Creating an USB network drive for Haas VF4ss milling machine. Part 1: General idea.

So, here’s the situation. We bought our machine from ABAlbanalp few years back. The initial machine spec included network card for the mill. It turned out I didn’t check the final spec for that one thing, and it was not included in the package. Now, we asked them for a quote and it was more than 2K euros for the network card. We lived for quite a long time with this situation without network card. We’ve been running back and forth with USB drive from our programming station to our machine with gcode programs to mill anything.

Yup, this is annoying. And also prevents you from structuring your code well, so we had few mistakes and scrapped parts just because of that.

Here’s the plan to fix the situation:

  1. Get a Raspbery Nano W
  2. Install system on Raspbery – we need network access and ssh ability
  3. ssh to raspbery
  4. Set up raspbery as a usb drive
  5. Set up network drive on our Raspbery
  6. Set up watchdog to make sure Haas sees changes on the drive(reconnect the drive as needed).
  7. We may set up a script to rsync files to drive, or just use windows features to access network drive.

Here’s a general idea: