Is it possible to enable/lock the stepper motors with LB?

Hey! Is there an option in LB to lock/hold/energize and unlock the steppers, to hold their positions?

The axes on the D1 seem to have sections where there is resistance and some where it is free, and so the gantry will tend to creep when it is manually moved by hand to a location. I would like to be able to move the head to a position, whether by hand or in the software and then click “motor hold” and have it locked to that position to prevent it from creeping away. Same problem with the rotary axis, except it’s when engraving things that aren’t balanced, like a mug with a heavy handle.

Any help with this would be awesome!

There is a GRBL configuration $1 that sets the idle delay before stepper motors are disengaged. Setting this to 255 keeps motors always enabled. However, xTool firmware prevents any GRBL changes so this option won’t be available to you.

However, if this is the case I suggest you sort out mechanically what is causing the areas that bind. You really want this to be consistently free moving. Even if you try to work around the issue it will likely cause other artifacts that aren’t immediately apparent.

The motor shouldn’t be shutting off during the burn, only at idle time so not sure why this would be the case. Are you sure the slipping is in the motor and not along the roller?

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Thanks for the reply. I’m not sure there will be much I can do about it mechanically, since they use rods pressed into the frame for rails and I’m guess that they aren’t uniformly pressed in. Guess I’ll see. It’s a good machine but there are definitely some glaring issues with its mechanics.

As for the rotary, it’s not an issue when it’s operating, only when the motor is disengaged/idle there isn’t enough tension to prevent it from rolling.

If I can’t modify the firmware to hold the motors longer maybe I can just send a command from the terminal to hold them instead.

Thanks for your help

I thought about it most of the day at work, and you were totally right about sorting out the mechanical issue that was producing the tight spots. As soon as I got home I got into it and it turned out that the rod that connects the y axis motor to the right side was bent and thats what I was feeling. I used a dial indicator and got it very close to straight, and now it runs much smoother when moving the gantry by hand. It would be really nice to still be able to lock the motors, but I’m pleased with the results of straightening the drive shaft. Thanks for the kick in the a$$.


Awesome outcome. I think you’ll see gains from addressing the root issue down the line so nice that you were able to identify it.

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