I’m new to the X-Carve community and haven’t pulled the trigger on a machine yet. I’m looking for feedback on things you would or wouldn’t purchase when ordering your X-Carve and why. I’m leaning toward the 1000mm. Should I just start out with Easel until I’m proficient or go ahead and spend the money on Easel Pro? Any help, suggestions, advice is appreciated.
Stick with Easel until you’re comfortable with it.
I bought V carve desktop along with my machine because I refuse to be tied to the so-called “cloud” or the internet.
I want 100% control over my data.
The software is very intuitive and I have never looked back.
But,to each their own.
Lots have changed since I bought mine but I bought VCarve Pro with mine and have never looked back. Easel is good to calibrate your CNC and do quick carves but I agree with what JanVanderlinden said.
Easel is free, Easel Pro is free for 4 days per month, so without any additional cost you have a complete program ready to use. Which other programs that may work for you depend entirely on inteded use and which platform you are on (Win/Mac)
Like everyone is saying Easel is a great tool to get started. But if you are serious about making great designs buy Vcarve Desktop today (you can upgrade to Pro later). The Xcarve is a very capable machine and can do amazing things, but without powerful design software the entire process of designing and carving can be very frustrating.
Save yourself months of that frustration and get the right tools for the job. I know that $349 sounds like a lot of money, but trust me, you will be able to make products that will pay you back in less than 3 months without even trying. I never intended to sell what I made, but just by making things and giving them away free to friends and family I received orders for more stuff than I could make in my spare time. So think of buying the software as an investment that will pay for itself many times over.
Next, study the forum. There is so much to learn. The forum is a great source. The above suggestions are excellent
Start messing in Easel now - don’t wait for the machine. Start messing with VCarve Desktop, now. Phillip is right, read the forum.
Regarding #2, if they are doing free shipping (which I believe is now) then go ahead and buy the wasteboard, but learn how to make one from scratch in case you decide to replace it later.
I bought my machine when there was no free shipping so I make my own wasteboard, but since I was doing it I made a spare at the same time just in case I’d ever needed one - it’s still sitting there.
Everything that @AngusMcleod said.
T-track lined bed rather than the wasteboard from Inventables.
Also, I’d have picked up the Makita over the Dewalt router for the RPM range.
There’s various threads regarding the two (pros/cons)
Probably would have got the SuckIt dust boot rather than the Inventables option.
Agreed - the waste board looks nice but I can get almost 3 full 4’x8’ sheets of 3/4 MDF for that. The Inventable Waste board looks dope with the printed grid, but once you need to “skim” the waste board to get things perfectly flat that goes away. Or if your machine isn’t perfectly square to the waste board, the grid doesn’t do anything anyways.
understood. I was speaking overall in general.
You nailed everything that relates to the Inventables configurator.
I was going a bit past that since it still applies to the ‘hindsight’ topic.
Yeah it’s expensive compared to the cost of bare MDF. I personally have a view that if it’s a consumable I’d rather buy as close to the raw material as possible that I can replace, so I would lean on the side of not getting it. But if I was just starting out, shipping wasn’t a factor, and I didn’t already know I’d mostly use double sided tape to fasten everything down, then thinking of the time/hassle of drilling all those holes and the edge mounting slots would probably cause me to get the wasteboard.
Any thoughts on whether the Z-Probe and Homing switch would be worth adding to my purchase or is this something that isn’t worth the trouble? Thanks for all the input thus far.
Go for both if you can, otherwise choose the homing switches.
Homing switches have saved a couple of projects of mine, Z-probe can be “diy´d” on the spot, or manual methods used to establish Z.
My two cents worth is get the probe if you have to chose
@DeanMoore1 My cents:
- I haven’t used the homing switches since initial machine setup/testing
- I like and use the wiring configuration from the Inventables Z-Probe kit
- I love and use the Triquetra Touch Plate and Tool Box. This will get your X = 0, Y = 0, Z = 0 accurately (https://triquetra-cnc.com/product/triquetra-p3-auto-zero-touch-plate-triquetra-tool-box/)
(The plug from the Inventables Z-Probe Puck plugs right into the Triquetra 3 axis Touch Plate)
Regarding the waste board, even with free shipping I’d be a little leery of ordering it from Inventables. Several reasons, first, it is heavy and I’ve read several times that they get damaged in shipping, which is understandable. Secondly they will charge $130 for one and you can get the same 3/4" MDF from Home Depot or Lowe’s for 1/10th the price. Building one is simple, especially if you’re using the tape method as Steve mentioned above. I decided to make my own waste board and use the money saved to upgrade to a beefier belting system.
With homing switched you can use soft limits, G28/G30 parking spaces etc.