Mach3/Warp9 Hardware

I have a self built CNC that uses MACH3 CAM and a Warp9 G-Code controller that works well with both router and laser and now I want to try the Lightburn software to see if it’s any better. (I have been using Fusion360 and Inkscape CAD). What I would like to know is, will Lightburn work with my hardware and if so, what device settings should I use?
Thanks in advance

We can’t control it directly, as Mach3 is the controller, and doesn’t play nice with other software. You might be able to export GCode from LightBurn that would be compatible. If you know which commands are used to enable / disable the laser, and how to set power, I can tell you if we have a device profile that could work.

OK Thanks. I need to export the G code to Mach3 from my CAD anyway. It uses M10 to turn the laser off and M11 to turn it on. I have not setup a PWM control yet so I use 100% power. So far I have used the laser mostly for cutting so not sure how the PWM control works yet

Have you found a way to be successful with this? I have a very similar set up and have the same questions. M11/10 work very well but my current software (Inkscape) is limited in what I would like to do and I’m looking for a better option.

I have PWM control set up within Mach3 using the M11Px and M10Px commands. This works very well without any delay like use of M3/M5.

I would also like to be able to generate G-code within light burn and use Mach 3 to run this code on my smoothstpper controlled CNC.

After doing a bit more research it seems that LightBurn has a G-code version for this type of use. Is it possible that this might work with my system? I understand that lightburn will not control the system. This is fine, this is the same way that I currently use inkscape for laser and Fusion 360 for router projects.

Has anyone been successful with this?

Not at all, unfortunately. You could get Lightburn to produce the G Code then manually replace the M3/M5 with M10/M11 with a global command but I haven’t tried this yet. I have been using Gimp to prepare an image then save it as .svg then load it into Inkscape then use the “305 Engineering Raster to Laser Generator” extension to produce the G Code for Mach3. Works so far.

Forgot to mention to use GRBL-M3 as the laser device

I have inkscape 1.0 installed right now. Unfortunately the 305 engineering extension only work with version .92. I may have to uninstall 1.0 and go back to .92 for inkscape to see if I can get his two work.

Also unfortunately my lightburn trial has expired. I have emailed them about trying to extend the trial, so we will see what they say.

It would be fairly easy to do a edit : find/replace with M3/?5 and M11/M10 if the code actually works.

I had to go back to the .92 version also for the same reason but I find it is fine for the work that I do.
You may need to do a bit more than replace the M commands but it shouldn’t be too much. Trial and error seems to be the norm with these machines. Please let me know if you have any success.
I am currently building a new CO2 laser that will have a Ruida controller so I will go to the Lightburn then.

I have been experimenting with Lightburn trying to make it work with Mach3. Before you say Mach3 doesn’t work with laser you should do your research. It works very well with PWM control using M11 and M10 for on/off. M11/10 do not have the built in lag time that M3/M5 have when used in mach 3. It is tricky to set up but it does work. To be fully transparent I have not yet used it for rastering photos. This is still new for me.

To get Lightburn to talk to Mach 3 you need to set up a device manually. When you do this select GRBL-M3 as the output format. see this link for how to set up a manual device. Manual device

You must have M11/10 set up and working in Mach 3 ahead of time. I have a set up guide written for this that works with my specific system. It may or may not work for your system but could be used as a starting point to get PWM with M11/10 working. I am not able to upload the PDF document to this post.

After you save your g-code you must do some edits to the code. In a text editor use the find and replace function to change the M3 commands to M11 Px Sx to turn your laser on. Repeat this with M5 and replace all M5 commands with M10

find the ; Layer C00 commands in the code and delete these

Delete the M8 or M7 code to turn your air on. I do the manually you may or may not need to do this.

I also added
As a closing code block

I then saved the file as a .nc file

Hopefully this can be followed and verified. This worked very well.

I have also been told by the Lightburn folks:

“We’re planning to make a non-connecting, fully customizable GCode generator, but that’s still a few months out. We’ll have an option before then to export GCode that strips all comments, but we don’t have that yet either.”

Hi. Thanks for that info. Looks like you have been successful.

I have been using the M10/M11 commands successfully with the laser for a while now but don’t have PWM set up so I don’t use the Pxx or Sxxx commands… yet. Just run it 100%. Working on that.

I am also still trying to learn the G code to use for PWM

When I get the PWM working I will try again with your suggestions and advice.

Thanks again

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