Troubleshooting help needed

I recently moved house, and screwed the waste board of my 1000mm X Carve to the base of its enclosure cabinet to ensure it wouldn’t bang around. I put an old disposable drill bit in the collet and drilled that down into the waste board to stop the spindle from moving during the move.

When I the truck arrived at my new place I saw they had put the enclosure onto its back. When I tested it the Z axis was fine, the X axis was smooth, but Y1 and y2 juddered badly, and the motors looked like they were out of sync with each other. If the motors are unlocked, I can (slowly) move the spindle forward and backward, but the metal bar that connects the y1 and y2 motors can easily swing out of square.

Does this issue sound familiar to anyone? Is it a belt tension issue? Or is it possible the aluminium tracks have been bent? I’m not sure what to try to get it back to running smoothly, any suggestions would be really appreciated.

Sounds like the machine might be out of square, since x only has one motor it wouldn’t exhibit significant issues but the Y motors would be struggling to move the X axis beam at an angle that isn’t 90’ to each Y rail

You might want to pull the waste board and make sure all the rails are square then reattach the waste board…

1 Like

Pulley set screws on Y axis if you have them. Otherwise, belt tension could do it as well. Look for loose Vwheels.

1 Like

Sounds to me like a loose wire on one of the motors.


FWIW, the standard side plates on the Y flex quite a bit with the motors off, if that’s what you mean by unlocked, but are rigid when the motors are locked. Or did you mean $X unlocked? Belt tension, set screws on the motor or toothed pulleys or loose V wheels likely per Justin’s response otherwise. Locking by the spindle would allow the Y to move at either end and perhaps, with sufficient bumping during transport, maybe twist the end plates. Just a thought.

1 Like

I agree with @DavidAnnetta, sounds like a loose wire on one or both of your Y stepper motors. A video would help

1 Like

I will shoot a quick video tomorrow when I can get to the workshop, and demonstrate the ‘juddery’ motion.

I tried to film the video today to demonstrate the stuttering travel of the Y axis, but it has inexplicably healed itself!

The only problem now is the alignment is off a little between the x and Y axes. This is usually a belt tension issue is it not?

This is meant to be a square and a circle, all measurements are in mm.

Still check your wire the gremlin will show up.
Ok next problem, is your machine square? Measure it. Also set the gantry or two inches from the front on both side. Make sure your belts at tight. And finally calibrate it again.

Do you square your Y axis before power up? It looks slightly tilted like your Y axis isn’t squared.

It could also be uneven belt tension.

1 Like

Definitely track down the bad connection before it comes back in the middle of a carving and you ruin the piece.
As for the photo, there are many things that could cause it.

I would check the following in this order

Is your machine squared?
are there loose V-wheels?
Check your Belt tension.

Just out of curiosity, what size was the square supposed to be? You may need to adjust your steps aswell.

1 Like

Justin, how do I square the Y axis?

There’s a few ways but the theory is the same.

You take 2 equal length spacers and put them against the Y end plates and with power off, you pull the Y axis against the spacers, turn on power then remove the spacers.

I made a jig to set mine. Place it on there, power on, then remove it.

1 Like

Gotcha… I’ll try that out for sure. Thanks for the tip!