ZEN 3-Axis Controller Card

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The Zen 2010 3-Axis Stepper Motor Driver 3 x 1.5A 2-phase stepper motors. It comes complete with an on-board relay switch that can be used to control the power of your spindle motor. Input pins are also available to setup your limit/home switches and the EStop and Digital Probe pins are included.

The new aluminum enclosure protects the card, provides a detailed chart of pin settings to make the installation easier. The enclosure also acts as a heat sink for the integrated circuits inside.

Our compact driver is compatible with the Zen Toolworks CNC DIY kits and is custom designed to fit, but you can use it anywhere, such as to drive other stepper motors you may be using.

2010 3xDriverCardF.jpg


Basic Configuration

Identify motor wires

Stepper motors shipped with our CNC machine kit are 2 phase 4 wires. First, you will need to identify which wire is A, A-, B or B-. For a 2 phase 4 wire stepper motor, it is very easy to do that, but you do need to have a multimeter for this job.

Simple enough, A and A- are connected to each other. B and B- are also connected. Which one is A or A-, and B or B- doesn't matter. If you switch A and A-, the motor will run in another direction, but if you switch A and B, the motor will not move.

Note down the wire color when you finish.  

Wire stepper motors to the driver

To make the setup easy, we suggest that you do this with the stepper motors unmounted to the machine. 

Now you can connect all three motors to the driver board follow the letters marked on the driver board. Make sure the connection is secure, and no short bridge. This step is critical, so be careful and double check before you power the driver up.

Connect the power supply to the driver

Make sure that the power supply is not on!!

Our driver can use the DC power supply up to 24V. For the stepper motors we are using, a 12 V power supply will give enough power to drive the machine. Low voltage will make the driver and stepper motors cooler. 

Double check all connections.

Initial test of the driver

Now turn the power supply on, you should see that all stepper motors get locked( You cannot turn the shaft easily).

Now turn the power supply off.

Connect the parallel cable between the desktop computer and the driver board.

Wire spindle motor to the relay terminal on the driver

This board provide a feature that will let you control the spindle on and off from Mach3 or other controller software. You do need to provide your own relay to make this work. The board itself will just output a 5V singal to trigger the relay. The pin number used for spindle control is #14. Here is how you setup the pin in Mach3 configuration: (image to follow) And here is how you can test the spindle settings from Mach3: Use a multimeter test the voltage from the spindle relay output of the board. (image to follow) Toggle the spindle on/off button from Mach3. (image to follow) You can see the 5 volt output being turned on and off accordingly. (image to follow) If the on and off is not signaled as expected, change the active low in the output pin configuration. (image to follow)

Create new profile in Mach3

Click on the Mach3 Loader to start the Mach3. Create a new profile in Mach3.

Mach3 native unit setup

When Mach3 is loaded, go to "config->select unit", select the either mm or inch.

Mach3 step/dir pin configuration

Coming soon...

Mach3 motor tuning

Coming soon...

Mach3 eStop configuration

Coming soon...

Mach3 Spindle configuration

Coming soon...

Jogging from Mach3

Coming soon...

Turn spindle on and off from Mach3

Coming soon...

Advanced Configuration

Home/Limit Switch Setup with Mach3

Coming soon...

Home/Limit Switch Setup with EMC2

Coming soon...

Digital Probe Setup with Mach3

Coming soon...

Wiring Diagram

2010 3x Driver Wiring.jpg

Previous Versions

3-Axis 2008 Driver Card

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