# How do you locate an exact spot on the work area?

I suppose I should know this…say your looking at the work clamped on the wasteboard.lets say toward the middle…and you want the bit to travel to the board move in 3 inches on that board and start to cut? how do you find an exact spot with any accuracy?I feel I’m working blind…is there a way to map the work area in a simple way? Do alot of air cutting trying to hit a certain starting point…yes I’m new at this…any help would be appreciated.

The use of a “zero” is what you’re looking for. Are you using Easel?

You just move the machine to your starting point and then set X and Y to zero.

Yes in easel ok starting at xy zero at the home position…Ok I’m getting the picture now…thanks

That fails 100% of the time for me. I do that expecting where I set X,Y,Z zero is where it starts from.

I have discovered that Easel uses machine zero as start position. That means that even though you set XY zero at the corner of the workplace it will never use it as such.
Say you want a 10x10 work area and you place 1 7x7 blank and set XY zero at the lower left corner.
Push go and it will start way off the mark 100% of the time.
It ignores actual xy zero.
I just found the puzzle maker and thought ‘what a great idea’ and proceed to use it. Printed a picture, glued it to a 7X7 piece of 1/16 birch ply. Taped it to a waste board, set the xyz zero at the corner of the picture.
First corner piece was just about center of the 7X7 work area. Ruined the work.
So my question is why bother setting XY zero if the Easel ignores it?

Home (machine home) is so that the XC knows where it is. Now set a G90 for absolute and xy zero at the work corner. That should be where all coordinates are referenced from, not machine zero.
It should now treat that as where all measurements are taken from not the machine home.
It may be that our terms are no the same so I will define mine.
I ‘home the XC’ with homing switches thus letting the XC know where it is in relation to itself.
Then I MDI the XC to where XYZ zero will be, set that as zero. Now I load the program (either from Easel or UGS) and push go.
The result, more often than not, is disaster. It cannot seem to see where xyz zero is.
Home is for reference only so the machine knows where it is.
One can unlock the axis without homing and set xyz zero but caution should be used doing so.

I use the center of the work piece as my 0,0,0 point. No other figuring to do! I move my bit to the center, which I’ve marked on the material or on a piece of tape. Then, I raise the bit, use my Z-zero plate to set the Z0 exactly, and press GO.

Another thread here discusses moving your drawing in Easel to be centered on the lower left 0,0 point. This means that 3/4 of your drawing is off the drawing grid, but when you then start cutting at the center of your work piece, it carves the entire drawing.

Here’s the thread: Starting from center

Ok, I have figured it out one more time, maybe this time it will take.
It is a matter of terminology, work area means work piece not the area of what your machine can handle.
So if I have a 7x7 workpiece then that is what I define as work area. Then when I set xy zero it uses that as point of origin.
I am going to make a big sign and paste it so I see it when creating projects.
Guess I am getting old.

Hi all, any clearer advice on this topic? My carve stopped halfway through and don’t want everything to be mis-aligned when I get it going again. I’d like to place the bit inside one of the holes and set that as the new zero and move the entire drawing so that that is true… I think that should work well…thoughts?

These videos may help

You simply cannot beat the triquetra for zeroing and or repeat-ability.

If the hole is not much larger than your endmill and you don’t need .001" precision, I think you should be ok.

Thanks Neil! It worked well but not perfect as you predicted. Maybe 3 thou off.

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yes