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Messages - SimonD

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General Mach Discussion / Re: Odd Startup Behavior
« on: December 12, 2007, 03:31:59 PM »
I am using pins 2-9 for Step/Dir on the 4 drives.
Pin 1 is for the charge pump (not yet implemented but planned)
Pin 14 is for drive enabling.

Leaving only 16 and 17, Ideally 1 for Spindle and 1 for coolant.

As I am having trouble with pin 16, I have both relays connected to pin 17 so the coolant comes on whenever the spindle comes on. It is not ideal but it seems to be working OK.

It would appear that the fault does not lie with pin 16 - which, I assume, switched the spindle on and off correctly, but lies with the "dir" pin for the axis in question.

Can you elaborate on that? Why would the dir pin affect it? If I stop using pin 16 altogether then the problem goes away (or at least has not shown itself since disconnecting that pin)

You say that you press F5 - so I assume this must be set up on your system hotkeys. Check on your system hotkeys set-up and make sure Pin ?? is not inadvertantly set up to also react to F5. (Or indeed on someother program that may be running in the background - although to be fair pins 2 - 9 were only data pins if used with a printer)
F5 is the standard key for spindle on. I have not modified the system hotkeys from the standard install.

Does the fault occur if you use the mouse on the screen ???
Yes, if I press the screen button then the fault occurs. (while pin 16 is connected)

I did do a complete strip down and rebuild when I added the 4th axis including completely rebuilding the electronics enclosure/wiring etc. The original system was using the onboard LPT port and I had the same problem. I have installed a separate LPT card now and the problem is still there. I can only assume it is some sort of interference problem on the StepMaster board or within the driver system of the PC.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing. Whilst the StepMaster is a great little card, I appear to have outgrown it quite quickly! When I first started I didn't want the 4th axis, coolant/spindle control or a charge pump!

General Mach Discussion / Re: Falling at the first hurdle!
« on: December 11, 2007, 04:34:21 PM »
On the advise of MotionControlProducts, I have just rewired my Z axis (FL60 motor) using parallel instead of series and I can now move the axis ~3 times fister than when it was wired in series before it stalls.

Apparently the FL60 do not do well on 24v as the torque drops off very quickly with speed.

So while you are in the early stages I would try to wire the FL57's in parallel and see how they perform. I have not tried rewiring my FL57's yet.
I would be interested in hearing if it improves the FL57's too.


General Mach Discussion / Re: Drive Enabling
« on: December 11, 2007, 04:30:07 PM »
Hood, Many thanks for the help.

I started to systematically remove the enable wiring, check and re-attach. And unlike normal, where sods-law says it is the last one you try which is the problem, I found it on the first wire I removed!

General Mach Discussion / Re: Drive Enabling
« on: December 10, 2007, 05:08:29 PM »
Thanks, I thought that was what it was doing before I added the 4th axis but couldn't be sure my memory wasn't playing tricks with me!

This is my first "Major" project.
A self designed Complete Rotor Head for a mini indoor helicopter (Walkera Dragonfly DF4)
All machined from bar and plate aluminium.
To give you an idea of scale... All the bolts are M2

General Mach Discussion / Drive Enabling
« on: December 10, 2007, 04:42:43 PM »

I am currently using pin14 to enable all 4 drives.
When I press E-STOP the drives bvecome disabled as expected.
The trouble is this also happens when a program finished using either the M2 or M30 command or when I press the STOP button (not E-STOP)
This means that if I need to jog the table then I have to press the E-STOP twice to get the drives re-enabled before I can jog.

Is this the designed behaviour of MACH3? or do I have a wiring problem somewhere?

Am I overcomplicating things by having MACH3 control the drive enabling? Should I just have the drives "allways on" ??


General Mach Discussion / Re: Falling at the first hurdle!
« on: December 10, 2007, 04:20:50 PM »
Ah, you've got the boxed version...
I have the plain PCB versions and there are 2 potentiometers on the baord for each axis, one to set the PFD and one to set the VRef for each axis. 

Having looked at the maual for yours online, it states...
 Two phase bipolar (chopper) pulse width modulating technology
 1/8 micro stepping output
 Suitable for 4, 6, or 8 wire motors
 Permanent stepper motor current output 2.0 amps / phase or greater
(SOP-2, SOP-2B)
 Permanent stepper motor current output 1.2 amps / phase or greater
 4 independent axis’ of control
 Motor connection via 4 position mini - din receptacle (SOP - 2, SOP -
 Motor connection via external terminal blocks (SOP-2B)
 Maximum 30VDC @ 2.5 amps/phase motor output

From that it looks like you don't have to do anything!

General Mach Discussion / Re: Odd Startup Behavior
« on: December 10, 2007, 03:51:02 PM »
I will try M30. The only real reason I went for the StepMaster cards was they were cheap off eBay!

I have found a routine to make the fault reproducable...

If I press the following...

-> the table moves left (correct)
<- the table moves right (correct)
F5 (start the spindle)
-> the table moves right (wrong)
<- the table moves right (correct)
-> the table moves left (correct)

It seems there is still a problem with pin 16 on my PC. (I have had problems in the past but thought they were fixed with a new LPT card)

If I change the relay output to pin 17 then the problem does not appear to happen, as soon as I move it back again it can be tested as above.
I was using pin 17 for my coolant relay but thought that was causing the problem so removed it again and went for plugging/unplugging it as required.

I guess I could try pin 14 but I was using that to get MACH3 to enable the drives. I removed that too because I was having problems with the axis becoming disabled after I pressed stop (not E-STOP) and I could not jog the axis without pressing the E-STOP twice!

Alternatively I could wire both the relays into pin 17 so the coolant started whenever the spindle was on?

General Mach Discussion / Re: Falling at the first hurdle!
« on: December 10, 2007, 10:36:30 AM »

I have the same motors and am using the 3 axis SOP and a single axis SOP from StepMasterNC. I am also using a 24V power supply (150W)

The motor datasheet can be downloaded from the MotionControlProducts.com website.

I have mine wired in series...
Connect Blue - Red/White
Connect Green - Black/White
A = Blue/White
A# = Red
B = Green/White
B# = Black

Note the order on the SOP board is different.

You need to set the VREF on each axis to 1.25x required current. e.g. 1.25x2A = 2.5V

I look forward to hearing your results as I am still struggling with mine... The Z axis motor is underpowered and I have just replaced it with am FL60STH86 which was supposed to be nearly double the torque but I am now having problems with the speed of it! I can't get it to run anywhere near the same speed without stalling.

General Mach Discussion / Re: Odd Startup Behavior
« on: December 08, 2007, 10:53:23 AM »
I am using a 3 axis StepMasterNC and a 1 Axis StepMasterNC for the A axis.
It has been working fine for ages.

I have just run a program and it cut flawlessly for 2 1/2 hours. After the program had finished I manually positioned using the MDI screen so that I could drill holes etc. I then loaded a new piece of material, pressed rewind and started the new program and all of a sudden the X axis is going the wrong way again!.

I re-homed all axis and typed in the start coordinates and it went to it OK. I then pressed rewind and start again and it worked!

It is almost as though when the program has finished something is messing up the X axis.
I terminate the program with an M2 command followed by a % symbol on a line by itself. What does this do?


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