I'm picking this project back up again. Well, starting to anyway.
I gave up on hacking the original controller. I remain convinced it *could* be done the way I intended. I should have taken more care in taking it apart however. Inside the plastic casing were metal clips that connected various points on the board. The problem is they fell out when I cracked the plastic casing open and I wasn't able to figure out where they belonged, LOL.
So, I went the easy route and just bought a motor controller. I got this one from Ebay, just over $20 shipped. http://cgi.ebay.com/12V-15A-DC-Motor...item3cb455fb5a
Yep... easy beat cheap this time.
It works just dandy, and I figured out a way to short the pot so I can use a momentary switch to kick it in to full speed mode. (Rapid). Plenty of torque even at low speeds.
So, here follows the stream-of-consciousness brainstorming session... LOL.
1) Main power... probably one of those "Fighter pilot" flip switches as a pseudo emergency stop.
2) An indicator light... I will forget it is on.
3) Direction. Left/right.
4) Speed dial.
5) Go baby GO! (Rapid)
Hmm, anything else that would be handy?
I'm also debating whether I want the controls on the powerfeed unit, on the mill head or maybe even a pendant? Hmmm... nah, I have enough crap hanging out on my mill bench, pendant would just be something else to get tangled in.
I have an extra table end like goes on the handwheel side. I got it once upon a time to see if I could work the bearing arrangement in to the Y axis. Turns out that wasn't very feasible, but it was only $6 and I got it shipped with some other stuff from Grizzly so the total wasn't much more.
18 P8689018 Y-AXIS BEARING SEAT $6.00
(Although it's really the X axis bearing seat.)
I'm thinking/hoping I can bolt that to the other side of the table as a bushing/mounting block for this thing. If it works out I will probably try drilling 2 hole "pockets" to mount 2 round stock rails in there as a slide for the motor. Then the motor can slide in/out on rails and just engage the split end on the leadscrew. Hmmm, add a spring and a cam and it may really be just that easy? Mounting the motor should be pretty straight forward... it has two screws holding the clutch mechanism in place already. Simply remove and re-assemble after passing the screws through a mounting plate.
Hmm, I will need a solid table stop as well to overcome the clutch... right now the X can just screw off the end of the leadscrew. The table cap may fix that issue, though.... matter of fact Im pretty sure it does.
Finally... Id love to get it to sit flush with, or slightly under the top of the table. That way I can throw something long on there without interference.
OK... stream done... for the moment, LOL.
(Edit.. Not counting what was on hand and and not otherwise being used the total is now: $27
$21 Motor control
$6 DPDT switch