Quick Question(I think):  Has anyone/ or could you use the auto-level for woodworking projects

gplus
(Colleen McGuire) #1

Quick Question(I think): Has anyone/ or could you use the auto-level for woodworking projects where the surface might be curved or not perfectly level? It looks like the auto-level routine quickly and automatically moves to the specified test points. Might I manually move a regular z probe around the surface and have it test that point with a keystroke? Possibly - I’ll need a different - pressure sensitive probe… Or do I just not understand this feature at all? (TOTALLY possible).

(JOHN LAUER) #2

Yes, it’s totally possible. What folks have done is laid aluminum foil over their wood, slate, etc to get the warpage. Then auto-level will refactor the gcode for the warpage. I would think you could do it without any manual pausing using that technique.

If you want to manually pause you’d have to fork the widget and add some kind of modal dialog popup letting the user unpause when they click a button.

(Colleen McGuire) #3

Ah of course, aluminum foil… I’ll try it…I wonder if a piezo touch sensor would do as well or better… although I’ve not seen any commercially available. Thanks - I’ll try the foil method. :slight_smile:

(Phil Aldrich) #4

I had the same thought and created a crude touch probe that has a spring in the base and makes contact when the probe is lowered to the wood surface. No code forking required. I’ll post a pic later today.

(Frank Graffagnino) #5

if you get this to work… we would all love to see a video!

(JOHN LAUER) #6

Agreed. Would love a video of it working.

(Phil Aldrich) #7

I made a short video of the probe in action. I choose a very warped piece of oak and ran the auto level code. Worked like a champ!

(JOHN LAUER) #8

Love it. That looks so awesome.

(Frank Graffagnino) #9

nice. not sure if the already sell a probe like that… but if not… make 'em and sell 'em!

(Phil Aldrich) #10

There are manufactured probes like it but they cost a small fortune for no more than what they are. I just used what I had laying around the workshop.

(Frank Graffagnino) #11

sounds like a market opportunity to me! :slight_smile:

(Colleen McGuire) #12

@Phil_Aldrich I’d buy it! :slight_smile: But for me, it would be helpful to have it magnetically attach to the spindle mount so that I could quickly and easily install when needed (assuming I can get the XY offset that @jlauer mentioned working correctly) . I tried the aluminum foil method and … didn’t like. Foil needs to be essentially glued to the work surface for it to give a good representation. The homemade probe looks like the ticket! … will try it - Thanks!

(Phil Aldrich) #13

I thought about a magnetic mount but I don’t have any strong magnets handy. I do like the idea of this however. I have also toyed with the idea of hacking a Harbor Freight digital depth gauge and be able to get depth readings much faster by “dragging” the gauge across the wood. Someone has already hacked the gauge but I have not had any luck… yet.