Arduino CNC Plotter Basic Description:
The CNC plotter is based on the controller which automates the control of machine tools and one of its popular applications is in 3D printing. This CNC plotter has movement along all three axis that is X axes, Y axes and Z axes, the two stepper motors are employed for controlling the mounting base and the pen holder along X axes and Y axes respectively and the servo motor is employed to control the movement of the pen holder along Z axes. The motor controller is used to drive the stepper motors as microcontroller cannot supply enough current to drive the motors. Arduino microcontroller development board is used which acts as the brain of the CNC plotter and controls all the motors simultaneously in order to accomplish a particular task. The basic electronic components employed in the system are:
- Arduino UNO.
- L298 motor driver IC.
- Stepper motors.
- Servo motor and
- Bread board.
Paste the pictures of the components here.
Working Principle of CNC Plotter:
The paper on which the text is to be printed is mounted on the mounting base; the mounting base is attached to stepper motor which controls the precise movement of the base along X axes and thus in this way alphabets or numerals are written from left to right or from right to left.
In a similar way the pen holder holds the pen of any width and is attached to the second stepper motor which precisely control the movement of the pen along Y-axes thus in this way the alphabets or numerals are written from top to bottom of the page and vice versa.
Last but not the least is the servo motor which controls the movement of the pen holder along Z axes. As the pen needs to be lifted from the page in order to move to the next character so we need a mechanism to lift the pen from the paper and this task is done by the servo motor. The angle to which the shaft of the servo motor is to be moved is precisely calibrated so that the nib of the pen could not tear the paper. The movement of all motors is calibrated and it is controlled by the Arduino UNO. The overall CNC plotter assembly is as shown in the following image:
CNC Plotter Software:
CNC plotter software is an integral part of the system as it determines the measure of the extent to which the mounting base or pen holder is to be moved along their corresponding axis in order to print the text. The program of the CNC plotter is developed in the Arduino IDE (Integrated Development Environment) using the stepper motor and servo motor library. Complete code for the CNC plotter is given below:
That is all for now I hope this tutorial would be helpful for you. In the next blog I will come up with another interesting tutorial, till then stay connected, keep reading and enjoy learning.