Firmware and stepper drivers

I have my Lowrider just about finished, just waiting for pulley and screw drives.

I ordered the following kit from Amazon:

Longruner GRBL CNC Shield Expansion Board V3.0 +UNO R3 Board + A4988 Stepper Motor Driver with Heatsink for Arduino Kits (3D Printer kit)

As you can see it comes with the A4988 stepper driver which I understand is only 1/16 seconds rather than the DRV8825 drivers which are 1/32 seconds.


Which firmware will I need in order to make these drivers work?


I should mention that I do have a set of DVR8825’s but they are too large to fit my Mega 2560 board. The pins fit, but the actual board is too large.





AFAIK, you can’t run Marlin on that. At least not without a lot of work. So you should install grbl. Grbl configures everything by commands after you’ve flashed (mostly) so just install the normal grbl and look through the options. There aren’t as many on grbl.

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Thanks jeffed3. I should have said that the stepper drivers would not fit on the ramps board.

I have since discovered that the A4988’s also don’t fit on the board! I have sent a message to the vendor but think I will just return the kit for a refund.

Are you saying that Marlin won’t work on the ATMEGA 2560? I have just recently read that GRBL won’t work on the 2560 board.


I also have an UNO board and a CNC shield that takes the DRV8825’s but I am not sure if I have them installed the correct way around. (Photos attached) Also, I am not sure if I can connect a LCD to this board. Do I need an LCD or can I use a computer connected to the UNO usb?


I am starting to feel way over my head here!!!



Marlin works on the 2560, but the ramps board is what determines which pins the steppers are mounted on, it has the hardware for some other parts, etc. I don’t think Marlin will work on the grbl board, because there isn’t a configuration for it, and you might find some things that Marlin needs (at least it used to need an extruder, heaters, temperature guages).

There is a version of Grbl for RAMPS and even a grbl for RAMBO and miniRAMBO. They aren’t in the main code, they are forks and there are posts here about them.

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Grbl does not support an LCD (that I know of).

I always try to match the ground to ground pins when installing drivers. I never remember which way they go.

I received a reply from the vendor of the kit. He told me to sand the ends of the stepper drivers. I did this and was able to mount them on the board.



This is a different topic/issue, but I am having problems navigating these forums.


Have the revised firmware, for 6 step drivers uploaded. Still waiting for parts so I played with estlcam this morning. I generated some gcode and saved it to an SD card. It was my impression that the Smart Controler was able to run this gcode. When I put the SD card into the controller, it said media inserted. However, I could not see any files on the card.




Make sure the files have a .gcode extension not .nc

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Thank you Ryan, that was the problem.

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Just to help people in the future where should I put that info? This has come up a few times. I only have that listed in the estlcam instructions but sounds like I need to add it somewhere?

Are there instructions for running from the LCD?

Is there a page for different Command & Control options (Octoprint, CNC.js, Repetier, SD+LCD, etc.)? That would be the place for this bit (and a giant flashing warning about not using ESTLCAM to move the machine).

Regarding the .gcode vs .nc issue specifically: is there a patch one could throw into marlin to allow that extension (or does that create more problems than it solves)?