CNC-ish question

So let’s say I have one of these linear actuator bundles:

My intent is to build a saw stop using that. So I’ll just add a dog to the gantry. Then I assume I need a microstep driver, which I have. Then what I really want is some kind of nice little electronic box that already knows how to calibrate for something like this and let me set a distance in inches or mm and it’ll move to that location for me.

Does that electronic box exist, or do I gotta do that part from scratch with some kind of microcontroller? I’m willing and able to do that, but sometimes you’d rather just buy a thing.

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I don’t know of exactly what you want, though it might certainly exist.

If no one here has heard of such a thing, there might be middle ground between off-the-shelf and from-scratch.

It’s not that different from a 3d printer other than it’s… only one axis! :smiling_face:

I think that the VistaNC pendant talks gcode instead of pulses and displays position, so it might work to pair one with a control board such as a 3d printer control board or say one of Bart Dring’s ESP32-based boards. :thinking:

It’s possible that, say, Marlin with start gcode on a card to home on boot, and a screen configured to have only one menu for positioning one axis, might be a possible way to do this with mostly existing code and parts?

(I did a “zero-axis 3d printer” for my filament drying oven, where I have no motion control; I’m just using starting gcode to set the temperature of the heated bed I’m using as a heat source, and the display to modify the temperature.)

I see what you’re saying, but I’m not feeling like that is any easier really than just doing an Arduino and screen and buttons and custom code since the code to talk to the stepper is pretty damned simple, too. I was more hoping that some really simple and fairly cheap 2 or 3 axis existing DRO could easily be used by just using one axis, maybe.

I’m really surprised nobody is building saw stops like this already, tbh.

Also you look familiar. Do I know you from somewhere? :wink:

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Just a few hours ago, I was telling the story about floormattin’ a hard drive and using the cup holder…

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