In trying to keep it simple I built the machine for minimal effort to operate. The lower set of controls consist of three pushbutton switches and a joystick. The joystick function is simple-it allows the user to move the X and Y axis manually. It is nice if you want to set up something on the table to avoid material waste and also useful to manually rip sheet stock into strips or just straight line cutting without any CnC control. A DB15 connector is also installed to allow the user to connect a large analog joystick for freehand cutting or engraving. The Z axis can be run up and down via 2 of the pushbuttons. A third pushbutton runs a built in table calibration if some table is alignment is suspected. Pushing in on the joystick sends all axis to the home position. The home position is part of every program and all axis return automatically home after each part is done,however of the joystick is used manually it can be done manually.
A pot control is installed to control router motor speed(markings show recommended settings for material/bit size and also laser power control.
The remaining pushbuttons shown on the upper left are imported part programs. These switches will be replaced with a 16 key keypad in the final version and the user can upload multiple designs and select from them when desired. An LCD soon to be added will display which parts have been uploaded and what button to press to make that part as well as show progress and inform the user which tool needs to be mounted on the Z axis to manufacture it. This will be a nice neat tidy solution that will allow first time users easy access to their part formation. In the end version all buttons may be moved to the keypad for simplicity and ease of manufacture with the exception of the joystick and power control.
I am pretty sure as this evolves it will get streamlined more for ease and simplicity of building it. This prototype has already yielded lots of new ideas for the next version.