X-Axis is not square

Okay so I’ve had my X-Carve for almost a year now and over all it’s been working great. I’ve had a few issues, mistakes, accidents and ruined carves due to loose material or broken belts, etc…

My carves recently have started not looking as clean as they used to. Lines aren’t straight and no where near as clean as they used to be. And yes, I’m using sharp bits and the proper feed speeds. Today I decided to do an overhaul on my machine. Checked all the screws, (found a few loose and even a couple that had completely backed out and fell on the table), adjusted all the belt tensions, cleaned all the rollers and rails, tightened a couple guide rollers, etc… Everything on the machine looks good.

Here’s my issue…when I place the router bit at the zero position on a work piece and then move the bit 10" up on the Y-Axis, the router bit has moved approximately 1/8" to 1/4" left on the X-axis. I checked the square on my work piece, and the spacing of the left and right side rails of the machine. All measurements are good. So I’m a little confused as to why I’m getting the X-axis discrepancy.

Does anyone have any suggestions?

Thanks!

Are you squaring the x axis before you turn on the x controller? The axis will move a bit before the motors lock into position. Also check across the opposite corners of your Y rails to make sure the measurement is the same. They should be.

I saw one guy here made blocks to set the axis square from the front riser blocks. He puts the blocks in, adjusts the x axis to the wooden blocks, and then turns on the X controller. He removes the blocks and everything is ready to go.

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I run a homing sequence before every carve, shouldn’t that be good enough to square up the X-axis to the Y? I think a couple times, after running a machine homing, the left side of the gantry was full forward and the right side was about 1/4” away from the physical stop. So I unplugged the left motor and used the computer to bring the x-axis forward until the right side hit the stop also and then plugged the left motor back in. I wish there was setting in Easel to control the left and right Y-axis motors independent of each other for this reason.

Homing doesn’t guarantee the squareness, it just puts the router in a set position from the switches. I’d square it up manually, then home it. As long as the motors have current flowing to them, the gantry should stay square.

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One easy way to quickly square the X-Axis prior to turning the machine on is to slowly push it all the way back until both sides bottom out against the back. Then while holding it there, turn the controller on and let go after you hear the controller start the holding current for the motors. Then, home the machine normally. If your machine itself is square, the X-Axis should then be square and remain so unless you move it or crash the machine.

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Brandon Parker

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This is what I recall seeing.

MakerFX How-to: Squaring the X-Carve CNC Router at startup - YouTube

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