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Question #: 3518

Question: Do you guys have any videos showing how to connect limit switches to a redleaf? If not, could you please make one? I looked at the diagrams on the limit switch page but I don't understand them.

Current Solution

Connecting the limit switches on the redLeaf use the input pins on the parallel breakout board. Here is a link to the wiring diagram for that parallel breakout board.

https://buildyourcnc.com/item/electronicsAndMotors-parallel-breakout-relay#prettyPhoto/2/

The connection is simple. Just create a circuit from ground to the pin. When the pin is engaged, the circuit is closed (using normally open on the switch). Use mach3's autoset to automatically set the pin for the limit or home setting.

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Other Possible Solutions to this Question

  • Do you have any videos or plans for how to make a strong table for a large CNC router? I saw the torsion box videos but would like some more guidance on how to build just a good table.
  • Please provide detailed instructions on how to connect limit switches to CNC USB BOARD. I can not find instructions anywhere. I am new to cnc world and really need help. Thanks

    The USB Interface page: https://buildyourcnc.com/item/electronicsAndMotors-electronic-component-USB-Controller-Breakout

    On this page, there is a datasheet that explains the connection schemes for the limit switches on step 1 of the instructions. The datasheet explains single and multiple switch configurations and parallel/serial connections schemes for the NO/NC (Normally Open/Normally Closed states).

    If there is further information you need, please reply on this FAQ.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    Please provide detailed instructions on how to connect limit switches to CNC USB BOARD. I can not find instructions anywhere. I am new to cnc world and really need help. Thanks

  • I just ordered a 1/2" lead screw and bearings, etc. But I don't see any 1/2" shim washers for those bearings. If you have any, please toss 8 of them in the shipment and I'll gladly reimburse you.

    We will provide shim washers as a part of machine assemblies, but when purchasing lead screw and bearings, the shim washers must be purchased as well. Please give us a call and we can send them out.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I just ordered a 1/2" lead screw and bearings, etc. But I don't see any 1/2" shim washers for those bearings. If you have any, please toss 8 of them in the shipment and I'll gladly reimburse you.

  • I have the redleaf system for my black toe machine I have wired my limit switches in series NC after setting up in mach 3 I still get limit switch tripped after apply and ok setup can only run if I disable what am I doing wrong

    If you are using Mach3, the setting for the input pin 10 may be enabled as a default for use with the Emergency Stop. If there is no emergency stop on that pin, the reset will trip every time.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I have the redleaf system for my black toe machine I have wired my limit switches in series NC after setting up in mach 3 I still get limit switch tripped after apply and ok setup can only run if I disable what am I doing wrong

  • I have nearly completed the CNC machine from the book, but I am using it with a USB breakout board, and have no idea how to wire the 6 limit switches to the board. I'm having difficulty following the diagram on the USB breakout board screen. Can someone please help me?

    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:
    I have nearly completed the CNC machine from the book, but I am using it with a USB breakout board, and have no idea how to wire the 6 limit switches to the board. I'm having difficulty following the diagram on the USB breakout board screen. Can someone please help me?

  • I have a breakout board and it appears that the pin 12 connection has failed: when i move my limit switches to pin 11 they work; they don't work on pin 12. Do i need a new breakout board?

    For safety's sake I would recommend a new board because they are inexpensive compared to the electronics that they support. Alternatively, it's possible that the one dead pin is a simple fix, such as a bad connection or solder joint; if you feel comfortable making those repairs then it could be worthwhile to check. Finally, if you are not using all the input pins, you could continue to operate the limit switch on pin 11 and hope for the best.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I have a breakout board and it appears that the pin 12 connection has failed: when i move my limit switches to pin 11 they work; they don't work on pin 12. Do i need a new breakout board?

  • I recently received missing stop button and limit switches in my 5x kit. Thank you. Is there suppose to be any bulk wiring in kit for limit switches and 2.2 spindle? If not could you please describe correct gauge wire for both? Cheers.

    The hookup wires you will need is 22 to 24 AWG stranded and shielded for the wiring of the limit switches and E_Stop. Our kit customers select various places for these switches, so we don't supply the wiring. If you don't use shielded cable, you will need to change the debounce setting in Mach3 (if that is the control program you are using).

    We typically use 14 AWG stranded wire for the VFD to Spindle (U, V, W) connections.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I recently received missing stop button and limit switches in my 5x kit. Thank you. Is there suppose to be any bulk wiring in kit for limit switches and 2.2 spindle? If not could you please describe correct gauge wire for both? Cheers.

  • Hey Guys, I have a brand new redleaf and 5x. In the final stages of wiring and wondering a few things. Can I connect the Mach3 USB board V+ V- to my frequency inverter (type YL600-2s-2k20)? If so where? Will your upcoming (part 2)video deal with this as well as final connections for limit switches and stop button? Merry Christmas!

