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Topics - jimthefish

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General Mach Discussion / Moving off the stops
« on: January 22, 2013, 12:47:41 PM »
Can someone remind me how to set up Mach3 to let you jog off a stop when you have overtravelled?

General Mach Discussion / Changing computers
« on: January 13, 2013, 11:50:43 AM »
Ok I have asked this question before, but this time it with a different twist. My Dell 2400 computer has finally given up. So I've bought a second-hand Dell 2400 off Ebay (rather than go down the 64bit-32bit problem), same model but a better upgrade. To reinstall Mach and all my setting on the new computer do I re-download Mach3 off the web, use the loader to create a mill application, then inset my Licence and Xml file which I have backed up on a memory stick before the computer failure. Can someone give me a step by set guide to make sure I get the Xml and licence in the correct place, over to you Hood my man. Will my machine work with these new setup or do I have to do anymore alteration. Jim

General Mach Discussion / Windows 7 with 64bit
« on: November 29, 2012, 04:10:26 PM »
Hi got a questions. My Dell 580 desktop computer had a major hard drive failure last week, it seemed all the BIOS also got corrupted. I had a hell of a game to reload all my stuff after installing a new hard drive, couldn't even get it to load from the CD. Before the failure I was running Mach3 on it but not connected to my CNC machine, it worked fine. My question is can I still run Mach3 on my 64bit computer for program compiling without fear corrupting my hard drive or BIOS settings. I have no intention to run my CNC machine from this computer, this option allows me to construct the programs in the warmth of my living room on my 64bit. I then use a USB stick to transfer the program to an old 32bit computer in my workshop driving my CNC mill.
Basically I'm asking if Mach 3 software is safe to run on a 64bit computer as a program compiler and proving process providing its not connected to a CNC machine as I dont want to have the same problem.
Apologies if I'm stating the obvious only dont understand 64bit or 32bit options and dont want to repeat my computer failure again. 

General Mach Discussion / Plasma conversion
« on: September 21, 2012, 02:39:34 AM »
Hi everyone I'm looking for advice on adding a plasma torch to my benchtop CNC milling machine running on Mach 3. I cut six small copper shape I 0.7mm copper plate for a friend using a 3mm cutter, being copper it was a nightmare as cutters kept breaking. I finally did the job for him thinking that was that. Unfortunately I did a good job, he was well pleased and proceeded to ask for another 100. I pointed out the cost of tooling and the time it took me saying if you were paying industry prices it would be cheaper to cast them in gold, but said I would think about it. I'm a hobbyist and don't do contract work however I had a thought that retro fitting a cheap plasma cutter might be cost effective method of doing the job, indeed if i did the 100 pieces for him it would pay for the plasma cutter. Just for reference the component is 100mm x 75mm x 0.7mm with rads and internal corners that should be sharp, so I have to file out the 3mm rads caused by the cutter.
Here's the question(s).
Can you use a hand held torch, fitted to the z axis to cut components.
Will the plasma unit cause problems with the machines electronics
What other equipment will I need, I have a standard compressor.
The cut can start on or off the job, but looking on the forum cutter height and arc contact seem to be important how do I achieve this

I'm not looking for a pucker units, just one for this job, although I do make model steam trains and might find other uses for plasma cutting.

OK I can hear some of you saying where is this bloke coming from, but being a retired tight fisted mechanical engineer I ain't got a clue about plasma cutting, its all science fiction to me. I thought to cut material as long a the cutter was harder than the material to be cut I was OK.
Advice and suggestions welcome, Cheers fellow CNCers.

General Mach Discussion / Driver watchdog triggered
« on: September 18, 2012, 09:03:57 AM »
Hi, sometimes when I switch on Mach3 in the morning the first couple of attempts to cut a component the spindle and steppers switch off in mid cut. The error code "Driver watchdog triggered". I reboot Mach 3 each time and after a couple of false starts all appears to be OK, I then use the machine all day, most of the time cutting metal, with no problems. Searched all the forum but cant find a solution. The machine is in a wooden built workshop at the bottom of the garden and this error fault appear when the weather is cold, not frosty but in single digit temperatures. I can live with this but would like to no the possible cause and solution to the fault

General Mach Discussion / Swapping computer systems
« on: July 25, 2012, 02:05:53 AM »
Some advice please, Yesterday my old Dell computer monitor decided to shut down mid way a cutting program, the job completed but all I had on the screen was cannot display resolutions with a suggested alternative resolution. Swapped the monitor restarted the computer with the same screen fault, so suspect graphics card fault (window 7 operating system). It was 35 degrees in my workshop so waited till last night when it was cooler and went down and the screen was working. My question is can I put the Mach3 folder complete on a pen drive and transfer it to another computer or do I have to load Mach3 then add the xml and licence afterwards? I have my licence and Xml files on a separate pen drive already on a pen drive in case of a complete computer failure.
I'm being extra careful as my little Triac milling machine has been working perfect for 3 year and I'm half way completing a project so want to make sure I transfer it to another computer first time  and not spend days getting it up and working again.
Any suggestions and the best way to move Mach3, (would I benefit from any mods to Mach3 hence loading the latest version)  would be welcomed except for cancelling the hot weather, we in the UK have been waiting months to see the sun.

General Mach Discussion / Spindle speed problem
« on: April 10, 2012, 02:16:18 AM »
Hi, got a problem with my spindle drive speed. Bought myself one of those digital rev counter to check my spindle speed as it seems to slow down depending on the length of time I use the mill.

For example when I dial in M3 S1000 or use a pre-programmed set of codes when I first use the mill in the morning it gives me 1400 rpm, after 10mins of machining the machine settles at 1000rpm. After an hour of use the spindle speed settles at 800rpm although I'm still calling for 1000rpm. I'm using a Denford Triac bench top mill with a very old LYNX spindle drive board. It uses 4 wires from my BOB with a spindle drive card attached to it to send a voltage to control the spindle speed. I realise it must be the voltage the LYNX board is receiving but cant find any visual problems. I know a very small change in the voltage signal will effect the spindle speed so have shielded these 4 wires from external interference but still get differing speeds. Has anyone got any suggestions as to how to solve this problem apart from replacing my LYNX unit. Just to compound the problem this variation in spindle speed does not happen all the time but the more often than not.

General Mach Discussion / Laser cutting
« on: February 07, 2012, 02:21:41 PM »
Hi Hood, hope you read this first. I need some laser cutting done for a Child Bereavement charity its in the shape of a 6" leaf which I then engrave with the deceased child name on it, its then hung on a tree in a garden of rememberance. Can I ask on Mach Forum if someone can laser cut the outer form for me for payment, I need about 12 a month. If this is against the rules please take the topic off.

General Mach Discussion / Connecting a printer
« on: December 16, 2011, 06:14:38 AM »
Hi I'm using a 10 year old Dell computer to run my Mach3 software through a standard printer port (25pin). Before I connect a printer into the system via a usb port can someone advise that this will not effect my connection between the computer and my CNC Mill. E.G Mach will not get confused when I try to print out a copy of any programs. Don't want to upset my set up which is running perfectly.

Tangent Corner / Getting the right gear cutter
« on: November 15, 2011, 01:03:30 PM »
Hi I need to buy a gear cutter for cutting a 1.125 diameter gear with a contact DP of 1" and 18 teeth. what cutter do I need is it a 18-20DP but what number cutter do I need? I purchase a cutter thinking it was the correct one only to find the cutter cut teeth to wide. Help please

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