Paint, wiring improvements and software configuration issues
Made a bit more progress last night. I made the wiring a bit neater and put two coats of gray paint onto the machine’s wooden base-plate. The paint will prevent oil from the lead screw from soaking into the wood.
I also cut an access hatch (hole) into the base-plate that is large enough to allow adjustments and maintenance to the underside of the cutter-carriage without its removal from the machine. I made a sheet metal hatch cover and screwed it over the hole.
Finally, but most importantly, I started to try to get TurboCNC software configured to work with the FET-3 controller board from Stepperworld. I played around with the setting for an hour or so, but could not get TurboCNC to talk to the board. I will email Stepperworld today for TurboCNC configuration hints. I will also try KCAM software tonight.
I "jogged" the machine a bit more with the Stepperworld testing software too. I noticed that the lead-screw shows some deflection when the cutter head is between 2 and 3 feet from the stepper-motor. Probably means that the cutter-head carriage is too tight on the rails. May need some adjustment. This machine is definitely the maximum size possible with the thin 1/4" lead-screw.