LightBurn to cnc router

This is kind of a HW SW question, but thought I would start here.

So I have a CNC router that runs off Win XP to a C1 breakout bd. I can use Aspire to generate Gcode and make my laser work. However I’d really like to use LB. So if I build a Win7 box (cause I read LB doesn’t run on XP) use a Warp9 Ethernet Smooth stepper will LB see my machine. I looked through the list on lasergods and didn’t see anything like that.


What software are you using? Some kind of OS-based CNC controller working through the smooth stepper?

If it’s that or Mach3, then no.

Get a $50 GRBL board and dump all that stuff, just make sure it has pins for external stepper controllers.

If you get a fancier one, like a Smoothieboard, you can do even fancier things , especially on the CNC side.

Mach3 is the motion controller in your case, and as far as I know there is no option to directly control it from other software. You could use LightBurn to generate GCode that you save to disk, then load into Mach3 to have it run the machine.

Even Smoothstepper boards aren’t quite a controller - they rely on Mach3 to do the bulk of the work, and then Mach sends position & speed updates to the board every millisecond and the board runs from that. The board doesn’t do motion planning on its own.

If I understand correctly Mach3 is the interface in this case to the UC100 USB CNC Motion controller via a plugin. IDK how difficult or even if possible it would be to interface to the UC100, UC300ETH or UC400ETH from Lightburn but it would surely open up a new market for Lightburn. I know when I got my first laser diode I quickly moved away from Mach 3 due to it being obsolete and difficult to get working correctly with my laser. Might be worth getting with the folks over at cncdrive to discuss?

I had a conversation with them once, and they weren’t interested in offering anything other than their SDK, which is too limiting - That would mean only Windows, probably only Windows 64 bit, and would require linking the SDK and all its dependencies into LightBurn, which could introduce conflicts with other libraries we use.

If they were willing to give me the commands required to talk to the device, then I could implement it for all the platforms we support, but that assumes that the controller is actually a controller, and not just a ‘playback device’, which most things that use Mach3 are.

Well, I wasn’t really looking so much to control it, but to setup light burn to output G-Code to my laser.
I might look into a whole separate system for the laser if things pan out.


If you can tell me what kind of GCode it would need to drive a laser from it, I can tell you if there’s a profile in LightBurn that could output that format. The GRBL-M3 device in LightBurn produces very generic code, so there’s a chance that would work.

well I use Mach3 as my controller right now. Currently I have done a couple simple items in Aspire and used the plugin to drop it to mach3 gcode. I got the plugin from Jtech page

Get something like this( ) and put GRBL on it and move on. Lightburn and many other GCode generators/senders work with GRBL.

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