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Messages - rcjarvis

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FAQs / Re: new computer
« on: March 17, 2011, 07:25:42 AM »
Welll, you know what, i did start using a really lon extensio cable, you speaking of ground stakes.... Maybe grounding is not so good since this thing is some 50 feet long. I started using it because I ran out of sockets, since my air compressor did not work properly ( I thought it was amperage drop due to length of extension), I decided to plug  the laptop in it instead... I'll look into that... Because all 3 computers worked fine when I set them up inside the house.... They startedd to go crazy when plugged in the shop, Last night ( cause it keeps me from a good night sleep) I tought it was my controller that was failed....


FAQs / Re: new computer
« on: March 16, 2011, 02:21:55 PM »
Guys, I'm so mistified... I've installed Mach3 in 3 diferent computers in the past few days and I always have the same problem in all 3 computers....lags

My original laptop wich has been running mach3 for almost 4 years without a glitch. It was running win p with 2go proc and 512 mb ram. I then installed on an old desktop that I had with lpt1 (parallel port), it's an amd xp2400+ with winxp, 1.6go proc 2 gig ram.

The other I tried is a win xp laptop , an hp nc6400 with twin 2 go proc an 3 gig ram... they allrun well till I start Mach3. Then it's sluggish to the point that the numbers in mach3 do not change fluidly, it goes for example from 12 to 14 t 19 to 25...then when I shut down Mach, the computer remains sluggish, windows take time to come up and down, . I even tried to turn on my first laptop and plainly run corel draw, runs fine. I got V-carve to calculate a complex v carving toolpath and it went fine. Then , started mach 3 and it did not even start. it seized with the mach3 logo in the screen... I know mach3 is a great software, it's earned me a good living 8 to 12 hours a day for the past 4 years. But I tried installing many versions. from the one I had ( 2.42) to the latest. Then i tried with 2.62 wich mentions on the welcome screen "cnccontroller for winxp and 2K ... no luck.

I updated all hardware drivers, video drivers even reformatted my old original laptop etc... no luck. Is there something I'm missing here... ???

This comes as I decided to hire an operator,He came in on his first day, and  As I turned on the computer, then started Mach3..... waited..... waited... looked so lame... I had cutte signs for many hours the day before without a single hint that things were to get so wrong....

I know this is as long as a testamanet but I'm tryinf hard to put things in a perspective... Dan

FAQs / Re: new computer
« on: March 12, 2011, 12:11:45 PM »
HI guysm your right, I got the news this Morning from Scott at licences.... I did take a look at the smooth stepper, I hope they have an enclosed external  version for laptops.

The usb to parrallel wire did make my plotter work, but it seems that it won't drive the cnc....

I'm waiting on the guys from warp9 tech, I'll post the results for further references on the forum...

Thanks for taking the time !!!:)


FAQs / Re: new computer
« on: March 11, 2011, 08:14:21 PM »
I remember I had to setup Windows XP to be turned off with the power button... I did everything said in this post, but my Mach won't talk to my cnc... I think I have to setup Win xp so it turns off with the power button for some algorithm reasons...

When I move my key pad, the numbers change on mach 3 but no movement... I had to  use a parallel to usb wire on this laptop.... is there a problem in using this, new computers do not have lpt1 (parallel ports) anymore...

I hope to have my cnc up and running by Monday so please help... I tried to look-up this problem in the search bar, probably don't use the right terms....


Please forgive my lazy a?? I just read a little further on your forum (tweakie) and found where to weld (lpt pin 15).   

Thx again

Hi Hilux and Tweakie, looks like I will not buy my way through this one, lot of reading and implementing "jargon" in the next month or so....

Hilux, I downloaded the .set file, "Big Tex" mentions that you need to have blue screen... what is that. And where do I put this .set file.

The video shows a  gray magic wire with alligator clip. Where is that wire leading to ? Some static switch or just a ground to the controller unit ?

As you can see from my questions, I'm really starting at ground level here... minus 1 or 2 :)

Tweakie, there's a lot of interesting infos on your website. That laser is something I might try... I'm also a r/c enthusiast and would like to cut fine precise parts for my choppers and planes..

But for now, I need to make my router more trustworthy, I mean that I would like to get more accomplished by not having to stand by it for those long 3D cuts, afraid to lose some steps and wrecking the bed...
I'll take more time to read thoroughly the links you guys left me and widen the learning spectrums of my brain !!!!


Hi everyone who cares. I tried to search archives on here but I'm really lost with all the abbreviations and "words of the trade" I read here.

Let's make it simple, I want to install a limit switch on the Z axis my 5' X 10' 3 axis cnc router + a touch plate also for Z axis. I run a 2 year old version of Mach3 and I can send pictures of my system to help you help me. If a system that I just add to my controller exists, I'll buy it. If I have to build it, I will... I'm not worried about installing the sensors or switches to my router ,  The help I need is with the software and electronics. What to use, and where to plug it... I've owned my router for 3 years and have learned to run it quite fast. I guess I can learn the more technical part also.

My router was built by CNC Maniac here in Quebec to my needs ( vertical 5 X 10  for space saving ) and works great. It's just that lately I've been working  in 3D with thick materials, loss of steps made the tools plunge right in through the bed a few times, since I'm investing in an aluminum bed, I do not want this to occur again. I'd prefer the work to stop instead of ripping through the actual reinforced  Plywood. Last time it went in all the way through + .5", 2 feet across, luckily without hitting any reinforcement steel tubes...

I'm a signcraft er in Quebec Canada ( http://www.woodandpassionsigns.com ) and have been in RC helis and planes so I'm used to the setting up of things, just do not have much time to browse around. Like I mentioned, I'm ready to pay for ready-built systems that I would only need to install and setup.

Daniel Gervais

General Mach Discussion / Re: 0 return not precise.
« on: June 26, 2008, 08:52:55 AM »
Sorry, I was scratching my head all day and was hiding under a pile of ripped hair !!!

Daniel G.

General Mach Discussion / Re: 0 return not precise.
« on: June 26, 2008, 08:27:19 AM »
This has  to be a Murphy's law type of thing. as I was running "detective" tests, the diiference was shorter and shorter. I loosened-up the  step-motors to see if everything was running smooth, I could run the whole distance with thumb and index...Throughout the testing( I was running 61"X 124"  X'S and squares The gap went from .285 to .024. I'm gonna close this thread for now, I feel like I spent a day between hell and the twilight zone (with many signs looking at me, waiting to be carved on time !!!) Hate when this happens in the rush season:(
 Brian Barker from Artsoft suggested switching on the sherline 1/2 step mode wich I will try today. What does that sherline thing do ???(Note: I'm really not familiar with all the bling blings in mach3, Usually just pop in the gcode and start))
Daniel G.

General Mach Discussion / 0 return not precise.
« on: June 25, 2008, 02:55:13 PM »
Hi, I've tried to find a solution to this problem on the forum but no luck so far.
This is the first time I work on a part that is 123 inches long. My tool will not come back to 0 origin when it travels all the way to the right of the 0 (Center of workpiece) . When it goes the whole 62.5 inches to the left, it comes back to 0. When it travels the same distance to the right, it comes back about 1/4 inch to the left of 0. does Mach3 have limitations on X and Y travel ?, I checked and cleaned all rollers and rails, usually, i don't detect any lost steps, lost steps are easily heard and felt.
The problem occurs both manually or g-code driven.

Daniel G.

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