018 step 1

The construction of this machine is very straightforward, there are a few areas to be careful with, which I will point out when needed.

For step 1 you need to clean the chips from the ends of the extrusions and remove the lump(s) from the base of the ‘Y axis sliders’.

There is some flash on the moldings that need removing as well. The emphasis here is to make them sit flat on the bottom of the machine table.

I did not do anything about the warping on the base of these parts, when they are clamped to the machine table they flatten out.

3018 step 1

Step 2

3018 step 2

Step 2 consists of adding the Y axis leadscrew and the machine table. There is an extra ‘copper nut’ to add to the Y axis nut seat, this is added along with a spring.

The spring adds pressure between the two nuts pushing them against the leadscrew threads to prevent the table from rattling.

3018 Y axis slider
3018 step 2 continued

When clamping the Y axis sliders to the base of the machine table, it is a good idea to set the table square to the frame.

I did this by sliding the table forward and trapping two 1-2-3 blocks between the table and the frame. Then tightening the bolts to lock the table to the sliders.

3018 step 2 square
3018 step 2 complete

Step 3

3018 step 3

Step 3 consists of adding the first Bakelite vertical support. The support is positioned 46.5mm from the inside of the back frame.

This dimension is not critical but when you add the second support it needs to be the same distance.

3018 step 3

If you don’t have any measuring calipers to match the two distances you can find something to hold between the frame and support.

A small wooden dowel cut to length could be used, just set it in the groove of the extrusion and push the support against it while the bolts are tightened. Then repeat with the same dowel on the other side.

3018 step 3 in position

Step 4

3018 step 4

In step 4 you need to add the cross supports and ‘slide rods’ to the vertical support. I didn’t finish tightening the bolts until the other vertical support was added.

The leadscrew can be threaded in after the second vertical support is added. This can be added in step 5.

Step 5

3018 step 5

In this step you add the second vertical support. It is important to position this the same distance away from the rear cross member as the other side. Use calipers or a short dowel as mentioned earlier.

When these are tight, the support bars the spindle slides on can be tightened.

I tightened the right hand bolts with the spindle assembly moved over to the right. This ensures that the bars are set at the correct distance apart.

This was repeated on the left side by sliding the spindle assembly to the left before tightening the left side bolts.

Then the X axis leadscrew can be added and the stepper motor can be bolted to the vertical support.

3018pro cnc machine

Step 6 and Step 7

3018 steps 6 and 7

Step 6 is just sliding the spindle motor into the Z axis assembly. The bolt needs loosening off and the molding needs prying apart. The motor is reassuringly tight in the assembly, even with the bolt loose.

3018 spindle mounted in the Z axis

Step 7 consists of bolting the control board to the back of the horizontal cross braces.

3018 control board mounted

The last step of the build is to attach the cables from the control board to the stepper motors and spindle motor. The manual shows a picture of the board and where each connection is located.

3018 manual control board
3018 cable attachments

The X axis stepper motor is mounted on the vertical support, the Y axis motor is mounted at the back moving the table.

3018 cable wiring
3018 spindle wires
3018 cable ties
3018 tidy cables
3018 tidy cables Z axis
3018 cnc machine completed
Sale
Mini Low Profile Bench Vise Workholding Clamp Work Table for...
Mini Low Profile Bench Vise Workholding Clamp Work Table for...*
  • Use as a holding clamp and work table for CNC engraving machine. The clamp is compatible with FoxAlien 3018-SE, Masuter and 4040-XE engraving machine.
  • The clamp can hold the engraving object by the edges without taking up any engraving area.
  • It holds the object tightly and easy to adjust with screws.
  • Product size: 20x8x4 cm/ 7.87”x3.15”x1.57”; Max. holding length: 13cm/ 5”
  • The vise is made of high-quality aluminum, which is durable and strong enough to stay steady while machine is running.

Testing the 3018 Cnc

Once you have your machine built it will need testing to make sure it operates and moves in the correct directions.

This can quickly be done by plugging in the offline controller to the control board and connecting the power supply.

3018 offline controller plugged into the control board

Powering on the machine will give you some options to choose from on the offline controller screen. The options:

You can use the Y+ and Y- buttons to scroll through the options and the OK/Spindle button to select your option.

3018 offline controller

Choosing the CTRL option will let you test the movements on your machine. The screen displayed will look like the picture below.

3018 ctrl screen

You should now be able to use the controller to move the axes on your machine.

It is important to know which way each axis should move when you press each button so you do not run into the end limits and stall the stepper motor.

The next two pictures show the direction the machine should move when you press the corresponding button on the controller.

3018 x z directions

It is important to note that the Y axis movement refers to the direction the spindle moves, not the table. But because it is the table that is moved by the stepper motor, the table should move in the opposite direction.

This means that when a Y+ axis move is commanded for the spindle, the table will move in the Y- direction, it is the spindle that is moving in the Y+ direction. (I hope that makes sense!)

3018 Y axis movement

To explain it another way, the spindle moves to the top of the table for a Y+ movement.

So when you press an axis movement button the machine will move a ‘step’ amount. This distance is shown in the bottom right hand of the screen. This is specified in millimeters.

3018 step distance

To change the step amount press the Exit/Step button. To have continuous movement toggle through to the largest step amount (10mm) then press and hold the desired axis direction button.

To test the spindle, press the Ok/Spindle button. To change the spindle speed press and hold the Ok button and press either the Z+ or Z- buttons.

The spindle rotation direction should be clockwise when viewed from above.

To exit the control screen press and hold the Exit/Step button.

