FYI we are building a metal machining capable CNC in Sparkleforge! While the hardware and electronics have been mostly set up, we have hit some roadblocks with software, parallell port drivers, and old windows operating systems. The software we are trying to install is called Mach3 or Mach4, and the particular breakout board we are using is wired with a parallell port (https://www.cnc4pc.com/c10-bi-directional-parallel-port-interface-card.html). If you happen to have experience with the above software/drivers or can maybe help install windows xp 32 bit on the old old computer next to the CNC it would be much appreciated! We could really use some more eyes/noses looking into it. If you see someone working on it please feel free to stop by and say hi.
We are generally open to using Henner’s beagleg, machinekit, or linuxcnc in the long run since it’s open source, but for now people seem to think Mach3/Mach4 running on these old windows computers is the way to go (albeit a bit painful right now). Feel free to poke around if you have computer experience. Tormod (visiting from the UK), Matt, and Kap are currently working on it and we are trying to recruit anyone who is interested or curious!
PS: the type of machine we are converting to CNC is pretty popular and is called the “Sieg X3”. You can find lots of videos of people’s builds on YouTube, including this fancy one with a tool changer: https://youtu.be/YfD0O3O9_Qo