Step 1: Route the belts

Feed each end of the x-axis belts down through the center channels in the two gantry columns. Then route the belts under the idler pulleys. Ensure there are no twists inside the extrusions. The belt teeth should be facing down towards the bed.

Step 2: Secure the belts

Secure both ends of each belt to a belt clip using a belt sleeve and the same method used when securing the y-axis belt. Then attach the belt clips to the raised bed using two wood screws. The belt clip tabs should be extending over the outside of the bed to serve as hardstops against the gantry wheel plates.

Just like tying your shoes

When tightening and securing the belts and belt clips, use the same amount of force you would use to tie your shoes. There should be no slack in the system once the belt sleeve is in place.

Do not overtighten

Overtightening the belts may result in the front wheels of the gantry lifting off of the raised bed. If you notice this, loosen the belts slightly so that the gantry rests and rolls on the bed with all four wheels.

Step 3: Attach the x-axis cable carrier

Lay the loaded x-axis cable carrier onto the bed’s cable carrier support. Fasten it to the bed with two wood screws and to the cable carrier mount with two M3 x 16mm flat head screws and M3 locknuts.

Step 4: Equalize the gantry

An equalized gantry is one that is exactly perpendicular to the long edges of the wood raised bed that FarmBot runs along.

A crooked or torqued gantry can cause creaking, extra wear, and introduce a high amount of friction into the system that might result in motor stalls. It also just looks bad.

To equalize the gantry, first ensure that the x-axis motors are unpowered. For first time installation this will always be the case because we haven’t yet plugged everything in!

Gently push or pull on the gantry from the middle of the gantry main beam such that it moves slowly along the raised bed about 30cm. This process will remove any torque on the gantry, and ensure it is not crooked. If you push or pull the gantry from one of the gantry columns, or anywhere that is not the middle of the main beam, then you will torque the gantry and make it crooked. Don’t do that!

If you were equalizing the gantry as part of routine maintenance, remember to FIND HOME X after equalization.

What’s next?