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Messages - pilotjunky

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General Mach Discussion / Re: edge finding/2.5D probing
« on: August 22, 2008, 12:21:42 AM »
I've been looking at your Probing Utility and using it with the SmoothStepper.  It appears to work very very well.  Thank you for your efforts with this.

Just wanted to say thanks, and if I don't manage to crunch my probe first, I'll post some results. :-)  I am using the TP-100.

Once you get the hang of it, this method of probing "within the lines" makes much more sense than the traditional square probing.  I've been desperately seeking a faster method of probing and this may just do the trick.

You are correct how important the Accel settings are, they cannot be underestimated (in the context of Decel anyway).

Would you consider posting it on www.cnc4free.org? I have no affiliation with the site, but it may get more "air time" there.... just a thought.

Rich.

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I have been using an Old Dell Latitude Laptop for a couple years... not much punch, but likely the last vintage with a parallel port.  It has USB 1.2.    I also ran it tonight using my new Dell Inspiron 1420 with 4 Gig of RAM ... Duo Core... USB 2.0....  both of them felt the same...  it is "just" USB after all :-)

Over the coming days I'll run a 3D job and post further.

Rich

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SmoothStepper USB / HobbyCNC and SmoothStepper - Happy Customer
« on: July 21, 2008, 11:55:16 PM »
Paid for my SmoothStepper on the July 17th, it arrived today July 21st.  As advertised, less than a weeks wait.

I have retrofitted my HobbyCNC board with the SmoothStepper, and it's now a working USB device.  I have some more testing to do, but initial high speed jogs and TP-100 Touch probe testing have proved quite "Smooth".  See the attached Photo.  Mounting location has good airflow and does not change the flow to the HobbyCNC chips.  From opening the package to complete physical implementation was about an hour.

Driver installation was very clean... as was the plugin.  I did not have to touch any of my existing Mach3 settings, it just worked.

The only "Minor" head scratcher was looking in Mach for the "Reset Device Sel..." under the Function Cfg's menu which allowed me to choose the SmoothStepper Plugin.  I may have missed it in the manual...

I'm sure there is more to learn, ie. Why I would want an external 5v power supply...  and how to get maximum performance from the device... but a great first impression.

Thanks!
Rich.


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General Mach Discussion / 3D Probe Settings questions
« on: July 11, 2008, 11:23:31 PM »
Hi...

Just got my TP-100 Probe in today... seems to work great, but I have a few questions.

1.  Max Grid Increment setting...  what is the definition of this setting.  For example, if I set it to .01 if give me a point ever .01 of an inch.  But my question is, if it is set to say 1 inch for example, I assume it will put a point every inch regardless of a point being hit?  Or if hits a point between 0 and 1 inch it will record that point?   What is the recommended approach with this setting?  Does it depend on Object size?  I asking before experimenting so I don't destroy the probe in the process...

2. Probe Ball Diameter... mine is .076... what is this parameter doing?  I assume this compensates?

3. Probe Rate must rely on something else... probing seems slow any way you shake it... any suggestions or recommended settings?

4. Maximum Z height for stuck probe... what is this for, and more importantly, what is the definition of a stuck probe?

I have scanned, and the point cloud shows up in MachCloud, but I have had no luck in meshing the cloud to output to a .STL.   I can Mesh the "Prop" example, so I know I'm doing it right... but there must be some minimum point cloud settings I'm missing.

Thanks for any Advice.

Rich.

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Hi...

I have updated the document to reflect a discussion of the previous post regard the .STL plugin and Sketchup.  It includes the web link and some screen shots for clarity. 

Just redownload for the latest release.

Rich.

6
Ah yes....

Go here http://www.ohyeahcad.com/download/ and about a third the way down you will see the .STL plugin for Sketchup...  Once you have the plugin set up, you must remember to "Explode" any 3D drawings you download such that the .STL export works properly.

I suppose I should eventually add that goodie to the article too. :-)

Let us know how it works out for you.

Rich.

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Thanks Brett... hope it helps.. if any sections are worth elaborating, let me know.

Rich.

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Admittedly I have not tried vacuum forming on the plaster just yet.  But, my thinking in doing so would be to use Dow Corning RTV 3110 mold making material over the initial CNC'ed mold.  RTV 3110 separates real easy and makes a perfect mold without bubbles.  Then use this RTV 3110 "negative" to poor plaster of Paris into that for subsequent molds.  The RTV 3110 negative would become the template. I could even set aside the Original CNC'ed mold at that point for safe keeping.   So, if I couldn't find a good parting agent for Plaster of Paris and the plastic, I could simply use the RTV 3110 mold to pour in a material that would be more favorable, liquid plastic perhaps.  Vacuum forming is on my "list of things to get to..." :-)

Rich.

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Hi all.

Attached is an article I have written (and continue to tweak) , which discusses CNC right from building a small HobbyCNC Machine through using Mach3 and beyond.

Although originally intentioned as a forum thread, it sort of "grew out of control" and became the attached article.  It focuses on R/C airplane building, but covers topics applicable to many applications.

I'm sure anyone new to CNC as a Hobby will find something in this article useful.  It answers, or at least talks about many of the questions I have seen on the Mach support forums and beyond.

E-mail me with feedback if you'd like.

P.S.... I had sent to to Art for approval before posting  :)

Rich.

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