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Question #: 11166

Question: Can I get a replacement computer only ? I have a blacktoe with parallel port and it seems to have stopped working.

Current Solution

Sure. If you had your own computer to start with and now need a replacement for it, consider our redSprout and redLeaf systems. You can find information about them here: https://buildyourcnc.com/AssembledElectronics.aspx If you started with one of our assembled systems, and only need to replace certain components, contact our sales department at sales@buildyourcnc.com for a quote.

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Other Possible Solutions to this Question

  • My computer doesn't have a parallel port connection. Can I use a usb to parallel port cable to communicate with my breakout board?

    A parallel to USB adapter will not work. You will need to use a USB interface like the ones below:

    Mach3 USB interface:
    https://www.buildyourcnc.com/item/electronicsAndMotors-electronic-component-breakout-Mach3-USB-Board

    Poeys57CNC Interface:
    https://www.buildyourcnc.com/item/electronicsAndMotors-electronic-component-breakout-Mach4-mach3-USB-ethernet-Board

    Additional Information:
    To answer the question in more detail, the parallel port is actually an extension straight from the CPU and is also called the GPIO (General Purpose I/O) pins. These pins carry signals independently, hence the description as being a parallel port.

    The stepper motor driver receives a pulse train (series of pulses). A single pin on the parallel port sends a pulse train to one stepper motor driver and stepper motor for a single axis. Another pin on the parallel port sends a pulse train to another stepper motor driver on another axis. This happens simultaneously as with the direction signals for each axis.

    If a parallel port is adapted through a USB (using an adapter), the parallel port cannot have these signals happen in a simultaneous fashion and will cause the stepper motors of a CNC router or machine to be very clunky, if it works at all. To elaborate, the computer sends an instruction to the USB to send a high signal to pin 1, so it does, then another signal to pin 2, so it does. This is happening one after another. The speed at which this happens is reduced dramatically, and the position of one axis may now be out of sync to another axis.

    The reason the USB interfaces (linked above) work is that the USB delivers broad instructions to the interface (to a microcontroller) and the interface parses the instructions and outputs simultaneous signals to the stepper motor drivers.

    Hope this helps.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    My computer doesn't have a parallel port connection. Can I use a usb to parallel port cable to communicate with my breakout board?

  • I have a parallel. breakout board. and no parallel port at the back of my computer do those parallel. cards. work with the breakout board?

    If your computer does not have a parallel port, all you will need is a low cost PCI parallel adapter card (these can be found on amazon for $15-$20). If you plan on using a laptop (not recommended) you can try to find a PCMCIA parallel adapter, but many people have frequent issues with this setup. A more expensive solution would be to purchase a USB smooth stepper board. Unfortunately, we do not supply any of these adapters and cannot attest to their reliability.

    Additional Information:
    ur gay

    Additional Information:

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I have a parallel. breakout board. and no parallel port at the back of my computer do those parallel. cards. work with the breakout board?

  • MY COMPUTER DOES NOT HAVE A PARALLEL PORT. HOW DO I INTERFACE WITH THE BREAKOUT BOARD?

    If your computer does not have a parallel port, all you will need is a low cost PCI parallel adapter card (these can be found on amazon for $15-$20). If you plan on using a laptop (not recommended) you can try to find a PCMCIA parallel adapter, but many people have frequent issues with this setup. A more expensive solution would be to purchase a USB smooth stepper board. Unfortunately, we do not supply any of these adapters and cannot attest to their reliability.

    Additional Information:
    ur gay

    Additional Information:

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    MY COMPUTER DOES NOT HAVE A PARALLEL PORT. HOW DO I INTERFACE WITH THE BREAKOUT BOARD?

  • MY COMPUTER DOES NOT HAVE A PARALLEL PORT. HOW DO I INTERFACE WITH THE MACHINE?

    If your computer does not have a parallel port, all you will need is a low cost PCI parallel adapter card (these can be found on amazon for $15-$20). If you plan on using a laptop (not recommended) you can try to find a PCMCIA parallel adapter, but many people have frequent issues with this setup. A more expensive solution would be to purchase a USB smooth stepper board. Unfortunately, we do not supply any of these adapters and cannot attest to their reliability.

    Additional Information:
    ur gay

    Additional Information:

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    MY COMPUTER DOES NOT HAVE A PARALLEL PORT. HOW DO I INTERFACE WITH THE MACHINE?

  • I'm interested in purchasing your black tooth laser engraver and am curious what setup to get. I already have a cnc wired via parallel port to my PC. Do I need to purchase the black tooth laser with the integrated computer or can I just disconnect my current cnc's parallel port and connect it to the black tooth laser engraver? Also is the black tooth 110v?

