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Topics - MachBruce

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General Mach Discussion / Windows & and smooth stepper missing steps
« on: September 14, 2011, 09:02:27 AM »
Having problems with missed steps??
I ran 3D file and it got half way thru the parallel finishing cut, when it decided to cut 8mm above the surface in mid air!
worked fine until then.
It is a new computer with Windows 7 installed running thru a Smooth Stepper from Mach3. I have know idea what is causing this problem.
Buffer overrun in smooth stepper? windows 7 running something in the background? I just dont know.
Im very frustrated as having spent days trying to fix this.
Any suggestion would be appreciated.

General Mach Discussion / Upgrade?
« on: April 07, 2011, 05:37:23 PM »
I have been running Mach Version R2.63 for quite a while now.
Is there any advantage to upgrade to the latest lockdown version R3.043.022?
I have always had problems getting the CV optimised.
Has there been any improvements in this area with the latest lockdown version?


General Mach Discussion / Upgrade , is CV better?
« on: July 05, 2010, 03:00:20 AM »
I am about to upgrade to the latest lock down version.

Has there been any improvements to the CV settings in the new version?


Hi all,
 I have just spent a very frustrating month chasing an intermittent Estop/limit problem. (after a machine rewire).  Mach3 would stop at anytime during executing a cut file. I have tried everything known to mankind  to try and fix the fault. Each time it occurred, the diagnostic screen did not indicate that a limit or estop had occurred. But the machine still stopped! Checked wiring, removed all plug in connectors in the limits and estops and soldered the connections, checked Power Supplies, checked shielding, checked vibration of switches, checked earthing, checked usb cable between Smooth Stepper and PC,
changed inputs to Port 2, checked dongle, checked all connections for power and earthing, changed to another PC, checked earthing of dust extraction, checked if i was still sane? whilst configing the new PC I noticed 2 little check boxes in the top right hand corner of the general config screen. "Input signal debounc/noise rejection"  I put  a 2 in each box and voila' the machine didn't stop!!!
I don't no where the noise is coming from but having to wait 80 microseconds for a limit or an estop seems like a fair compromise? 

Hope this might help someone keep some of their hair from turning grey.

Merry Christmas


General Mach Discussion / Parallel port woes
« on: March 28, 2009, 08:04:58 AM »
Something to share,

My Machine has been working beautifully for some time until recently when a couple of intermittent glitches have appeared. False limits, lost steps appeared from nowwhere. I have spent a whole day trying to track own the problem. I tracked it down to the parallel ports in my PC.  What was the cause? I reloaded Mach3 and did more check - the machine doesn't even move now.  More investigation revealed that the motion controller I purchased as a "plug and play" had a pull up voltage of 12v applied to the limit switch input of parallel port.  I have learnt a lesson from this. Check the stuff that we buy and make sure its OK and not just plug it in.

Moving along now - beckons this points.

What should have been in the controller to prevent this?  

I believe that any voltage over 5v applied applied to the parallel port can cause damage to the port and thus the mother board.

Should we always use a buffer board before the parallel port input?

Do the parallel port inputs require an extra pull up of 5v or can we rely on the pull up from the PC parallel port?

All I know is that I have  get another PC and I also need to modify the controller I am using.

Lesson learned.  I hope this will prevent some one else experiencing similar problems.


General Mach Discussion / Upgrading to latest version of Mach 3
« on: December 14, 2008, 01:47:36 AM »
Hi All,

How do I know what version of Mach3 I am running.
I would like to upgrade to the latest release.
Do I just install over the top of the my original version?
Are my settings saved or should I copy and reinstall my settings after install?


Seasons greetings everyone

Bruce (Happy Mach3 user)

General Mach Discussion / Work offset touch Button?????
« on: September 07, 2008, 11:09:06 PM »
I am trying to use Work Offsets as described in section 7.2.1 of the Mach 3 user manual.

Written as follows:  "Click the Touch button next to each of the axis in the current Work offset part of the screen".

No matter what I do nothing works as stated.

What the "Touch button"?

Any help please?


General Mach Discussion / Auto Tool zero. Which Input etc. do I Use?
« on: August 26, 2008, 06:17:44 AM »

The never ending saga of tool Tool zeroing!

I think I understand the macro posted elsewhere.

My questions are:
How and/or which pin do you wire the touch plate into the parallel port input.

How does the macro read the touch signal?

Is there somewhere I can find a how to it guide to setting up this common and popular feature in Mach3 mill. I know the videos explain (similar macros, but I cannot find a tutorial or guide on how to set up the hardware, screen buttons etc. to implement this common feature.
I am sure many starting out using Mach3 would welcome insight into how to easily do this. (There has been many posts on this and similar topics) I know it will encourage me to try other in house enhancement of my machine.

I appreciate any help on this post.



(very keen Mach3 cnc-er)

General Mach Discussion / To many Nodes?
« on: August 23, 2008, 01:09:32 AM »
Hi all,

I have a technical question regarding number of nodes vs resolution of machine.

When I  export a Dxf file from my cad program, process it with my Cam program and then run the file om my machine,
it produces very jerky movement when cutting curves and arcs. I can fix the problem by exporting using a lower resolution on the dxf export.

What is happening here?
Is it because the distance between nodes in th gcode is smaller than the resolution of my machine? Is it an acceleration /de-acceleration setting problem in Mach3?

It would be nice to understand what is going on for future reference.


General Mach Discussion / Reconfigure USB Jogging Dongle
« on: August 14, 2008, 12:48:36 AM »

Been away from the forum for a while . To busy building.

My question is : I have a controller with a "USB jogging dongle" supplied. I want to use one of the buttons on the dongle to produce a rapid jog. Can anyone give me an idea of where I should look in Mach3 or elsewhere in order to reconfigure the buttons for this use.



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