Inventables Community Forum

No Black Dot

When prepping my file and cutting I never saw the black dot at work zero, or anywhere. It ended up cutting a little off centre.

I am using a 3018 DIY machine. I turned on my machine, edited my file a bit, pressed carve, manually jogged the machine to the start position i wanted. Everything was measured properly but for some reason it cut off centre. I am not sure if this was related to my not seeing the black dot at 0,0.

I am very new so any help is appreciated!


Did you ‘home’ your machine first? Homing establishes the starting point/reference, usually in the lower left corner, for where everything else is calculated from.

Thanks Traxxtar

I don’t believe I did this, but i don’t think it asked me. Can this be done manually when highlighting the shape and in the icon that shows bottom let corner manually putting X and Y to 0?

Can you recommend a step by step for easiest way to do this? I am using a laptop and don’t have an offline controller or anything. Do I always have to set the machine up first and plug in/turn on before starting a new project? I have been doing it on the computer first and then plugging in setting up machine and turning on.

CNC machines need to be ‘homed’ so they have a reference to start from. This is done by having homing switches installed and then you run the homing sequence. After the machine is homed, it then knows exactly where the spindle bit is located and can cut/carve from that point as a reference point since it then knows exactly the location of X/Y/Z.

If you’re using Easel, you can design from any computer and then connect to your machine later to carve. You can also design using other programs and connect/carve when ready.

Is it possible to do this without installing homing switches? Is that something I need to buy that comes separately?

You don’t need homing switches unless you need to have a repeatable position (really useful).

How and where did you set zero? How far off is the actual carve? In what directions?

The more detail you provide, the easier it’ll be to tell you where it went wrong. Homing switches don’t make a difference in this case.

i manually jogged the machine to the bottom left corner of my material and in settings hit G92 to manually set x and y to 0
the cut came out a 1/2 inch higher and 1/2 inch to the right of where i thought it would be

Are the left and bottom of your design at exactly zero for X & Y? Also, remember that the Zero for X & Y is at the center of the bit, so take that into consideration as well.


Brandon Parker

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Directly over the corner, with the bit centered on the corner?

yes it’s a really small bit only 0.1mm.
i think it has something to do with my material not being in the bottom left corner of my table.
i use clamps so have the piece of material closer to the middle of my board.

i thought none of this matters as long as when i go though the sequence after pressing carve i jog the machine to the lower left corner of the material?

is this what setting work zero is? i am a bit confused with setting work zero and homing. i never receive any promts to home the machine. i dont have any limit switches or z probe or anything like that.

Hi Brandon
Sorry how do i know if the bottom of the design is at zero?
i have a word that is centered in the middle of the piece of wood and i jog the machine down to bottom left corner of material.
it seems to be moving to the area it should generally but it’s just off by a half inch

Homing doesn’t matter if you don’t have the switches installed. Don’t worry about that.
The only thing you need to be 100% sure if is that your work zero in your CAD/CAM software is the same location as what you actually set on the workpiece.
Can you share any files? What software are you using? How big, exactly, is your stock?
How are you measuring the half inch?
Aside from being offset a half inch, are the dimensions of your work accurate?