Using Easel like it is a DRO?

Has anyone used Easel to position their X-Carve to a precise point that is described numerically as their “Work Zero”? Then set a fixture onto the work surface to produce repeated parts which would later be assembles together?

Any tutorials you have seen that show this method?

Yes, I have looked at a few YouTube videos and they are all concerned with repeatability for the sake of mass production, but none talk about precision regarding interchangeable parts that must be assembled together. Also, I plan not to cut the outer perimeter or ‘profile’ but use the raw stock outer dimensions as my baseline. So, everything that is machined is in relation to the stock.

@JohnCHansen, I do it often, set the zero point to either front left or to center, then when I bring the file into my machine, I use the MDI to type in the coordinates that i want to use (center or front left) send the router to that place then set those coordinates as the zero point. Your machine may need different instructions but for me the code is
G0 X123 Y321(enter) moves spindle
X0 Y0 sets the new location as zero. Hope I got that line right, I usually just use the touch screen to set X0 Y0 as zero.

This will do a rapid XY move to X123 Y321 relative to your work zero. This is not an absolute machine position.

Send the machine to your current XY work zero.

I don’t think that’s what @JohnCHansen is asking for, but I’m not entirely sure what he is asking. John, do you want to change your work zero from piece to piece or keep it the same.
In my opinion, Inventables made this confusing for many people by referring to work zero as “Home”.

I give the G0 X123 Y123 to take to a position that I use as the center of a carve,
Then I give the command X0 Y0 to set that location as the “home” for this carve.
I also have a square screwed onto my spoilboard & I could do the same thing just us G0 X27 Y49 then give the X0 Y0 command to make that the home.
Today I ran 3 jobs using the G0 X123 Y 321 and once I had set this as work zero only had to probe for tool length, one of the carves was two sided the other two were one sided & had a tool change.
Am doing personalized trivets, each the same size, each using two bolts threaded into the spoilboard, so work center stays the same all day.
Any time you would like to drop by feel free, beer or whisky on me, your knowledge is stellar, thank you.

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X0 Y0 is a MOVE TO X0 Y0.
G10 L20 X0 Y0 will SET the current location as X0 Y0.

If you move to X123 Y123 and set that location as your work zero, then move to X50 Y50, you’re moving further right and back. Every time you change that work zero (Easel’s “Home” position), you lose the last one.

I think what you guys might want are absolute MACHINE positions. These are based on your homing switches and never change, regardless of where your current zeros are set.
This post and thread might be of interest.

Thanks! On my way.

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What I feel would work best for me would be a repeatable machine address that may be typed in when beginning a new session after someone else (or several other people) have run their projects. I am using the X-Carve at a Makers Space.
Note, that I am told that the machine in question does not have homing switches. (It’s an old second hand machine). Is it simple to add homing switches and wiring? Or does that depend on the controller?

Without homing switches, you don’t have any absolute reference. Until you add homing switches, your best need would be hardware stops you can pull the machine against when you turn it on.

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@NeilFerreri1 'ang on 'ang on my machine does not have homing switches, it uses stall homing.
@JohnCHansen After you home the machine, If you know where you want to have the machine get to, use the command
G0 X123 Y321, but put in your own values for X & Y, also make sure your spindle is high enough to clear any clamps before you enter the line
John if you need a set of switches, 1) they are cheap, 2) I think I have a set if your controller will accept them let me know & I will mail them to you, I will go and look in a few mins.

Bring the kids we built an electric trike just for taking the grandkids for rides, even has a sunbrella for A/C.

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@JohnCHansen I have 5 micro switches you can have with wire leads, PM me an address & I will mail them,

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John, I was a CNC Lathe and Mill, Aerospace Machinist for 23 years. I can tell you that the x carve is not going to repeat worth a crap. You will be lucky to repeat within 0.0200
My Machine will not home, my Y1 and Y2 equaliy I have to check and adjust it before every cycle. It homes about 3mm off on Y2 If the machine can’t home its self correctly you can’t count on it to opperate witth any pression.
Machine looks nice but that is where it ends. I would not reccomend this to anyone. Good Luck

Hello Jon, I appreciate your detailed reply. The X-carve machine that I have available is missing the X and Y micro switches. And if I had them and could come even close to 0.020 repeatability, that would be faster than aligning the Work Home by eyeball to a point on the stock before I begin each job. I have designed the parts to be made in wood and they would be very tolerant of precision of 0.020, and if I could zero the machine between each job to that tolerance, I would be miles ahead of where I am without the ability to automatically find a Machine Home.
And in the end, I have no more than six of each part, so I will just push through the task of setting up the machine manually for each of the five unique parts for thirty parts in all.

Where do you go to input those commands in? I cant find the answer for that.

How are you able to input those commands. I cant seem to figure it out.

@TylerDesper I too have never used direct input, so I guess I better learn how that is done.
@NeilFerreri1 I may try your suggestion to establish a trusted physical starting point to use until we add the homing micro switches.

@JohnCHansen My machine is a Onefinity & the firmware allows the user to enter a line of Gcode directly into the machine. Have no Idea what your machine may allow. As I mentioned I have 5 new/unused limit switches with wire leads on them, they are just sitting in a drawer. I got them when I broke a switch on my previous machine So recognizing that they are fragile I got a set. As I recall you need two each for the X & Y and one for the Z.If you do need six I can do that, was thinking I might want to use them on a machine someday, but have been giving away the machines I built in the past so new machines are not on the radar.

Press Ctrl+Shift+D to access the Machine Inspector Page via Shortcut Keys…
here you will find the “console” where manual commands can be sent to the cnc within Easel.

You still have the limit switches available. Hey would help out a lot in repeatability.
Lyle at

@LyleSteimel1 , John asked for them a couple of days ago, sorry, but they are not expensive. Less that $20 for a set. google them here.
sainsmart genmitsu cnc 3018 limit switches

AWESOME thanks so much