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Messages - JimG

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Just a quick follow-up - like a dog with a bone I wanted to find out the OEM code of the Gauge Height DRO on my screen.   I couldn't get on with MachScreen,  and Screen4 on my modern Win10 PCs crashed and stalled continually needing a lot of CTRL-ALT-DEL to restore order.   But the PC I use for Mach with my KX1 is a slightly elderly one running WinXP. 

So I loaded up Screen4 on it and it worked well.  I was able to right-click on the DRO in question on the screen and found that the OEM value was 1002.   I replaced the value for the 1151 value in the three VBScripts that were looking for the value in the DRO and they all worked. :)

However I will stick with the Tweakie script. :)


Installed the script this morning and did a few adjustments to suit my setup and it works well. :)   I've been meaning to do this for years since I first got the KX1 in 2010 and I wonder why I never did anything about it until now.  :)  I can get rid of the cigarette papers.  :)

I'm no expert on VBScript but I find it interesting to compare the (now) four scripts I have to do the same function which all vary to quite an extent.


Hi Jim,

Everyone has their own preference for the Auto Tool Zero script. If its any help to you this is the one that I am using. You would have to make changes to some of the values to suit your set-up but the comments should help.


PlateThickness = 2.8 'Touch Plate thickness is set here

I note that your code does what I was contemplating,  i.e. hard coding the plate thickness into the code rather than reading the value from a DRO.   I will have a go at that today and run your code as well.  Many thanks.


General Mach Discussion / Getting Auto Tool Zero Operation to Work in Mach3
« on: September 05, 2023, 01:19:48 PM »
I've had a difficult day trying to get this operation to work in my Mach3 setup.   I have three scripts which I have tried and all work except for not adding the gauge offset when the probe touches.  The three scripts all date from around 2010 and all of them access the Gauge Block DRO with the code "GetUserDRO(1151)".  When I single step through the scripts,  the value from this operation is zero.

The screen I'm using is one supplied by support for Seig KX1/3 machines in the UK and I suspect that the work wasn't quite completes from a remark left in the script area of the Auto Touch button. :-)   I wondered if an OEM code wasn't attached to the DRO,  or whether a different one had been attached.   I've spent the afternoon trying to see if I could get some information using MachScreen to investigate the screen,  but absolutely nowhere.  It's not often that a bit of software beats me. :-)

I also picked up that OEM codes may have changed over the years and a more recent list of DRO OEM codes I accessed did not have a code 1151 in it.

Any suggestion on how I can find out what's going on.     

I also tried Screen4 to investigate the screen but that software just hung up,  even in compatability mode.

I'm running Version R3.043.062


General Mach Discussion / Re: Spindle Control
« on: August 05, 2022, 10:46:46 AM »
I.e. everything works, the machine runs, executes the program, but the spindle does not rotate?

That's pretty much it.     I've been using the machine over the past two days and in about 50% of the machine starts,  the spindle motor did not start.  I'm using small diameter carbide slotting cutters (1mm, 2mm) so after starting the cut I immediately hover over the stop button so that I can stop the machine before the stationary cutter ploughs into the material.   If this happens,  starting the spindle in a counter clockwise direction,  then running the program seems to work - i.e. as soon as the program is started,  the counter-clockwise turning spindle stops,  then restarts in the clockwise direction and the cut proceeds as normal.

I can sort of live with it,  but it would be nice if I didn't have to hover over the stop button at every start. :-)


General Mach Discussion / Spindle Control
« on: August 01, 2022, 04:45:20 PM »
I've started getting a problem with my Seig KX1 spindle control.    The Mach3 setup was upgraded from the original parallel port interface to an ESS system a couple of years ago and has been working well until recently.

The main problem is that when I start running a GCode file in Mach 3,  most of the time the spindle doesn't start.    The required spindle speed is shown on Spindle Speed and SRO,  but there is no movement from the spindle.   I can't start the clockwise spindle manually using the button on the screen or F5,  but I can start in the counter-clockwise direction using the screen button or F6.   I've now found that if I start the spindle using F6,  then run the GCode file,  that the spindle will stop,  then start running in the clockwise direction at the required speed and the cut proceeds as normal.

I'm afraid that the manual I got with the KX1 is not much help so I'm not sure where to start looking to try and sort the problem out.


Sieg Machines / Re: Original KX1 Upgrade to USB or Ethernet
« on: January 25, 2021, 11:37:29 AM »
Probably the Warp9 ESS would be the way to go but I am suprised that the 57CNC does not support step and direction for spindle control. Have you contacted Polabs to ask if there is any possibility of this function being supported ?

Yes I did and they said that the PoKeys57CNC and the Pokeys57CNCdb25 could not control the KX1 spindle using Mach3 and had limited control using Mach 4.   I opted not to upgrade to Mach4 in case the limited control was not satisfactory.   I've been looking at the ESS and the UC100.   The Warp9 products appear to have a comprehensive coverage of dealing with the spindle in Mach3 on their web site so I might take a punt on the ESS.

I'm also having to learn a lot about under the hood on the KX1. :-)  The way the KX1 was marketed in the UK was that users didn't need to know more than how to operate Mach3.  The late John Stevenson set it up that way and it did work most of the time. :-)   If he was still around he would have had the answer. :-)


Sieg Machines / Original KX1 Upgrade to USB or Ethernet
« on: January 25, 2021, 06:51:05 AM »
Can anyone recommend a way to upgrade my original KX1 with Mach3 and parallel port interface to use a USB or Ethernet controller?   I have already purchased a Pokeys57CNCdb25 and found that it could not control the spindle which requires a step and direction pair to do the job.   I've had a look around one or two other controllers but have seen one or two messages in forums which have raised further questions.


General Mach Discussion / Re: KX1 spindle direction problem
« on: March 08, 2019, 01:05:43 PM »
I've just had a dig around on the  old support forum for the KX1/3 and in one of the threads there is mention of a direction pin for the spindle motor.  Unfortunately the FAQ section of the web site is not available and that did hold the actual pinout diagrams.  So if your KX1 uses the parallel port interface,  I would check your pin outputs to see if the the direction pin is working.  It could be oxidisation of the contact in the socket and it might be worth while putting some switch cleaner on the plug and socket contacts and doing a bit of vigorous plugging and unplugging to try clean them.   If I get a chance I'll see if I can put a port monitor on my KX1 and see which pin changes with spindle reversal.


General Mach Discussion / Re: KX1 spindle direction problem
« on: March 07, 2019, 07:38:33 AM »
I wan to ask about my cnc mach3 KX1 have a problem about a spindle direction, my spindle direction only CCW, change the code to m3 still same direction. Is it because my kx1 profile have a problem?

Just a thought, but if the spindle direction is controlled in a similar way to the axes stepper motors then there will be a direction pin feed to control the dircetion.  I haven't had a chance to check out my KX1 to see if this is so but I do remember having a fault on a stepper motor only going one way and the problem turned out to be a poor direction pin connection on the control cable plug.   If I get a chance I'll dig around and see if the spindle motor is controlled gthat way.


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