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Topics - mikep_95133

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Show"N"Tell ( Your Machines) / Adding a 4th axis to my mill
« on: March 13, 2012, 07:18:52 PM »
I have been awed as a student of Mr. Simpson's (Simpson36) 4th axis work. I've watched each of his videos at least once. Some several times. I am so inspired that I needed to try my hand at making my own 4th axis. I was previously considering making my lathe cnc, but the 4th axis added to my mill will fit the bill nicely. In fact I made a couple of items for a medical facility not long ago, and a 4th axis would have cut the machining time by 75% easily.

I've got one spin indexer in house that I need to tear down to see if it's true enough for this project. I'll have to order another one for the tail stock too. Since the servo motors can handle something  around 2400 in-oz, then I think a steep reduction will hold difficult work very still and allow 300-600rpm for turning down material. I'm hoping that this design will not require a brake.

Here is the first prototype cad rendering using Rhino 2.0.

I really wanted to have a 2000lb video game, so I read up on using Xbox controllers with Mach3. Watched some Youtube videos showing guys that had set it up. Wireless Xbox controllers are $50 around here. $42 on Amazon. But I found what looks to be a clone. It's actually a clone for PlayStation 3, but it looks close enough. The wireless PS3 clone controller that I  bought is from a company called I-Con. I got mine at Fry's for $25 + tax. It was even cheaper than Amazon. And wireless to boot!! It charges off of the usb port and has a lithium pack in it for good longevity.

To make it work there is a driver that this guy developed so that almost any game controller could be used on a pc with any game. It's called DS3 Tool. It's not your ordinary install and forget kind of driver. It has settings in it for many types of game controllers. It can also be used to reassign buttons and sticks to other functions. But this is usually done inside the Xbox plugin for Mach3. Not to mention it can make many types of controllers work with your game or in this case Mach3.

So I installed the plugin Xbox 360 into Mach3. Then I downloaded DS3 tool from http://www.motioninjoy.com/. Before installing, it's imperative to meet the minimum requirements for the driver. Those are found here: http://www.motioninjoy.com/wiki/en/help/requirements  When it asks that you have .Net Framework 3.5 installed, it means 3.5. Not 2.0 or 4.0. Very important to have 3.5. The others can also be installed, but 3.5 has to be there.

Once the driver minimums are met exactly, then unzip the file and install the driver. This guy helps pay for his work by using advertising showing on each page of the driver. It does state on the minimum requirements page that you can run the driver without an internet connection after a few start ups until DS3 Tool downloads the 'offline mode'. I need to look at that more as I've not messed with it as I always have internet. But the driver will show up as a blank page if you try to start it without an internet connection.

After meeting the minimum requirements and installing the driver, open the driver and hit the install all button. Next you have to check the box 'Xbox Controller emulator' box in DS3 Tool. Click on the options link. Hit the save button on the options page. Hitting that button activates the correct driver. I have to hit that button each time I boot up my pc. Not sure why.

Now you just follow the Xbox plugin install directions on the Machsupport.com site. Scroll down to the very bottom. http://www.machsupport.com/plugins.php

Then you go into Mach3. Config>config plugins>Check the enabled box. Double click on the yellow config box and match the xbox controls to your mill. Below is a pic I took of my Xbox settings inside of Mach3.

The easiest way to test the driver settings is to open the game controller icon in the control panel for windows. Start>Control panel>game controllers. It shows the controls being activated as you push the buttons and move the sticks. It should even say Xbox if the Xbox driver is properly activated. Then go and try it all in Mach3.

I've been using the DS3 Tool and the wireless I-con Xbox clone controller for a couple of weeks now. It's awesome to have my mill running off of a much cheaper wireless game controller. I think the driver will even let you use pc game controllers with are like $14. But I have not tried it yet.

This past week I 'upgraded' my pentium III 800mhz machine with a built in parallel port, to a core 2 duo 2.4ghz machine with a built in parallel port. The pentium could hit 135ipm with accel at 1 and have no pulses dropped. The new to me core 2 duo, and only hit 135ipm with accel at 1.5 and no dropped pulses.

Why did I not get a least a double in speed with the computer update.

All of this cutting air in a straight line.


The subject line says it all. I was testing for maximum ipm on my system. I raised the kernel speed one selection at a time while also bumping the ipm. Then I jumped to 100khz and now Mach3 locks up at the end of the screen loading, every time. Ii have to hit the reset button on my 800mhz pc to escape.

Is there a file in the Mach3 folder that I can go into and edit to bring the kernel setting down to say, 45khz?

A reinstall did not work as it keeps all of the old settings.


PS It's been a while since I've been around. Mach3 is now owned by NF? Is Art still around?

Works in progress / Wooddark1Jet_2.0.set
« on: January 23, 2007, 01:42:02 AM »
Here is my first shot at a screen design. I played with both SC4 and JC. Just thought I'd try JC first.

The wood back ground was made in PSP7. Then I took RealDraw, after watching Benny's video's, and added the insets. I went with a darker wood as I want the pertinent info to be the most noticeable like the DRO's etc, not the visual details surrounding each item like frames. The blue is really just a place holder. I want to make it a complimentary color to the wood background.

The Feed rate slider is there but invisible. Hopefully when someone lets me know how to fix I can get this first page done.

My pages will be simple since I was using CNCPro before.


JetCam screen designer / Adding a slider in JetCam?
« on: January 23, 2007, 01:32:50 AM »
Is it possible to add a visible slider in JetCam? I can put one in but it's always invisible no matter what I try. JetCam does not have the skinning ability that Screen4 has. I wonder if  that is why it has not worked.



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