No worries Neil.
I spent a good chunk of the weekend working on this project, and learned a lot about gcode in the process. I used CNCjs - and I must say it’s fantastic. I particularly enjoyed being able to manually enter gcode through the console. It made re-calibrating my steppers much easier as well.
Rather than setting up any offsets in CNCjs, I simply opted to move the first Z command (nested in an XYZ combo) in my file to a G1Z command one line above it. This made it so the spindle retracted prior to moving to the XY starting location.
My Fusion 360 files were setup properly, so CNCjs properly recognized my XYZ zero and where the stock was located - it just still tried to do the first XYZ move in one go (causing a crash), rather than Z first - then XY. Was a pretty easy fix overall.
This was my first time doing 2 sided machining and it didn’t go so well at first. Somehow each side was a 1/16 or so off despite using dowel pins and my jig. In the end I set my zero to the center of the pockets I machined (so I could reference that geometry instead of my jig). That seemed to work much better.I fixed the 1/16 offset afterward by machining a simple contour and using it as a jig on my table router with a flushing bit.
If I end up making another I’ll know how to make it work better in the future.
I really appreciate your help!