Off-the-shelf Limit Switches for Shark HD Pro Plus

Off-the-shelf Limit Switches for Shark HD Pro Plus

Postby SwissArmyKnife » Fri Mar 10, 2017 4:09 pm

Hi. I've owned my Shark HD Pro Plus for roughly 5 years and have repeatedly Googled this topic. I occasionally find someone with an idea, or someone with enough electronics and programming experience to have successfully modified their CNC with limit switches. But I am a dunce when it comes to circuit-level electronics. So, I am looking for an off-the-shelf installation experience; I don't want to ruin a working machine by experimenting.

Does anyone know of a tried-and-true method that can be easily and safely implemented that will allow me to install limit switches (and, if possible, an automatic homing feature) on my Shark HD Pro Plus? Better yet, does anyone know the vendor and part number of a kit that includes all that an idiot like me needs to install limit & homing switches to my HD Pro Plus?

Many thanks.
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Re: Off-the-shelf Limit Switches for Shark HD Pro Plus

Postby 4DThinker » Sat Mar 11, 2017 3:43 pm

I've also had a Shark Pro for several years now, and have looked into adding limit switches more than once. It would mean abandoning the Shark controller, replacing it with either a TinyG or something bigger/better that supports limit switch inputs. Then adding a minimum of 5 switches (X+/-, Y+/-, and Z+) and 2-lead cables running back to the controller from each. Not impossible, but not a simple add-on kit either. All limit switches can be mounted on the gantry with the Z+ being farthest up the cable chain.

I understand why you want limit switches, but also haven't really needed them on either my Shark or the one I oversee at work. Their latest controller software gives a plan view of the toolpaths you have loaded into it, and dynamically shows where the bit is as it jogs/moves around. Once I've set ZYZ=0 I simply jog the bit to the limits of the preview screen to verify I won't be exceeding any hardware limit, and if I do then I'll re-clamp the work closer to the middle until I'm sure no limit will be hit while cutting.

I also have a Probotix Meteor with limits and e-stop. It is run by LinuxCNC on a Linux PC. You could buy the Linux PC and controller from Probotix to run your Shark, but it would require changing all the cable plug ends to match jacks on their controller box.

4D
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Re: Off-the-shelf Limit Switches for Shark HD Pro Plus

Postby Kayvon » Wed Mar 15, 2017 5:05 pm

I'm with 4D on this. As an avid Shark owner, I'd love to beef it up with addons like limit switches. The main problem for me is the lack of controller support for any switches. Since limiting hasn't ever been too much of a problem, except on a couple early projects, it's just not worth changing controllers and losing the Shark's software support.
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