I would be shocked if a print server box would work for a K40. The m2nano board doesn’t work like a printer at all.
Yeah, that’s what I was thinking but I’m not a network person.
For a device to be USB it SHOULD behave like a USB DEVICE… and a smart USB server should be able to detect it as an unknown device and at least open up a port. It doesn’t recognize that anything is there…
I may try a laptop to see if it sees anything when it is plugged in locally…
Oh, be sure the board is powered on. There can sometimes be a switch for the control board separate from the main power switch.
Edit: Nevermind, I forgot you said it homed fine.
Someone remarked they didn’t know if it would work off a print server… But it’s a USB device, UNIVERSAL serial bus, so if it is a USB device, it should work off a USB print server… but I will be trying it with a laptop locally. What a pain…
Really don’t want to run a 30’ USB cable between the shop and my office…
Hi, “Someone” here.
I hear that you want USB print servers to work that way. But they don’t. I can’t guarantee that it won’t work for you, but I’ll be highly surprised if it does, and I can tell you with confidence that USB print servers are not universal remote-USB-over-ethernet devices. In any case, to the best of my knowledge, this forum doesn’t include people who designed your print server, USB protocols, the m2nano boards, or the CorelLaser software. I agree that the “universal” in USB is a bit of a stretch. But there are plenty of people on this forum who actually have fairly detailed programming knowledge, including about USB. Shouting that the U in USB is UNIVERSAL won’t make any difference to whether it will work, nor will it change it from not working to working.
This link will explain everything you need to know about the m2Nano. You are more than welcome to let us know if this information enables you to connect to the board in the way you insist it should.
You could get yourself a raspberry pi. I use one with K40 Whisperer and a remote desktop session.
Works perfectly, and doesn’t tie-up your laptop while doing its tasks.
Anyway, it seem to me far more practical to be able to command the K40 next from it to avoid back and forth, to load/position, you need to keep an eye on it anyway for safety, specially at the beginning of K40 journey. (Remember you play with fire)
Long USB is not recommended, many issues to be read on this forum.
Maybe you need to rethink a practical work organisation.
Excellent point @StephaneBUISSON (good to see you by the way ). Sometimes it’s easy to focus on an issue without thinking about the ramifications associated with the issue ( as in is this really an issue that needs to be solved).
If you google remote control of a K40 most people just suggest getting a cheap laptop. Alternatively installing a different control board can allow running from a SD card.
From the K40 Intro linked at the top of every page, please read this:
Laser cutters catch fire.
Thanks, @StephaneBUISSON, for pointing out the real problem with remote operation of a K40! The fact that they tend not to work well with long USB cords is really a safety feature, even if it’s unintentional.
USB is USB. It is fairly universal. Printer servers are a subset of USB protocols, well really protocols work in nesting layers, but you would need to implement one of the several printing protocols to get this to work. Keep in mind this idea isn’t too outlandish. It turns out some laser cutters actually do permit operations as printers. Some high end Toltec and I think there’s a Moshiprinter thing for moshiboards. Stock M2 Nanos though do not run like that. They have some significant deficits that would prevent them from running like a printer, namely they have no printer protocols and they lack memory to even store a print job if they somehow did. They are a CH341 chip hooked to a old processor that flips switches on the stepper motor. It runs pretty bare bones and all the data is basically entirely compiled bytecode that changes board states.
You’ll need some software that runs the stock M2 Nano. This would be LaserDrw, CorelLaser, WinsealXP, K40 Whisperer, Visicut, or MeerK40t.
I am moving towards some emulation abilities within MeerK40t and hopefully will be able to properly emulate being a ruida device in 0.7.x series of the program (It’s already really close). And you could, in theory, write something to emulate IPP protocol or something else and run that on a Raspberry Pi, and bridge that gap and have your K40 really work like a printer. This would be especially helpful if the printer data sent vector information which according to many protocols they do. This tends to be rendered inside the printer, but it really sort of could work. I’m not sure of the utility of that.
TLDR; M2Nanos are not printers, hooking them to a printer server no more makes them a printer than hooking them to a USB speaker makes them a music device. Printers are built on top of USB, USB is not built on top of printers. You can hook a mouse to a printer server too, they are also Universal Serial Bus devices, but it doesn’t make the mouse implement any printer protocols.
Thanks everyone for the reminder about safety. Our social group has a LaserForge in their crafting room where we do all our real “work.” The laser I am trying to get to work was donated to the group and I was asked to see if it might work.
With a questionable ETR label, grounding issues, no interlocks, needing water for cooling, questionable ventilation, and many more things we have determined that it won’t be going into the club.
At this point is is purely curiosity to see if will work at all. I want to spend as little of MY money as possible on seeing if it will work before it is tossed out as unsafe/unusable.
I think @NedMan has been the poster child here for getting real use out of a mostly-stock K40 without breaking the bank. My understanding is that he has stayed closer to stock than most of the other K40 aficionados here, while still operating safely.
I am interested in knowing if your assessment:
Concluded that the K40 can not be modified to be as safe as the Laserforge
… its just not worth doing
It seems like you can reduce the risk to burning down the building rather considerable with some care. And careful selection or projects makes it produce fewer weaponized gasses. Keep in mind the resale community for K40s is pretty strong. If the laser fires you could very likely get somebody to buy it for $250-$350 bucks. That said the software is free and while air assist does greatly reduce the lighting of fires you can absolutely run it with flowing water and a cursory check of the wiring.
I think @bsisson wants to use it in his maker space and does not want to invest any of his own money in it to make it safe.
I modified the topic title so to make it easier for the next person to find who is curious about running a K40 through a network print bridge device.
Yeah, but that’s about the to change though when I get my 3D printer Got some long planned upgrades that the printer will make happen a lot easier and cheaper.
Many many many years ago I would have had lots of fun “Hacking” the K40 to make it stronger, faster, and better than before…
I now have far less space, money or energy to spend on something that does not “play nice” with the rest of our House’s IoT stuff.
It could be made safer with interlocks and better grounding. The mirrors and optics can be upgraded along with the controller, and then you have… something almost as good as something that costs less and has support…
The video on the M2nano board was, uhm, enlightening… that thing is dumb, really dumb. Doesn’t even have enough smarts to give its name on a usb port query.
I will try digging out a laptop to see if it regognizes that and will then likely put it out on the web for someone else to play with.