LightBurn and Mini Gerbil Tips

There are some settings in LightBurn that you might want to tweak in order to get the best out of both. This article describes how to configure LightBurn to get optimum results. The connection device you choose in new device is not critical. You can choose Gerbil or Grbl-M3 (uses just easy Gcode). Even the other profiles seem to work well.

Set the Baud Rate to 230400 (LightBurn release <0.9.00)

By increasing the Baud rate you can get faster engraving speeds, it removes the communication bottle neck. Select Device Settings and choose the appropriate Baud Rate. Not this is now automatically set in LightBurn releases past 0.9.0.0 and cannot be altered (which kind of sucks, sigh).

Lightburn instructions
here’s how to get maximum speed in Lightburn

Set the Grid settings to mm/min

For some reason, setting the grid settings from mm/s to mm/min gives a better performance. So you can experiment with these settings. I speculate that this provides less overhead when converting coordinates into steps but not sure.

Speed and DPI hints

There is a relationship between engraving speed and DPI and the associated PWM frequency. The higher the engraving speed, the higher you need to set the PWM frequency via the Mini Gerbil settings command ‘$28’ (Grbl uses the $ sign as a token for configuration settings). It is set to default 5 which translates to 1.5kHz.

Curious about those $ settings we talk about? Have a read here

10 thoughts on “LightBurn and Mini Gerbil Tips”

  1. I am having trouble setting up my machine. Home runs ok bur when I jog the Y axis it moves in the wrong direction. I believe this why I get an alarm if I try to run from the home position.
    How do I reverse the Y axis?

    1. Same problem here and if i switch the connector around the home function is also in reverse.
      I don’t know how to config $3=0 thats is chinese to me 🙁

      1. You can communicate with mini Gerbil via a G-code sender or LightBurn. There are a few simple configuration commands that allow you to set the settings. e have written a blog about that. https://awesome.tech/what-are-settings/
        Also feel free to browse the website (installation and calibration instructions) and K40 forum since there is a lot of information on this topic (“how to”).

      1. What if Lightburn doesn’t give you an option to change the baud rate? Currently my gerbil is recognized as GRBL-STM.

        1. In the LightBurn version below 0.9.0.0 you could set the baud rate. In later versions, this is set automatically to 230400 within the device driver (STM-Gerbil). I was disappointed that the developer has taken away this feature from the user but not much I can do about it since we only resell LightBurn…

  2. We’ve a K40 with a ribbon cable, so not a lot of connections to the mini-Gerbil. But when we set Lightburn to STM-Gerbil (for the mini-Gerbil), it doesn’t shut the laser off during travel moves.

    Is there a setting missing somewhere? Or is this an inherent hardware issue? If the latter? Any ideas where to go about looking to solve it?

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