    If you have an existing PC with a parallel port you will not need to purchase the onboard computer system on the blackTooth laser cutter and engraver. You will want to purchase the blackTooth laser engraver that comes with the parallel interface (breakout board). If you have an existing CNC machine that is being used with this PC, you can disconnect the CNC machine and connect the blackTooth to this PC. You will want to have two configurations for your control software.

    Additional Information:
    We have a version of the blackTooth that is 110v and 220v. We generally determine which is sent according to the requirements of the customer and in what country they live.

    Additional Information:
    20

    Additional Information:
    Parallel Port Configuration BIOS settings and Mach 3.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I'm interested in purchasing your black tooth laser engraver and am curious what setup to get. I already have a cnc wired via parallel port to my PC. Do I need to purchase the black tooth laser with the integrated computer or can I just disconnect my current cnc's parallel port and connect it to the black tooth laser engraver? Also is the black tooth 110v?

  • I own a BlackToe cnc machine. The plastic threads with the spring over them broke. Where can i purchase a replacement part?

    If you're talking about the anti-backlash nut, ou can find replacements on our website here: https://buildyourcnc.com/CNCMachineMechanicalParts.aspx and here: https://buildyourcnc.com/CNCMachineMechanicalParts.aspx. If you have something else in mind, please contact us to further describe the part you need.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I own a BlackToe cnc machine. The plastic threads with the spring over them broke. Where can i purchase a replacement part?

  • Can I purchase a computer off Amazon (I have a machine I want to use) and still use the USB interface to drive it with LinuxCNC?

    You will need to build the table unit for your machine. There are instructions on how to do this at the bottom of the product page here, https://www.buildyourcnc.com/Item/cnc-machine-blackFoot-v4
    There is no estimate on how much this will cost though, since there are too many variables involved to do this.

    - PC with parallel port and USB port
    - 20awg stranded wires for the motors - http://www.buildyourcnc.com/electronicscombo.aspx
    - 18awg stranded wires for power supply to drivers
    - 24awg stranded wires for breakout board to drivers
    (location and spacing of components varies from one person to another, so we do not provide cables/wires)
    - General purpose extension cord (cut the female end off) to provide power to power supply
    - USB cable to power breakout board
    - Parallel cable to communicate to breakout board
    - Router
    - (optional - instead of router) Spindle with power inverter http://www.buildyourcnc.com/SpindlesAndAccessories.aspx
    - (if purchasing spindle with inverter) General purpose extension cord (240v) (cut the female end off) to provide power to power inverter
    - End Mill(s) http://www.buildyourcnc.com/ProductsEndMills.aspx
    - CAD, and/or CAD-CAM software (to produce geometry, machine operations, and g-code) http://www.buildyourcnc.com/CNCsoftware.aspx
    - CNC control software (to read g-code and control machine) http://www.buildyourcnc.com/CNCsoftware.aspx

    This answer is applicable to most of our machines with the exception of the greenLean and the blueChick since those machines are equipped with a table structure.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    Can I purchase a computer off Amazon (I have a machine I want to use) and still use the USB interface to drive it with LinuxCNC?

  • I have your breakout board with relay parallel port , how can I wire up a regular router to that board so I can control the router

    Here is how to connect your router to the parallel breakout board through the on-board relay. You will need a spare extension cord. You will need to remove a portion of the outer jacket of the extension cord to expose the white, black and green wires (white = neutral, black = live and green = ground), understanding that the neutral and live create the completed circuit.

    See this image of a similar connection. The terminal has the same connections.
    https://www.buildyourcnc.com/images/vacuum-pressure-controller-relay-terminals-700.JPG

    Image of the relay terminal:
    https://www.buildyourcnc.com/images/breakoutboardrelayNONC.PNG

    The live/black wire would be cut and one end of the cut would be secured into the P terminal and the other cut end would be secured into the S terminal. The live and ground wire would be uncut and travel from the plug to the router.


    Additional Information:
    You can also connect other high powered devices to the breakout board using any of the output terminals. You will need to supply extra relays like the one shown here:
    https://www.buildyourcnc.com/item/electronicsAndMotors-breakout-Relays-relay-board-250V-12A-5V

    Or you can find SSRs (Solid State Relays) that will accept 5v to drive the relay coil. Make sure the SSR will protect the 5V line from Back EMF as there is a coil in the relay. The one we sell contains a fly-back diode to protect the 5v terminal.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I have your breakout board with relay parallel port , how can I wire up a regular router to that board so I can control the router

  • can I purchase just the parallel controller board? I purchased the usb option 4 axis combo and would like to also try the system with my parallel port computer. Any help with this will be greatly appreciated; my goal is to implement mach4.
  • You sent my my activation code which I have jealously, guarded on my Desktop till needed, now, unfortunately I cant get it to copy from Desktop to the computer and Mach3, is it possible to get advice on this or maybe a replacement that can be put on a stick then plugged into my Mach3 computer. This is how I have tried but when I open the folder it is empty. Thanks for your patience with me.
  • How can I convert from Xylotex to yours, four axis with limit switches. Have parallel PC and steppers on machine.

