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Topics - 3Dsigns

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General Mach Discussion / Need help finding Mach3 settings
« on: April 03, 2017, 08:27:39 PM »
My computer died, I think it was the video card maybe. So I took the hard drive out and stuck in another old machine. Now I don't know how to find the file with the Mach3 settings for my machine. Someone said something about an "xml" file or something? thanks

General Mach Discussion / Vibrating Motors
« on: August 24, 2015, 03:36:39 PM »
My hotwire foam cutter is close to being operational. But the motors on the x axis are vibrating/rattling. I found something once which explained "resonance" but I don't see anything in the motor tuning feature iof Mach3. maybe I'm looking in the wrong place. Thanks.
Here's the machine....

This little machine is supposed to be for "Milling". Would it be possible to use this for making things like gantry ends and other relatively small parts out of aluminum or aluminum alloy?

General Mach Discussion / Newbie Trying to test my first controller
« on: September 27, 2013, 09:21:27 AM »
Greetings all,
I am a newbie building my first CNC project which is to be a 10'x9'x5' hotwire foam cutter, I have all my electronics situated in an enclosure and my steppers connected for testing. In trying to text my computer's parallel port, I opened MACH3, set the screen to Program/run mode, selected "config">ports and pins>

Port Setup is "port #1 enabled
Port Address is 0x378
Motor Output > x,y, and z axes are set to 2,, 3, and 4 respectively
Input signals > "e stop" is enabled and set to pin number "0"

I clicked apply, OK
Went back to the program run screen
clicked "reset" so that it was not blinking
stuck a paper clip in the second hole at the bottom, on the "wide side" of the computer's parallel port.

but....I'm reading 4.44v no matter which arrow key I press
What am I doing wrong?
Here are a couple of shots of my controller...
The box was an outdoor solar-power enclosure.

General Mach Discussion / Newbie Questions
« on: October 30, 2012, 04:58:47 PM »
I am planning to order 3- bipolar 8-wire nema23 425 oz/in steppers (2.8 A) for my y axis  and 2- bipolar. 8 wire 640 oz. (6.3A) for the x.
I already ordered 5- Gecko model #213v drivers. I sure could use some help determining the right size size power supply for these. Also, if I buy Mach3 software. will I still need a breakout board? since descriptions say Mach3 "converts a computer to a 6 axis cnc controller". what does that mean? does that mean Mach3 replaces some of the hardware?
Thanks for your help

This is the 10' x 8 ' hotwire cutter I'm building. Each tower will weigh about 26 lbs in single wire mode and about 35 lbs in multi-wire/gantry mode.


Show"N"Tell ( Your Machines) / Ancient Grinding macine
« on: October 09, 2012, 11:48:08 AM »
This is the machine I'm setting up to (hopefully) grind the v-edges of my linear rails. It's an automatic planer-blade grinder. The carriage, at top front, slides on a well greased v-rail on the top end and a flat one at the bottom on the back side of the carriage directly below the rack. It has rack and pinion drive. When the carriage gets to the end of it's travel, in either direction, it trips a lever, which pushes the drive belt (connected to the back of the twin shaft motor), switching the belt to the next pulley which reverses the travel and repeats the process. Each time the carriage passes a v-shaped deflector thingy, it trips a spring loaded lever which slightly turns the 1/2" shaft in the front. When that happens each end of the shaft has a worm gear which turns another gear ever so slightly with each pass, pushing the top of the carriage (in the "y axis") a tiny fraction closer to the grind wheel. The platen can be set for any angle and the carriage has stops, to prevent any further movement when the job is complete. By just swinging the carriage either way and setting it at an angle to the grind wheel, it will cut hollow ground blades.

The carriage was rocking when I first tried it, but after discovering a bracket, under the back rail, which someone had installed backwards, I found that the machine is now very tight.  I have to build some stabilizers for the ends of the carriage,which were missing with this unit so I don't know, yet how uniform it will grind my 10' rails. But I picked it up at a garage sale for only 50 bucks and if it doesn't work to my satisfaction, I'll go a different route

Show"N"Tell ( Your Machines) / Vacuum Hold Down
« on: October 09, 2012, 11:09:17 AM »
This is the vacuum hold down system I put together for my old Shopbot PRT96. It has a bypass valve in the center, a 3 phase motor with static phase convertor, magnetic starter, intake filter, rubber anti-vibration coupling, and a fluid-filled vacuum meter. The shortest pipes, connect to the front zones which are used the most. My platen/grid thingy(not shown), on the table top is made from 3/4" expanded PVC which is one of the substrate materials we use in the sign biz.

General Mach Discussion / Mach3, motors and drivers
« on: October 08, 2012, 05:30:23 PM »
I'm a newbie to CNC and sure could use some help.
I want to build a fairly large 10'x7'x5'h hotwire foam cutter for cutting out monument signs and 3D letters and I've looked at alot of stepper motors and drivers on Ebay. I want 5 axis in my system. Two in the x two in the y and a fifth for a lathe/turntable. The machine will not need alot of torque because the wire isn't supposed tp encounter any resistance and the y/gantry is relatively light.  Would 263 in/oz steppers be enough? or 425 in/oz? They also have some which are 800 in/oz/ The machine will be running slow so will I need reducer gears or can the steppers handle the low speeds?

Mach3 is supposed to act as the 'controller' right? So If I use Mach3, what components will I not need? a breakout board? drivers? Is nema 23 big enough or are the shafts strong enough to operate a tight enough timing belt between pulleys 10' apart? I'm not totally lost but just about. :)

Oh yes, my frame will be made of 1.5x3 80/20 aluminum t-slot. and I plan to use v-groove wheels, home made v-rails and timing belts for all linear motion.

Thanks for the help!

Here's some of the stuff I found....




General Mach Discussion / "controller"
« on: September 30, 2012, 03:06:19 PM »
I am preparing ro build my first cnc machine. it will be a hotwire foam cutter.
If I use Mach3, will I need control boards? or just stepper motors?

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