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Topics - Filou

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General Mach Discussion / UC300-5LPT port problem
« on: October 04, 2021, 05:25:28 AM »
On a functional 4 axis rig, the UC300-USB was removed and replaced by a UC300-ETH, on a UC300-5LPT board.
UC300 plugin version v1.020, Mach 3 version X.066, running on Win 7, 64 bits.
One C11G BoB from Arturo (CNC4PC) connected on physical port 2 of UC300-5LPT. All pins assigned to "port 2" in Mach3 menu Config / PortPins: works flawlessly.

Connected second C11G on physical port 3 of UC300-5LPT, and assigned pins to "port 3" accordingly in Mach 3  No success.

One Wizard (thank you again Gerry) in this forum and the manufacturer of the UC300 board could not help.

The second C11G card is brand new, and wired in a similar way as the first one.

Sending a signal that makes its way through "port 2" in Mach 3 to "port 3" and connecting the original working C11G card to the appropriate physical port 3 on the LPT5 board fails. This seems to indicate that port 3 on the LPT cannot be addressed.

The alternative test, taking one pin along the "port 2" route and assigning it to "port 3" in Mach 3, makes this pin unavailable. Thus Mach 3 makes a difference between "port 2" and "port 3", regardless of the actual route beyond.   

How can one port only on the LPT5 be defective ?   (cable tested to be OK)

Has anyone another idea ?

Enjoy your week, Philippe

PS: the monitoring window of the UC300 plugin reflects the exact observations made trough the whole controls chain. 


General Mach Discussion / Mach 3 - driving beyond soft limits ?
« on: April 07, 2018, 03:25:35 AM »
Dear Forum Readers,

Has anyone else experienced something similar ???

I have been using Mach 3 for about a year for prototyping work on a 1 meter x 1.5 meter 3 axis router system, without major problems.

Two recent events are suspicious and potentially dangerous; Mach 3 passed one of its soft limits during machining and the axis motion was stopped by the hardware limit switch in place. These two scary events were started in a regular manner, no warning of Mach 3 telling me that the job goes beyond a soft limit, for example.   

On the second such event I could verify that the machine coordinate system of two axis had shifted by some amount, 170 mm for one axis, some 23 mm for the second.

I extracted these two numbers by jogging the "crashed" axis off of the limit and gently jogging to each of the home switches until they trip. The values indicated by the DROs in this situation should be identical than the values after a homing procedure, zero in my case.  A clear shift in machine coordinate was present. Scary and disappointing.

The configuration of this basic 3 axis open loop system:
X, stepper, no encoder, home switch on its own pin, limits in series on pin 15
A is slave of Y, steppers, no encoders,  Y home switch on its own pin, Y limits in series on pin 15
Z, stepper, no encoder, home switch on its own pin, Z limits in series on pin 15
in short: 3 pins for homing, one for limits, and one for e-stop.
The working volume defined by the soft limits is smaller and lies inside the volume defined by the hardware limits.

Any comment you may provide will be appreciated.

enjoy your WE, Philippe

In the process of up-grading an old measurement system which has 3 axis and relies on out-of-date controls SW.

Is there a way to have Mach3 or Mach4 WRITE the numbers corresponding to every target position reached and assessed by encoders to a file ?
Browsed a little in the SDK forum without success (or not enough patience).

any hint is welcome. regards, Philippe

General Mach Discussion / Strange observation with HOME switches - Mach3
« on: February 06, 2018, 02:49:18 PM »
I observe something strange with the following HOME switches settings:

in Mach 3, USB attached to a motion controller connected via LPT to a BoB:

pin 10 associated to Home X
pin 11 associated to Home Y
pin 12 associated to Home Z

There are three identical inductive sensors, wired to provide a CLOSED CIRCUIT when NOT actuated. Thus, when a individual sensor trips, the V difference sensed by each pin increases to some 4.2 V, a value well within the TTL range.

In operation, Mach 3 homes every axis individually (as well as ref them all) without fault. Can work.

However, on the Diagnostic Panel provided by Mach 3 there is something strange: if I actuate only of the three Homes, the states of all three input channels monitored by Mach 3 flip (i.e. turn yeloow on the GUI). This is only true when all three switches are connected and operational. If I perform this test with ONE sensor connected at the time, the diagnostic panel displays the expect and single state change only.

Even if this situation does not preclude safe homing operation, I feel it as sufficiently strange to seek for an explanation.   

The voltage change measured at each channel upon sensor actuation is coherent with expectation and TTL value range. 

Has anyone observed similar "strange" behavior ?
Thank you for any comment you may provide.

Regards, Philippe

General Mach Discussion / UC300 (USB) to Mach3 erratic connection losses
« on: February 17, 2017, 05:45:38 PM »
I observe erratic  >:( connection losses between a UC300 and a Win 7  laptop box running Mach 3. No power RF sources (like plasma or torch) around, simply 3 axis actuated by NEMA 24 steppers.
Motor cables shielded with braid and separated from limit / home cabling which run in their own shielded braid. Single point grounding to avoid ground loops.
Connection losses do not seem to be influenced by machine activity, or the lack thereof.
I could be in IDLE state for an hour, or work for 30 minutes without any connection loss or be idle for 2 minutes and experience 5 connection losses in a row.
I do not seem to be able to find any pattern.  Hard to say if it is Mach 3 / the Win 7 box / or the UC300 motion driver. Tested several USB cables and double checked for ground loops.
Tried to up-date the driver of the UC300 - failed. Power management of laptop: never sleeps.

Anyone facing similar issue ?

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