The remaining screen is the File option, selecting this will show you the list of programs that are stored on the micro Sd card.

file menu

Use the Y+ and Y- buttons to scroll through the list of programs, press the OK button to select and the OK button again to start the machine so it runs the program.

Pressing and holding Exit/Step button will stop the machine.

Cnc 3018 software

Now the software needs to be loaded onto your laptop or PC that you want to use to run your 3018 cnc machine.

The software for my machine came on a USB drive zipped up using a .RAR file extension. I had to download free software called 7-Zip file manager to extract the files.

The USB drive had software for other devices, you only need to download the ‘cnc3-3018pro_EN.RAR’ file.

3018 provided software

Open the ‘software for control the machine(3axis)‘ folder and you will find the sub-folder for the driver. Open that folder and double click the file ‘CH340SER’.

This will install your driver, just follow the prompts and click install.

Next, open up the ‘Grblcontrol(Candle_1.1.7 )’ folder and double click the EXE. file as shown in the picture below.

candle software file for 3018

This will open the GRBL cnc control software. You can right click on the file shown above and create a shortcut,which you can drag onto your desktop.

Grbl candle software

Now you have to determine your machines COM port. To do this you have to open the device manager on your PC and see which com port it is using.

Then you need to choose the corresponding COM port in the Gbrl settings and set the baud rate to 115200 and click OK.

Gbrl com port settings

A very important point to know is that the com port will not show up in your device manager if you are not connected to the machine. The printed instructions fail to mention this.

The machine needs to be powered up and connected to your laptop with the supplied USB cable for the COM port to show up in your device manager.

You can then change to the correct port in the Grbl candle software settings.

As soon as you enter the correct port the machine should be controllable with the Gbrl Candle software. Check out my full review here.

Running G Code on the 3018

If you are new to cnc machining it is important to note that the software provided with this machine will not enable you to create a G Code program.

The Grbl Candle software only sends the commands to the machine using the G Code program you load into it.

logo in Gbrl software

There are some test programs provided on the USB drive but I wanted to use some simple free software to show what can be done by someone learning to use a cnc machine.

So to test the machine I created a new program using Inkscape to create my logo and a browser based program called jscut to produce the G Code.

Hit the link below to read the JSCut Tutorial.

Learn to Create Programs For Your Cnc Machine

Once I had the G Code program done, I ran it using one of the supplied engraving cutters. Unsurprisingly it only cuts a fine line which is difficult to see.

3018 test program

These supplied engraving cutters are a really poor choice to include. It is difficult to mill anything with them that looks good, which could be discouraging for a beginner.

I ran the program again using a 1/16″ ball end cutter, you can see the result in the picture below. It worked well on the lettering but some of the detail was removed on the logo.

milled using a 1/16 ball end cutter

If you need some programs to test your new Cnc machine I have made my ‘Spider’ programs available to download. Click the button below to get the details.

Download Free G Code Files!

Conclusion

How well does 3018 cnc machine work?

It works, I can say that much… I found it really easy to use the Gbrl candle software, I set up the tool, set the datum and it ran when I sent the program to the machine.

This machine is probably about as easy an introduction to cnc machining you can get, at a really affordable price.

Are there any negatives to the 3018 cnc machine?

It vibrates, constantly. I’m sure this is normal for this type of machine.

It vibrates when engraving a piece of plywood with a tiny tool, cutting only .015″ deep. Although it wasn’t as bad when I used a decent ball end cutter.

I have only tried a few simple programs so far, I am going to try more involved projects in the future to see what can be done on this machine.

YouTube video

Do I recommend a beginner buying one of these machines?

Yes, if you are aware of its limitations and want to use it to learn and try some basic projects, it is perfect for this.
It is fun and easy to use, it has a really simple construction and should be straightforward to fix, if and when parts wear out. There are several upgrade parts available. My review of the upgraded spindle can be read here.

Inexpensive and educational are its main selling points.

Sale
Genmitsu CNC 3018-PRO Router Kit GRBL Control 3 Axis Plastic...
Genmitsu CNC 3018-PRO Router Kit GRBL Control 3 Axis Plastic...*
  • New Version: Genmitsu CNC 3018-PRO is an upgraded version of 3018. All components do not need to be positioned, which greatly reduces the difficulty of assembly and improves the working accuracy. The base height is raised to 4cm for better stability. Capable of cutting all types of plastics, soft aluminum, woods, acrylics, PVCs, and PCBs, the Genmitsu can be used on a wide range of projects and materials.
  • Upgraded Power Adapter: UL Approved and out-of-the-box support for the drop in 20,000rpm Spindle, no need to modify G-code to ramp up to full speed.
  • Controller Software: The Genmitsu 3018-PRO uses GRBL, a high-performance open-source software for controlling movement, and runs on Arduino. Its dependability and simplicity make GRBL an industry standard, so there’s no lack of support and resources available when you get stuck. Includes CARVECO Maker CAM Design Software and CANDLE for controlling your machine and running your GCODE design files.
  • Optional Upgraded Parts: Super Size your 3018 CNC to a 3040 by getting a Genmitsu 3040 Y-Axis Extension Kit (B08P2S3JWP). The 3040 Aluminum Spoilboard (B08VNLP24C) and 3040 MDF Spoilboard (B08WZ8RV3Y) for this extension kit are also available to buy.
  • Support: Assembly Instructions and User Guide could be found at the Product Guides and Documents Section below. If you get stuck, check out the SainSmart Resource Center (see at User Guide) or contact us with any questions that arise.
Sours: https://cncphilosophy.com/3018-cnc/
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