    Yes, the Mach3 USB board has two terminals that require 24V connection. Most VFDs have a 24V output that can be used to power this part of the Mach3 USB board.

    The V+ and V- on the Mach3 USB is not absolutely necessary to operate the CNC machine/router. The V+ and V- of the Mach3 USB board powers the outputs, inputs, and spindle's speed and control.

    Here is the Mach3 USB link for more information:
    https://www.buildyourcnc.com/item/electronicsAndMotors-electronic-component-breakout-Mach3-USB-Board

    The new YL600 VFD we have in stock may not have this 24V output. There is a 12V terminal, but I have not tested that terminal if it outputs 12V, or if it is a 12V input. If you are only conecting limit switches to the Mach3 USB and need to power that portion, 12V will be sufficient.

    I will delve into these aspects in far more detail on video.

    Thanks and Merry Christmas to you as well!

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    Hey Guys, I have a brand new redleaf and 5x. In the final stages of wiring and wondering a few things. Can I connect the Mach3 USB board V+ V- to my frequency inverter (type YL600-2s-2k20)? If so where? Will your upcoming (part 2)video deal with this as well as final connections for limit switches and stop button? Merry Christmas!

  • can you please specify how to connect the collar/nut and bearings to prevent the axial movement of lead screw. Do I have to put that next to the stepper motor /coupling assembling or on the other side where the lead screw comes out. Or is there any way I can make the flexible coupling rigid so it does not come out of the middle spider?

    You would use a combination of bearings and collars to prevent your lead screw or rod from being able to move back and forth. Without it being able to move back and forth, you shouldn't have the couplings coming apart, because the motor is solidly mounted and unable to move as well.

    I will try to draw a picture using symbols, with a key to define what each part is.

    --CB|--------------|BC}{M

    - = Lead Screw or Rod
    C = Collar
    B = Bearing
    | = Wood, the frame of your machine
    }{ = Coupling
    M = Motor

    On the example above you could replace the collar on the motor side with one half of the coupling, putting it right upside of the bearing to hold it in place instead. Like this:

    --CB|--------------|B}{M

    You could also place the bearings on the inside as follows:

    ----|BC----------CB|--}{M

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    can you please specify how to connect the collar/nut and bearings to prevent the axial movement of lead screw. Do I have to put that next to the stepper motor /coupling assembling or on the other side where the lead screw comes out. Or is there any way I can make the flexible coupling rigid so it does not come out of the middle spider?

  • I need wiring instructions for the breakout board you sent yesterday. It is not like the one in the videos and I don't know where to connect the 5V. No data sheet or anything.
  • I would like to make a handheld remote for the USB CNC Board using a joystick instead of momentary switches. Could you suggest one that will work with your board.

    The USB interface only works with momentary switches unfortunately. If you have extensive knowledge of digital electronics, you can apply a receiver that uses a microcontroller and a transmitter with another microcontroller that produces the pulsing signal with the controls that you need.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I would like to make a handheld remote for the USB CNC Board using a joystick instead of momentary switches. Could you suggest one that will work with your board.

  • I'm searching for a desktop cnc, could you tell me please if any software I may choose could be compatible with all desktop cnc machine or I have to check the compatibility before ?

    Generally, you’ll need to check what control software will need to be used with the CNC router. Our machines use industry standard electronics and control software that is nonproprietary so you can use just about any software out there with our machines.

    Specifically, what software are you planning on using?

    Additional Information:
    dear Sir,
    I'm searching for the best one,I think that I have to learn more about that in order to be able to make the right decision.

    Additional Information:
    If you are using a computer running Microsoft Windows, then I would recommend using Mach3 or Mach4. If you prefer Linux, then LinuxCNC is the best control software in my opinion.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I'm searching for a desktop cnc, could you tell me please if any software I may choose could be compatible with all desktop cnc machine or I have to check the compatibility before ?

  • hello, my question is, I recieved two breakoutboards exactly the same, do I need them both for my greenbull 4x8 also, I cant find any tutorial showing the installatio and placement of the limit switches, can I have some assistance please? sorry fot he bad english and thanks.

    No, you should not have received two parallel breakout boards in your CNC kit. You can return the extra item using standard shipping with COD. Our apologies for the confusion and the inconvenience.

    I will answer the other question as another FAQ. Please check the Customer Service page to see the answer to that question.

    If you have difficulty finding the answer, here is a link:
    https://www.buildyourcnc.com/FAQ/13636

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    hello, my question is, I recieved two breakoutboards exactly the same, do I need them both for my greenbull 4x8 also, I cant find any tutorial showing the installatio and placement of the limit switches, can I have some assistance please? sorry fot he bad english and thanks.

  • I want to add limit switches but I have no connections on the breakout board. Can I use a usb interface board for the limit switches as well as the parallel port for the running?

