Grbl vs Easel - basics?

This might be a dumb question, but I’m new to inventables/x-carve and I’m trying to figure out what to do with grbl/what it is. I went through the instructions on the sight and didn’t see anything about it, and I’m now working on configuring the machine with Easel and I’ve seen grbl mentioned in the troubleshooting category a lot. Do I need to download grbl from github?

A good description of what Grbl is can be found at its Github repo description here.

Not dumb at all. Being very much a beginner myself, I’m having somewhat of the same issue.

Isn’t GRBL on the G-Shield? If so, then it is already installed on the bit of hardware you plugged into the Arduino.

The problem with GRBL is the same as one of its strengths. GRBL is Open Source. This is both Good, and Bad.

I love Open Source as a concept. It has lots of pluses. The down side is that Open Source projects tend to not be… um… (‘documented’ is the wrong word) not explained well for beginners. Instructions tend to be laid out in language better suited for one techy talking to another.

Case in point: The “good” description link to Github referenced above. I cannot dispute the accuracy of the site, because I do not understand very much of what it is trying to tell me. This makes the description “bad” (for me) even though it may be perfectly correct.

As stated above, GRBL is the bit of code that translates the G-Code for the Arduino.

Easel sends G-Code, GRBL translates it to something the Arduino can understand, and the Arduino controls the stepper motors on your X-Carve. (somebody jump in if this is not correct)

Follow the instructions as best you can and ask plenty of questions. You are not alone.


No. Grbl resides in the Arduino. The gShield is nothing more than stepper motor driver circuits (still needed of course).

Although not an introduction to grbl, this page gives you information about the parameters that the user can set which will give you some information to help you understand what grbl does.

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[quote=“LarryM, post:6, topic:25020, full:true”]

[quote=“SterlingRanne, post:5, topic:25020”]
Isn’t GRBL on the G-Shield?

No. Grbl resides in the Arduino. The gShield is nothing more than stepper motor driver circuits (still needed of course).[/quote]

Thank you. To the OP’s question: My understanding is that GRBL comes pre-installed. Unless there is an issue where it becomes deleted, damaged, or requires update, nothing need be downloaded. Correct?