I wanted to share some of my my machine setup that has really made everything very convenient for operating the machine.
I bought a cheap Harbor Freight metal cart that fits my Shapeoko 2 (soon to become a X-Carve hybrid. Thanks, Black Friday Sale). I wanted to have everything on a single cart that rolls. The Shapeoko itself sits on top, but there is space underneath to unplug and stow it if I want to use the top of the cart for something else.
I found the control panel really helped speed things along. It has:
- Emergency stop
- DC spindle power control potentiometer
- X,Y, Z axis plugs
- GRBL Start/resume, pause, and reset buttons
- LED power indicator light
- USB plug
- Aux switches that control vacuum - a dumpster rescued and chopped up dirty devil that lives on the bottom shelf
- Two other Aux switches that will hopefully control later upgrades
The front cart panel also has an arduino spindle tachomter a la http://www.circuitstoday.com/tachometer-using-arduino
and a single plug and power switch, so everything can be powered up and down together.
Since the cart is metal, I just use ceramic magnets to hold wrenches for changing endmills and clamping work pieces.