    Sure, the USB interface has a place for 4 axes of limit switches.

    Each axis can have two limit switches: one for the ++ (positive) end and one for the -- (negative) end. The positive end would be the limit switch at the end of the machine that, say the machine has a 4'x8' area, reaches a bit after the 8 foot mark. The negative end would be the limit switch behind the 0 foot location behind the origin. If the origin is in the middle, the negative would be at a little more than the -4 foot end and the positive would be at a bit more than the +4 foot end. Note that you can have more than one switch on each pin where the NC is connected in serial fashion and the NO is connected in parallel fashion (this can be seen on the diagram in the multiple limits switch section). The software configurations for the limits switches are under File -> Settings -> Limit.

    A typical limit switch has three connections on it. These connections consist of COM (common), NC (normally closed) and NO (normally open). The COM would generally go to GND and the NC or the NO would go to the pin. If the NC is used, then the the switch is constantly connected until the switch is pushed (engaged) then the connection from the pin to gnd is broken (open). Use the settings in software to set whether in NC or NO configuration.

    Let me know if this information was helpful (or not) by adding information to this question. Thanks.

    User response:
    Thank you very much for this helpful information. I'm still a little fuzzy on how the 6 limit switches physically connect to each other and to the USB breakout board. You've stated one switch (home) goes to positive and another switch (limit) goes to negative. Are all the GND prongs from all 6 switches connected to each other and going to GND on the breakout board, or no? And the NC prongs, how exactly are they connected to each other? And to the board? There has to be a diagram somewhere shows this visually, no? I don't know how to wire the switches in series or in parallel. I have already physically installed all the switches on the machine and ran the wires to where the board is. Now I just need to know where to plug these wires into the board. Also, taking into consideration that I'm using the Planet CNC software, the only settings I have pertaining to limit switches is "Enable/Disable" for each axis, and the actual limit for each axis. Nothing about NC or NO. Is that only in Mach3?
    Thank you.

    buildyourcnc response:
    On the USB interface, the COM on the switch connects to GND and the NC or NO connects to the input pin (i.e. x++, y--, etc.)

    Limit switch configuration is rather difficult to understand, especially with series and parallel. You can think of series as a single wire going from GND to the axis letter input terminal (i.e. X++ or X--). If the wire is broken, then the circuit is open (or the switch is engaged in a normally closed scenario). Normally closed is like an actual wire, and when engaged, the switch "opens" (breaks the wire). This is why we recommend in some systems that you can put many switches in series on a single pin. When one of the switches is engaged (breaking the connection) then the entire circuit of switches is broken and the machine stops.

    In a parallel scenario, the state of the circuit is always broken until the one of the switches is engaged and the circuit is then closed or connected. The topology looks like a ladder. All the switches connect to both sides of the ladder and the switches are like the runs of the ladder (the horizontal bars that the feet are placed while climbing). Imagine all of the switches broken in this scenario (normally open). It would be like the ladder could be split in two, but if one of the ladder runs (switches) is closed by engaging it, then that run would connect both sides of the ladder and the two sides of the ladder would have a connection.

    There is a diagram on the USB page of the various limit switch configurations. If you need more information (visual and/or otherwise), please let us know and we will immediately add that information to benefit everyone.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    How can I convert from Xylotex to yours, four axis with limit switches. Have parallel PC and steppers on machine.

  • As I am building my 20" x 24" laser engraver cutter, I notice that there is no parallel port on the onboard computer and I have the parallel breakout board any answers?

    Most motherboard do contain parallel ports, but the port connector may not be at the back (in the section where external connectors will be connected). Instead, the motherboard may contain an LPT ribbon connector on the actual face of the motherboard (usually along one of the edges). You will need a ribbon connector to a DB25 female connector.

    If your motherboard does not contain an LPT header on the motherboard, you can purchase a parallel printer adapter that plugs into one of the PCI slots. The price of the adapter is very inexpensive and sometimes is actually less costly than the actual ribbon connector.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    As I am building my 20" x 24" laser engraver cutter, I notice that there is no parallel port on the onboard computer and I have the parallel breakout board any answers?

  • It appears I have a connection issue with the USB port on my computer with the USB cord. I purchased a new cord but has the same issue. Is there anything I can do to correct this issue?

