How do you set xy zero

So brand new to Inventables and Easel. My question is how do you set the xy axis to zero? Does where you set the material matter when setting them to zero? Do you have to home the machine every time? I had to change a bit today because the rough out didn’t finish the carve and when I did, I accidently jogged the machine an inch to the right and wrecked my carve. Any help would be appreciated.

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The x and y zero are set when you click carve and begin the sequence to setup the carve…

In the design screen the x,y origin is always the lower left, where 0 and 0 meet


I guess my question was poorly constructed. What is the proper spot to place the material on the waste board to set the x and Y to zero? Is that spot going to be the same on all future carves. I’ve seen demos with waste boards marked out with a lines showing an x and Y axis. Is that a helpful way to set up material before you hit the carve button? Or is there a better way to always place the material in the right spot?

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You can set your X, Y zero at any point you’re comfortable at. that’s depending on the size of your project.

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Ken said it accurately, you can place the material wherever you like on the wasteboard.

The old version Xcarve included a wasteboard with printed lines, the main issue that many users experienced when they try to use them for the first few times is that unless the user specifically aligns the wasteboard lines to the movement of the X and Y axises, than the lines are basically useless. HOWEVER once the lines are perfectly parallel to the movement of the cnc, than the lines can be a good reference for aligning a board to the X or Y axis.

IF you want something like that and your wasteboard does not have it than you can use a V bit to carve a reference line (or lines, but IMO only one is needed) into the wasteboard and sue that as a reference, and since it was carved with the cnc you’ll know it’s perfectly aligned… OR you could get a sharpie holder for the CNC and draw the line(s) with that :slight_smile:

As for where exactly on the wasteboard the workpiece is placed, that’s up to you since you’ll be setting the work zeros based on the location of the workpiece.

Many users will use a corner fence and reference the workpiece against that.


As an even more advanced technique There is also a way to save this location as a reference point so that X,Y zeros are always the same, but it’s not the easiest to set and use within Easel, it required manually typing gcode commands before each carve…

Get yourself a Triquetra touch plate and you will never look back.
Very accurate and repeatable.

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I second the recommendation of the Triquetra.

I also feel like inventables should include this type of touch plate esp with the xcarve pro.

They would need to modify easel to support an xyz probe without triquetras google chrome extension and then any brand could be used within easel, even this $42 plate could be used, or one could cnc their own from an aluminum block for a bit cheaper… XYZ Touch Probe Precise Plug and Play GRBL Mach3 Tool Sensor for CNC Machine Kit | eBay

but if you want to use one with your XCP without paying for the triquetra software package you could get a xyz probe and use openbuilds control to send the gcode file to the XCP and then any xyz probe will work in leiu of the stock z probe. :man_shrugging: Best CNC Software is OPENBUILDS CONTROL - Cool Features - YouTube

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Seth— so I am fairly technically savvy overall but also relatively new to deep CNC settings and configurations… so apologies in advanced…

If I use the openbuilds control software (even tho I am mac-based) that will have no problem connecting to the xcp controller since it’s using the same grbl software?

And once I set the perimeters in the OB control software it sets those config variables accordingly so if I set the home or origin in OBC then when I hit go to home or whatever in easel it will go to what I set in OBC?

I have had a lot of issues with my limit switches dying on me so I usually set the x,y zeros manually — which limits me quite a bit on doing roughing and detailed or more carves since it doesn’t really do well when I click “use last” in easel. So trying to find a way to get around using homing in easel since the limit switches seem to die on me.

Definitely would like to use a xyz probe since that would save me so much time since I very painstakingly set my x,y manually and since I am so anal about accuracy—it takes quite some time—so any true time savings would be great.

(I have a few fences for pieces and I know that if I go all the way to the left on x axis that it’s 5x1in jogs over, etc)

Thanks for your help //g

Correct, one new caveat though is that for some odd reason inventables last XCP firmware update included changing the baud rate to 5,600 rather than 115,200 and openbuilds doesn’t work with the slower baud rate, so that would need to be corrected if you’ve installed the most recent firmware to the cnc.

You’d control the cnc through one or the other program, not bouncing between them. You’d download the gcode file from easel & user OBC to set origin and send the carve from there, no longer using easel to control the cnc at all, simply using it to do the design and setup toolpaths and save gcode.

I guess you wouldn’t be able to follow the “inventables approved” bit swap method for XCP without working homing switches and that is the root cause of your current troubles.

I’ve seen reports of the xcp limit switch brackets bending. So you might want to work with tech support to fix this issue and get working switches.

However on my cnc (not an XCP, but still a 4ftx4ft with 1.5kw spindle which operates identicaly to the xcp) , i don’t follow the official method, i don’t use homing switches either, instead i make sure $1 is set to 255 and this setting keeps my steppers locked anytime the cnc is powered on and holds perfect position during the bit swap. If your $1 setting is set differently than this is probably why the cnc is moving in you between bits…

Thanks again //g

Yep, no need to use easel as the sender if the gcode is from elsewhere, i use f360 sometimes as well, and i go straight to OBC… however easel can be very quick for certain designs, so ill design in easel and then export the gocde and use OBC as the sender in that scenario as well :laughing:

ONLY and i do mean ONLY because the “Safety Manual” says so… its a safety concern that the spindle could somehow turn itself on while someone is changing the bit and their lawyers likely made sure that line was in there, with the standard xcarve they supply a router which has its own set of instructions for swapping bits which include unplugging the router, but ppl rarely do that as well.

I dont unplug my cnc in my setup, however, since the cnc board and the vfd (which controls the spindle) are not wired together i could unplug just the VFD if i wanted, but they dont give you this option with the XCP.

Well because i dont use the limit switches, i disabled homing by adjusting a grbl setting $22 is the home option, so ive set it to 0, disabling the homing function.
& i also dont click and “go to home” buttons… i might send the cnc to “origin” which is the x,y, z work zero (where ive set zeros of the workpiece) but with a routine down there really isnt chance ov doing anything to crash the cnc.

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