Electrical Parts

Here I will give you lots of information on the electrical parts for the Alfamill. Automation Technology has a lot of parts that work great on the Alfamill. Other companies may also have parts that would work. I like the Gecko G540 drive for this project and recommend you use it too. The G540 can be purchased from many places and sometimes you will see new ones on ebay at a good price.

The stepper motors NEMA23 382oz/in 3.0A Stepper Motor 1/4 Dual shaft (KL23H2100-30-4B) These stepper motors have a lot of power and they are a great match for the Gecko G540 controller.

CNC Control Box KL-G540-48 4 Axis CNC Controller with 48V, 12.5A (115/230VAC) I have not tried this control box but it looks like a quick way to get your machine up and running. You can build your own control box if you like. I use a Unregulated Linear 625W/48VDC/13A Toroidal PSU (KL-4813) in my control box. Using a power supply that puts out 48 volts DC and in the 12 to 13 amp range is what you are looking for when using the Gecko G540 with the motors mentioned.

G540 Motor Cable, 12 feet This wire has a connector on one end to save a little time wiring up the motors. You can cut it to the size you need. Other wires can be used but keep the size around 18 gauge and it should be shielded.

Another thing needed is 1 Current set resistor for each drive. This is a simple 1/4 watt resistor that is connected to pins 1 and 5. It is easy to solder this resistor into the DB9 connectors that come with the G540. With the recommended motors you need a 3K 5% 1/4W resistor for each motor. 3 resistors in all.

Here is a link to the Manual for the G540 drive. It has a lot of great information on setting up you system if you want to build your own control box for your machine. There is a wiring diagram that shows just how easy it is to wire up everything if feel like doing it yourself. One thing I want to mention is the emergency stop switch. You always want to use a emergency stop switch that is always on when the switch button is not pushed in. This way if the wires ever got damaged leading to the switch your machine would not run. Doing it this way makes sure your machine will not run if the E stop switch is not working. Better safe than sorry.

Once you have your control box and motors wired up and the software for Mach3 running it is time to tune the motors. Check out my video on Motor tuning with the Gecko G540 drive. Always use a small screwdriver made of plastic. Never insert a metal blade screwdriver into the Gecko drive for motor tuning. You can short out the drive if you use a metal screwdriver. Don’t ask how I know. Darn, know you know.