    Is this CNC related. If so, what controller are you using?

    Additional Information:
    I'm using the Mach 3/USB CNC interface board, with the Mach 3 software.

    Additional Information:
    Does the LED on the controller light up, or blink?

    Additional Information:
    I believe I've corrected the issue. I found that their are 2 spring like tabs on the female USB port. And take a sharp point like on a compass and gentle raise those tabs a bit. This tighten up the connection, and I never received an error from losing connection.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    It appears I have a connection issue with the USB port on my computer with the USB cord. I purchased a new cord but has the same issue. Is there anything I can do to correct this issue?

  • I DON'T HAVE A PARALLEL PORT ON MY COMPUTER. WHAT DO NEED?

    If your computer does not have a parallel port, all you will need is a low cost PCI parallel adapter card (these can be found on amazon for $15-$20). If you plan on using a laptop (not recommended) you can try to find a PCMCIA parallel adapter, but many people have frequent issues with this setup. A more expensive solution would be to purchase a USB smooth stepper board. Unfortunately, we do not supply any of these adapters and cannot attest to their reliability.

    Additional Information:
    ur gay

    Additional Information:

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I DON'T HAVE A PARALLEL PORT ON MY COMPUTER. WHAT DO NEED?

  • MY COMPUTER DOES NOT HAVE A PARALLEL PORT. WHAT DO I NEED?

    If your computer does not have a parallel port, all you will need is a low cost PCI parallel adapter card (these can be found on amazon for $15-$20). If you plan on using a laptop (not recommended) you can try to find a PCMCIA parallel adapter, but many people have frequent issues with this setup. A more expensive solution would be to purchase a USB smooth stepper board. Unfortunately, we do not supply any of these adapters and cannot attest to their reliability.

    Additional Information:
    ur gay

    Additional Information:

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    MY COMPUTER DOES NOT HAVE A PARALLEL PORT. WHAT DO I NEED?

  • I have installed PCI card parallel port and all pins read 3.5v no matter which jog key is pressed can you suggest a solution?

    If you are using a Parallel port card plugged into the motherboard in a PCI slot, or other compatible slot that interfaces directly to the microprocessor, you will need to make sure that the correct I/O address is entered into the configuration for your control software.

    This I/O address is the first one in the range that Windows, or other operating system, will provide when accessing that information. In Windows, you would need to access this information in the device manager. Select the LPT port that is associated with the added parallel card. The port address will need to be in hex form, not decimal.

    Other technical information that may help to understand the process:
    The operating system will provide the address range, the first will be associated with pin 1, and the remaining addresses in the range will associate to the remaining pins (excluding the gnd pins) of the parallel port. This provides high and low signaling for each pin when a one is applied to the address. This is the reason the parallel port is called parallel, since each pin is independent and can output, or receive input simultaneously.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I have installed PCI card parallel port and all pins read 3.5v no matter which jog key is pressed can you suggest a solution?

  • I HAVE BLACKTOE 4.1 WITH PORTER CABLE 890 ROUTER.TO CONVERT TO SPINDLE(2.2KW) CAN JUST CHANGE THE MOUNT?

    If you would like to use a spindle rather than a router on your existing CNC, we will send you another set of components that will allow the spindle to be mounted properly which includes the z-axis rails, rail support, spindle mounts and the dust shoe components. You can find this item to purchase here: https://www.buildyourcnc.com/category/z-axis

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I HAVE BLACKTOE 4.1 WITH PORTER CABLE 890 ROUTER.TO CONVERT TO SPINDLE(2.2KW) CAN JUST CHANGE THE MOUNT?

  • Should I connect both the USB and the 25 pin connector of the parallel breakout board to the computer?

    The parallel breakout board has the db25 connector for data and the USB connector for power. Connect the USB from the computer to the parallel breakout board so the breakout board will have 5V of power coming from the computer. The db25 connector (connector with the 25 pins) receive data signals for each pin from 1 to 17 and have respective numbered screw terminals, some for input and some for output (18 to 25 are gnd pins).

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    Should I connect both the USB and the 25 pin connector of the parallel breakout board to the computer?

  • I have blacktoe 4.1 with porter cable 890 router.To convert to spindle(2.2kw) can I just change the mount?

    If you would like to use a spindle rather than a router on your existing CNC, we will send you another set of components that will allow the spindle to be mounted properly which includes the z-axis rails, rail support, spindle mounts and the dust shoe components. You can find this item to purchase here: https://www.buildyourcnc.com/category/z-axis

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I have blacktoe 4.1 with porter cable 890 router.To convert to spindle(2.2kw) can I just change the mount?

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