Yet another new X-carve owner - Feedback on build process

I just put my X-Carve 500mm together this past weekend, after spreading the assembly process of each of the sub-assemblies over a few evenings.

Read through most of the instructions once ahead of time, while awaiting shipment. This helped me a lot, with kinda knowing what to expect next, during the assembly process.

I must say, the kit was very well and thoughtfully packaged, and all boxes arrived without any damage (thankfully).

Few thoughts on how things went:

A general comment, it appears that the instructions are very good at the beginning (and for more than 50% of the build process), but once you get to around the sideboard and electrical (especially the drag-chain) assembly, the details start to get a little sparse, and the pictures do not really always match the written instructions.

When assembling the X-Controller, there are 2 screws that go in the sides of the enclosure that stops the circuit board when pushed from the back. This step isn’t mentioned at all, and if you miss it, the board will slide in when you are trying to plug in the stepper motor wire terminal-blocks.

During the wiring I noticed that on the stepper(s) end (all 3 axes - X/Y/Z), the color sequence of the wires on connector is reversed, as opposed to what has been pictured in the build instructions on this page here:
http://x-carve-instructions.inventables.com/500mm/step6/

I however, wired the connections on the wiring blocks going to the controller side exactly the way it is shown here:
http://x-carve-instructions.inventables.com/500mm/step8/

As expected, this caused all three directions (X/Y/Z) to be reversed during the setup process, and later I saw that others have had the same issue as well. It’s documented in this post very well:

I also noticed that the Z-axis when moved up or down is noisier than the other axes. Is this normal? I checked and double-checked, there is no binding or things being over-tight or something… but just wanted to see if others have observed this as well.

I did get the side-board, but ended up not installing it, due to a lack of space (and to reduce the over all weight). Since the connections to the new X-controller as easily plugged and unplugged, I decided to skip the side-board for now.

All in all this was an excellent build, and went pretty smooth. Not rushing things also helped a lot in getting things right the first time, without having to go back, disassemble and redo things.

The community here is awesome, and while I have some experience building other DIY CNCs and 3D printers, I hope to learn a lot from folks here.

3 Likes

I am currently on the wiring of the controller phase of my assembly, and I completely agree about the lack of details as we get through the instructions. There were a couple times where I used the incorrect screws for some things early in the build, causing a LOT of backtracking. So I came to greatly depend on reading every little detail and part number 100%, which became a problem later, as those details were simply not there! I also noticed that the two side screws stop the controller board from moving backwards, and I happened to have 2 screws left that fit the threads, but my earlier mistakes in the build led me to have this nagging feeling in the back of my mind that those 2 screws might be M4x10 and they were supposed to be M4x8 or something like that. Then later in the build, I may need that extra 2 mm of length as I try to screw in an x8 screw into a part that requires an x10.

I’m glad I caught this before I started clamping all of the wires in. Should save me some trouble.