Running your X carve off of a Raspberry Pi

I had seen some threads and posts about this and it got me wondering about how difficult this could be. I thought I’d create a thread about it in case somebody else is interested. There are a few videos on the internet talking about this, but one in particular was really helpful. Which I will link below. Many of these folks blow through the basics and quite frankly, I don’t know anything about Linux operating systems. This video in particular was slow and methodical and I am happy to report that my Xcarve runs on the Pi now.

To get started I ordered a Canakit Raspberry Pi 3, an HTML cable, a monitor that connected to HTML and a micro SD card or two, along with an adapter to USB. I ended up getting a basic kit which contained the Pi board a case, and power supply, a couple heat sinks, and a quick start guide.

The first thing I did was follow along the quick start guide which shows how to get the software installed. That was easy enough. When my monitor arrived, I hooked it up and low and behold I had a simple computer system going.

I figured I’d download Java and UGS. I had been using UGS on the laptop with great success. If you go to UGS downloads, you should see a Linux Raspberry pi version. Rasp 3 has wifi capabilities and has a search engine to get to the software. Then it is just a matter of downloading it.

This video then takes you through all the steps to get it running on your Pi.

Homemade CNC Router Part 8: Installing UGS On A Raspberry PI (Arduino CNC Router) - YouTube

I was used to the Classic version of UGS. This platform version has a few more bells and whistles to it, but has been around for a few years. Two things don’t work yet. I can’t get the machine to jog through the arrow keys on the keyboard, which the classic version allowed me to do. You have to use the jog controls on the screen with your mouse.

The other thing that doesn’t work for me yet is the visualizer. I guess from reading about UGS and PI, that it is possible, but it’s not critical to me as I check my Gcode on Mach3 anyway.

So to conclude, the Raspberry pi can run your X controller pretty easily, which is a nice alternative to having the laptop in there collecting all those chips. It certainly helps to have UGS knowledge before you start, but not impossible to just jump into it.