Total newbie with new to me primo MPCNC project

I am brand new to this so looking forward to learning from all of you experts out there. The only other thing that I have played with is a small 3018 CNC that I made a few signs on. I bought a mostly complete kit that was set up with a kit from v1 Engineering or so I am told. The size is about 3ft x 2ft. It has a printed case for the LCD screen. There was no spindle or mount with this one but I had a new 52MM spindle that I had to upgrade my 3018 with so I printed a mount that should work with that one.

The MPCNC seems to have a lot of play in it. When I try to move it around without having my hand directly in the center I find that it gets cocked at an angle. It is about 6" high as well. I have not hooked it up to a computer yet but the previous owner tried to cut something out for me without a good result yet. He did not have much time on it. He made covers that go over the stepper motors that allow you to just plug in a cable to one end in order to connect the steppers. There are limit switches on both x-axis and one of the Y-axis. I do have a couple of more limit switches to go on the other y-axis and the z-axis.

1 Like

My goal with this thing is to be able to do some light aluminum machining. I have to add in the emergency stop you see in the last picture. I do not need it to be this big or tall. What are your first suggestions???

1 Like

Shorten the feet to min length, make it half the size. :stuck_out_tongue:

These two parameter are incompatible with each other. Particularly since it looks like the Z axis on your is much higher than the minimum. My Primo is about the same size right now, and my plans are to cut to long axis to approximately half, at which time I believe that aluminum machining may be more feasible. I’m also using structural steel tubing, and have mine configured for the lowest possible Z axis.

For suggestions:

  1. Make it smaller. 2’ square work area as a maximum, and maybe 24"X18" is a good size for working on aluminum. When you do this, make sure that the tubes come all the way to the outside corners (I see that they are recessed in from the edges, you want as much clamping surface as you can for the tubes.)

  2. Make it shorter. The further down go go from the gantry, the less rigid the Primo is. Making the gantry stand tall means that it is least stable when cutting down to the spoilboard. The extra height can be fine if you put something under the projects so that they are as high as possible when you cut them. This will allow you to put taller material into the machine if you aren’t trying to cut through it. If you mean to be doing things like surfacing thick stock, or carving on the top surface of things, this can be OK, but for most of us, it’s unnecessary.

You can make some adjustments to how the machine rests by adjusting the bolt tension on the trucks. Keep in mind that “tight” in this case is much less torque than you would ordinarily think. This is a super light touch. Aside from that, when in use, the belts on either side will keep the machine square, so long as it starts square. The dual end stops should take care of that when you home it.


ok possibly a stupid question but I have had some experience with Easil and Candle with my 3018 CNC but wondering if I can use that with Marlin?

I don’t know for sure, but all you need for most programs is the right post processor.

The last time I checked, Easel code will run unmodified. See this post. You are limited in how you set up your jobs. I’ve seen scripts referenced on this forum that add functionality to Easel scripts.

I doubt Candle will work since it appears to be GRBL specific. Repetier-Host is the suggested tool for g-code sending (or you can run the job off a SD card).

1 Like

You can still cut aluminum with a larger build, it’s just not recommended.

1 Like