GrblHAL support

I’m building up a system around a GrblHAL CNC controller and was wondering if anyone has made a workspace that works well with GrblHAL? I tried the jpadie Grbl 1.1 space and it only sort of works. I’ll drive the motors, but the numerical displays don’t update and the 3d preview doesn’t update.

I imagine these GrblHAL controllers are the future for hobby CNC.

1 Like

Were you able to find a solution for this John? I’ve got the Teensy 4.1 grblHAL board coming and will be doing some testing with it and ChiliPeppr as soon as it gets here. I’d really like this to work as well.

I haven’t tried it yet, but it was suggested that I try the GRBL firmware without extensions. That should work with software controllers that are expecting a more vanilla GRBL like the jpadie space.

Probably the best option sadly is to abandon chilipeppr entirely for the forked version of UGS that has the GrblHAL extensions. I’ve tested it with a Windows machine, and it indeed works well. I have an old Mac laptop out in the garage that I’ve been using with chilipeppr to drive my CNC, but I may have to acquire windows machine to use the GrblHAL board.

Does anybody know what differences the GrblHAL board has from regular Grbl? Maybe it just works out of the box, or maybe the jpadie workspace just needs a bit of tweaking.

1 Like

This describes some of the differences:

GrblHAL (kinda like what G2core was supposed to be) is a more advanced port of GRBL for the newer 32 bit microcontrollers with more memory. GRBL for the Arduino is not being actively developed since it’s just out of room. GrblHAL runs on hardware with a lot of additional program space to allow new features to be added, and the faster processors allow those new features to be more computationally expensive.

I think GrblHAL controllers are really going to be the future of hobby CNC. It would be really fantastic if chilipeppr had really good robust support for these devices.

1 Like

Ok, that’s great news. Getting onto a 32bit platform was key for moving Grbl forward. Even just the parsing of the response messages as JSON is way nicer than generic text strings, which you should be able to do fine on 32bit hardware.

Yeah, I agree this is the future of hobby CNC. So, now the question is did all of the response messages change? Did the buffer queuing change? Meaning did that “OK” response change because that was key for watching for no buffer overflows.

1 Like

OK, thanks John. Looks like Phil already shipped my board so when it gets here I’ll do some testing with UGS, but I’d sure like to figure out what it would take to get Chilipeppr working with GrblHAL I’m not sure have the time for that rabbit hole but I suspect its one I’ll go down :wink:

1 Like

I meant to ask you John, I assume your GrblHAL board (teensy or esp32?) replaced your original grbl board on your mill, or not yet?

I’ve set my CNC up in a modular fashion. I’ve got the stepper drivers separated from the micro controller board with DB15 connectors. That way I can swap out microcontrollers easily. To date I’ve been using an Arduino Due with G2core flashed to it so I can drive 4 axes, and use the tinyg workspace which is much better than the jpadie space.

I’m not very satisfied with the Due + G2core combo, though. I like the idea, but the reality has been pretty disappointing. To use it you have to download the source and build it yourself since none of the prebuilt binaries are functional. The Due doesn’t have EEprom, so the parameters like steps/unit or motor speeds, etc. have to be COMPILED into the code. Gross and inconvenient. I haven’t been able to get the switch inputs to work, and the devs aren’t very responsive to questions.

I tried flashing Grbl 1.1 to an Arduino Uno and control it with the jpadie workspace, but that’s pretty lacking as well. Yes, you can change the units and motor performance without a recompile, but you only get three axes, and the jpadie space is pretty broken for me. The 3d preview doesn’t update while gcode is running, and there are a lot of other features missing.

That’s why the Teensy 4.1 based GrblHAL looked like such a nice option. All the advantages of the G2core (4+ axes supported, fast 32 bit processor with loads of program space and ram, etc.) without the need to compile parameters into it. The bummer is the lack of support in Chilipeppr. That’s why I posted the topic.

Given how inexpensive and powerful GrblHAL is, I think hobby CNC is likely to move to it. I’d love to stay in the Chilipeppr ecosystem, but I’ll probably just do that with my existing G2core controller.

As I experiment with GrblHAL, I’ll be doing it in the UGS fork.

Would love to see Chilipeppr support for GrblHAL, though.

1 Like