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Parker Lopez
Parker Lopez

Serial Modbus Mach3 Cnc

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Serial Modbus Mach3 Cnc

I thought it would be a fun experiment to try to enhance the control using a Modbus slave device. Modbus devices are basically remote device that allow a host to read and write data registers. The remote device can then use the data registers to give information to the host or do a task when a register is written to by the host. The devices typically communicate using a serial port or Ethernet. You can view the Modbus protocol here.

There are a lot of commercial Modbus devices like ModIO and the Automation Direct PLCs, but I wanted a cheaper home grown version. I thought an Arduino would be a good choice because it has a built in USB to serial port, it is less cheap (less than $20) and it is open source.

This device is programmable in either Cubloc basic or PLC ladder. It supports serial Modbus and I2C and has commands for driving stepper motors built in. Since I planned to use it with Mach3, Modbus was the main attraction for me.


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