When first connecting to the Arduino UNO com port, the first thing to set is the Gcode Dir. (Directory) where your gcode files are stored on your PC. This is important so PicSender knows where to locate them for loading files to run. Clicking on that setting will open up a window to select this location. After setting the gcode files location, an Editor button will appear. PicSender uses your Windows default text editor for this purpose.
To create your own gcode file, select the Editor button and it will open a text file called blank.txt. Type in your gcode commands and select Save As and name it to what you wish, then close the text editor. A message will come up asking if you wish to Load an edited file. Selecting Yes will open the Directory where you set your gcode files to be stored. You can then load the gcode file you just created, or load a different file. Selecting No will just close the message.
The Editor feature can also be used to edit a gcode file already loaded into PicSender to run. After loading a gcode file in PicSender, select the Editor button and the file will open up in your text editor. After editing the file, close the editor and it will ask if you want to save your changes. After saving it PicSender will come up with a message if you want to Load changed file. Selecting Yes will update the loaded file with the new changes made. Selecting No will not update the changes unless you load the same file again into PicSender.Pause/Resume.
The Pause button will not appear until you select Send to start streaming a gcode file. We have tested this extensively with raster photo engraving gcode files and now the user can Pause/Resume streaming at anytime during the run without any noticeable effects/burn marks to your photo engraving. GRBL PWM Code must be selected when laser engraving. If GRBL Z Code is selected instead, the Resume will have a delay of movement after the Laser comes on and the PWM will be set at full 5v from D11 for turning on a relay for Spindle control. The delay after Resuming is for a Spindle to have the time to spin up to full RPM before continuing to run the job. Do not use the GRBL Z Code option with a Laser!
With vector cutting/engraving files, Pausing a job may have a long delay before it stops, because grbl must clear the buffer first of any streamed commands before it can Pause.
The vector gcode files need to have the S power commands on every line of gcode, so when Resuming your project it sets the laser's
power again when it continues to run. GRBL 9g does not report S values back to a gcode streaming program to be re-executed again when Resuming.
As everyone knows, raster laser engraving or 3D spindle engraving can take a very long time to finish and it's never recommended to leave any CNC machine running unattended. Now if you need to walk away from your Machine for a period of time, just Pause your job. When you return, select Resume and it will continue with your project.
In this engraving below, we Paused and Resumed the laser engraving 30 total times and there are no noticeable burn marks from stopping the engraving process and continuing again to run.CFR (Change Feed Rate)
When running a gcode file, PicSender now gives you the ability to change the feedrate as it's streaming. The feedrate will change after the current commands are cleared from the buffer and they will be active until the feedrate is changed again by the next F value in the gcode file. When using our Feed Rate Change feature to enhance/expand shades for laser engraving photos, or when used with spindle gcode & small engraving bits, the CFR will not effect the running feedrate because there are F commands on every line of gcode in the file. Increased Streaming Performance.
With a feedrate gcode test file we have created that we know the exact perimeter (travel), our previous version of PicSender would max out at 175IPM (4445mm/min) with this raster gcode test file. The actual feedrate is calculated by the run time and travel distance. This file has a short step over & step ahead in X&Y gcode command moves of .006" (.1524mm). Our latest version of PicSender can now stream the same gcode file at 205IPM max (5207mm/min) which is a feedrate increase of 17%.Tool Position Setting Menu
This feature is only available in PicSender when connecting to grbl v9i and above and only when using the GRBL Z Code option for a spindle. Select the Info button in the Tool Position Setting Menu for instructions how to wire a Tool Setting Plate to an Arduino UNO and the setting to use in the menu. Safe Z
This feature was introduced in our previous PicSender version 2.2.4. It's very important that Spindle users set this because when Canceling a job, it will retract your tool to a set height above your Z axis Zero place before returning back to the X&Y Zero positions. This option is only available when GRBL Z Code is selected. Do not use GRBL PWM Code for Spindles!
John for making all these new features possible.