    You can add a limit switch to either the USB or the parallel board. Please refer to the product pages for these items to view wiring diagrams.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I want to add limit switches but I have no connections on the breakout board. Can I use a usb interface board for the limit switches as well as the parallel port for the running?

  • I want to add limit switches but I have no connections on the breakout board. Can I use a usb interface board for the limit switches as well as the parallel port for the running?

    You can add a limit switch to either the USB or the parallel board. Please refer to the product pages for these items to view wiring diagrams.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    I want to add limit switches but I have no connections on the breakout board. Can I use a usb interface board for the limit switches as well as the parallel port for the running?

  • LIMIT SWITCHES FOR AXIS. THE PRINT SHOWS THAT YOU CAN WIRE LIMITS EITHER N.O. OR N.C. SO IF THIS IS CORRECT I WOULD NEED TO TELL BOARD IN SOFTWARE HOW LOOK AT THESE LIMITS, I'M GOING GET AN INPUT LOOSE DEPEND ON IT.

    BYCNC Response:
    This is correct. You will need to use a method appropriate for the software you are using. Also remember that NC switches are typically wired in series, while NO switches are normally wired in parallel.

    User Response:
    I am using the cnc planet software for your USB board. Are the limit configurations in this software?

    BYCNC Response:
    Yes, Planet CNC software is compatible with the use of limit switches. Configuration information will depend on your specific application. You can view Planet CNC's information here: http://www.planet-cnc.com/files/CNCUSBController.pdf

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    LIMIT SWITCHES FOR AXIS. THE PRINT SHOWS THAT YOU CAN WIRE LIMITS EITHER N.O. OR N.C. SO IF THIS IS CORRECT I WOULD NEED TO TELL BOARD IN SOFTWARE HOW LOOK AT THESE LIMITS, I'M GOING GET AN INPUT LOOSE DEPEND ON IT.

  • [596] I have my motors and limit switches working correctly but I am unable to get any movement from the 'jog step' so that I can set 0,0,0. What should I check

    Are you trying to use the MPG (tab), or the keyboard for jogging the motors? You mention 0,0,0, are you trying to home the machine with the "ref all home"?

    If you cannot move the motors with the keyboard, check if the jog is enabled.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    [596] I have my motors and limit switches working correctly but I am unable to get any movement from the 'jog step' so that I can set 0,0,0. What should I check

  • How do I wire the limit switches on the VLXL? Also, where do I place them? You included 2 rotary and two other limit switches.

    You can actually select many places for the switches, depending on where you think your zero will be. I will take pictures of where we positioned our switches. We set the positions so the zero is at the bottom left corner of the machine.

    Additional Information:
    I will take pictures tomorrow.

    Additional Information:
    Thank you. Just want to finish before the holiday.

    Additional Information:
    Not a problem at all and my apologies for not having that information. I have been meaning to put up a video on the limit switch connection as it is somewhat difficult to explain the process in words and diagrams.

    Additional Information:
    Any update?

    Additional Information:
    I plan on driving to the office later today and take pictures.

    Additional Information:
    Thank you. I've just done almost everything else. Just waiting for the grade 3 grease in the mail. Also, where do you suggest connecting the cable carriers? I ran everything through the top but the carrier is getting kind of full. Because of that, it is pushing the belt out when the gantry moves.

    Additional Information:
    I will take pictures of those connections as well.

    Additional Information:
    Much appreciated.

    Additional Information:
    It’s my pleasure.

    Additional Information:
    I’m almost to the office. I’ve been shuttling my kids around today. Sorry for the wait.

    Additional Information:
    I’m adding the images to the end of the VLXL instructions.

    Additional Information:
    The limit switch connections use the NO (Normally Open) terminals. That means that the switch, when not engaged, is normally open (no connection between the com and the NO terminal). When the switch is engaged, then the connection is closed and the NO and COM terminal become connected, making a circuit.

    Additional Information:
    Did you bend the arm on the x switch? Or can you mount it flush with enough give to trigger? Same on both sides?


    Additional Information:
    It does look like it is bent in the picture. No, you do not need to bend the arm of the rotary switch.

    Additional Information:
    We only have the rotary switch on one side.

    Click the link to add information to this solution:
    How do I wire the limit switches on the VLXL? Also, where do I place them? You included 2 rotary and two other limit switches.

  • I purchased limit switches from you mounted them on my machine and wire them to the breakout for using pin 12 and the ground on the breakout board, after a few minutes I got a message about a limit switch trip. Am I supposed to use the extra outport on the board instead of the ground?

    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:
    I purchased limit switches from you mounted them on my machine and wire them to the breakout for using pin 12 and the ground on the breakout board, after a few minutes I got a message about a limit switch trip. Am I supposed to use the extra outport on the board instead of the ground?

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