FAQs

Support

If you have any sales questions, they can be directed to brian(a)hobbycnc.com.

All post-purchase support is handled through the FAQ’s (below) and our HobbyCNC Yahoo! support group (with over 3,500 members).

Access to the Advanced Technical Support FAQ will be provided when you place an order.  A link to the Yahoo support group should have been provided in your order confirmation acknowledgement.  If it was not, please email brian(a)hobbycnc.com with your order information.

This FAQ and support group is available for customers who purchase product directly from us. 2nd, 3rd, etc owners are not eligible for support here or through our Yahoo hosted group.

Sales and Ordering

Comparison of HobbyCNC Driver Products

HobbyCNC offers two controller boards, the HobbyCNC PRO and the HobbyCNC EZ.  The HobbyCNC PRO board can be ordered in a 3 or 4 axis variant.

Feature Comparison Matrix

 HobbyCNC EZHobbyCNC PRO 3 axisHobbyCNC Pro 4 axis
# of Axis334
4th axis upgradeNoYesN/A
Size4.8" x 3.6"
(122 x 91.5mm)
6.8" x 3.7"
(173 x 94mm)
Idle Current
Reduction
NoYes
Input Voltage24VDC typ
36 VDC max,
12VDC min
36VDC typ
42 VDC max,
12VDC min
Current
(per phase)
3.0 Amps max
600ma (.6A) min
3.0 Amps max
500ma (.5A) min
MicrosteppingYes
1/1, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, and 1/16
Steppers Supported5, 6, or 8 wire steppers (4 wire not usable)
Home/Limit switch
connections
Yes
Shipping charges outside the United States

Shipping charges shown on the checkout screen are for delivery within the US only.

For shipments outside the US, a shipping and handling charge will be calculated and you will be informed via email of the additional charge.  If this is acceptable, make the additional payment.  Once payment is received, your product will ship.

Important: review the Ordering page for more details.

 

Basic Trouble Shooting

Do a thorough visual inspection

After each assembly step, before initial power-up and whenever you experience some problem, a thorough visual inspection will often solve 50% of the problems.

Use magnification and good lighting
Make sure you have good lighting and use some type of inspection loupe or, ideally, an inspection microscope (if you are so lucky) and carefully and methodically inspect every connection on the board – paying close attention to any adjacent solder joints (bridging).

Solder Joints
There can be many variations in a solder joint – some are mainly aesthetic (too much/little solder), some are ‘time bombs’ (cold joints) which can work for a while, then at some future date, just ‘crap out’.  Here is an excellent overview of solder joint issues by adafruit.

Solder Bridges
An unintentional ‘blob’ of solder that ‘bridges’ (connects) two pads that are geographically close together.  Most often these can be repaired with a quick touch of a cleaned soldering iron.  Egregious bridges may require a solder sucker or solder wick.

Screw Terminals
It is possible to “torque the hell” out of one of the screws and break the associated solder connection.  Look closely (use magnification)

Have the proper equipment

Having the proper equipment before attempting to assemble the PCB is strongly recommended.  At a minimum you will need:

  • Soldering Iron
  • Solder
  • Diagonal Cutters
  • Solder Sucker / Solder Wick
  • Wire strippers
  • Volt meter
  • Small needle-nose pliers
  • Something to hold the board (nice, but not necessary)

The Adafruit site has an excellent article and tutorial that is highly recommended for any newbies.

 

 

Support for Foam PRO and old HobbyCNC product

Foam Cutting

The HobbyCNC FoamPro product has been discontinued and support and spare parts are no longer available.  All available documentation has been released in the files section of the HobbyCNC Yahoo Support Group.  I do not have access to schematics for these products.

For foam cutting, excellent options do exist.  The HobbyCNC PRO 4-axis board with: