Duet3D as stand alone CNC mill controller?
I am looking for a controller to run an openbuilds C-BEAM machine, and am wondering about the potential to use a duet. I'm curious if the duet supports external drivers for motor movement, and if so, what firmware modifications would have to take place to make this happen. If this is possible, it would be very interesting to have a duet powered mill. The power system for the external drives would be 36V, so a step down would be necessary for the duet, if this is possible. Thanks!
Yes you can use external drivers, see https://duet3d.com/wiki/Using_external_stepper_motor_drivers#Using_External_Drivers_for_X.2FY.2FZ_Axis. There is an interface board to make it easier to connect external drivers, https://www.duet3d.com/DuetAddons/Expansion_Breakout, but many external drivers will work connected directly to the expansion connector.
Also worth noting is that the generation 2 Duets can drive some types of NEMA 23 motor directly.
I'm using the Expansion Breakout board with some Automation Technologies Inc. Microstep Drives (KL-4042D) https://www.automationtechnologiesinc.com/wp-content/uploads/downloads/2014/05/KL-4042D.pdf and it's working well. I can send upload some pictures of the wiring if it helps.