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Messages - Highspeed1964

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General Mach Discussion / Re: Machine had a another brain fart.
« on: September 28, 2016, 05:01:20 AM »
Could be a motor going out. Or it could be noise interference. Also, what version of Mach3 are you running? I believe the last posted version (albeit some time ago since development on 3 has stopped) has some known issues and it is recommended to use the previous version.

Stephen "Highspeed" Kruse

General Mach Discussion / Re: Machine had a another brain fart.
« on: September 27, 2016, 03:08:40 PM »
Check your wiring to the stepper drivers and in particular make sure the DIR line has not come loose.

Stephen "Highspeed" Kruse

« on: September 27, 2016, 03:03:07 PM »
rodamo, if yours is like mine (I have a 6040, but it's the same situation), the USB "adapter" included is actually a motion controller.  However, it does not have the Mach3 plugin that is required to use it with this software.  I had to purchase a Mach3 compatible motion controller and the one I went with is the UC100.  It has the plugin for Mach3 and is one of the most feature compatible motion controllers of this type.  There are others as well, but most are replacements to the BOB (Breakout Board) inside the control box and you'll have to do some change out and wiring connections to use them.

There are a lot of opinions which ones are best and while I'm not touting the UC100 as my personal favorite, an external motion controller that plugs in to the 25-pin parallel port on your control box is easiest.

Hope that helps,

Stephen "Highspeed" Kruse

General Mach Discussion / Re: Tweaking the Tool-Change...
« on: September 26, 2016, 05:11:02 AM »
No, I'm using the UC100 with a Chinese 6040 machine and Mach3.


General Mach Discussion / Re: Tweaking the Tool-Change...
« on: September 26, 2016, 03:22:17 AM »
I have a custom made macro for the M6START that was compiled from segments of different code found here and elsewhere.  I've written it to utilize the "Tool Change Location" DROs on the settings page for the (manual) tool change location (X, Y only using a SafeZ move) and probe start height (Z DRO).  I have then added a couple of prompt/response pop-ups to tell what tool is being requested and to press OK when changed, then another to prompt for the Tool Zero probe (with the option to Cancel which skips that part of the macro).  No additional macros necessary.  When I'm all done, I press cycle start which returns to the original X and Y tool location by way of a SafeZ height then down to the original Z location then continues on with the program.  I've added a button onto the Settings screen which allows me to set the Tool Change Location DROs to the current tool location so my routine is to decide where I want that location to be prior to running the program by moving to that location and touching/clicking that button.

Often times, I want to skip the tool zero routine (e.g. the first tool change command in a program when I've already installed the tool and set the height with the Tool Zero button on the main screen) or maybe do a manual routine.  But now that you mentioned it, I've never really tried a manual tool probe after an M6Start macro has run, but the intent is that I would be able to select "Remember" to set the current location into the machine, jog to the tool zero location I want, press the Auto Tool Zero and then return with the "Return" button, making sure to select a SafeZ height.  I guess that is something I should test more thoroughly.

For your reference, below is my M6Start and M6End code.  This is Mach3 VBScript as a point of reference as I'm not sure if you're using 3 or 4.  (I'm assuming 3 with the 2010 screen set from reading your posts, but we know what assuming does...  ;) )


Code: [Select]
' Set variables to store some current, selected and user defined values

tool = GetSelectedTool() 'Value for Tool DRO at completion of tool change
CurrentFeedMode = GetOemDRO(819) 'Get current G0/G1 state
CurrentUnitsMM = GetOemLED(802) 'Get Current MM Units state
CurrentAbsCMode = GetOemLED(48) 'Get current G90/G91 state
CurrentFeedRate = GetOemDRO(818) 'Get the current Feed Rate
ToolChangeX = GetUserDRO(1200) 'Get user defined tool change location
ToolChangeY = GetUserDRO(1201)
ToolChangeZ = GetUserDRO(1202) 'NOTE: Z will be used for Auto Tool Zero start height
GageH = GetOEMDRO( 1001 ) 'Gage Block Height
ProbeD = 20 'Depth to probe for touch plate

' Move to user defined tool change location

If CurrentUnitsMM = FALSE Then 'Ensure measurement mode is in MM for macro
Code "G21"
End If
If IsSafeZ() Then 'If SafeZ is defined,
safeZ = GetSafeZ() 'use it for positioning commands
safeZ = 0 'Otherwise, moves are made at MC Z0
End If
Code" G53 G0 Z" & safeZ 'Position spindle for tool change
Code"G53 G0 X" & ToolChangeX & "Y" & ToolChangeY
While IsMoving()
PText = "Tool #" & tool & " requested.  (See Setup Sheet for details.)" _
& Chr(10) & "Insert requested tool and press OK to continue."
MachMsg(PText,"Tool Change Request",0)
SetCurrentTool( tool ) 'Set the Tool DRO to the new tool number

' Auto tool zero

AutoZeroPrompt = "Place probe for Auto Tool Zero and press OK" _
& Chr(10) & "Or press CANCEL to zero tool manually"
AutoZero = MachMsg(AutoZeroPrompt,"Auto Tool Zero",1)
If AutoZero = 1 Then 'AutoZero = 1, User pressed OK
Code "G53 G0 Z" & ToolChangeZ 'ToolChangeZ is MC for starting location of probing
While IsMoving()
Sleep (10)
ZCurrent = GetOemDro(802) 'Current Z DRO
ZNew = ZCurrent - ProbeD 'Probe depth end height
Code "G90F100" 'slow feed rate to 100 MM/MIN
Code "G31 Z" &ZNew 'Start the probe move
While IsMoving()
If GetOEMLed(825) = True Then 'Probing successful
ProbeTouch = GetVar(2002) 'Exact height touch plate was contacted
Code "G1 Z" & ProbeTouch 'Go there (corrects for potential over-run)
While IsMoving()
Call SetDro(2,GageH) 'Set Z DRO to adjusted value
FinalMove = GageH + 10
Code  "G0 Z" &FinalMove 'Raise probe off of touch plate
While IsMoving()
Message("Press Cycle Start to continue...")
Else 'Probe did not contact touch plate
Message("Zero not achieved - Check probe and try again manually")
End If
Else 'User selected Cancel on Auto Tool Zero prompt
Message("Zero tool manually and press Cycle Start to continue...")
End If


'Feed Rate

Code "F" &CurrentFeedRate 'restore starting feed rate

'G0/G1 State

If CurrentFeedMode = "80" Then 'Machine still in initial state at start of macro
Code "G0" 'so set move mode to G0
Code "G" & CurrentFeedMode 'Otherwise set move mode to previous value
End If

'G20/G21 State

If CurrentUnitsMM Then 'Units was previously set to mm
Code "G21"
Else 'Units was previously set to inches
Code "G20"
End If

'G90/G91 State

If CurrentAbsCMode Then 'System was using absolute coordinates
Code "G90"
Else 'System was using incremental coordinates
Code "G91"
End If       


Code: [Select]
'The default script here moves the tool back To m6start If Any movement has occured during the tool change..

x = GetToolChangeStart( 0 )
y = GetToolChangeStart( 1 )
z = GetToolChangeStart( 2 )
a = GetToolChangeStart( 3 )
b = GetToolChangeStart( 4 )
c = GetToolChangeStart( 5 )
If(IsSafeZ() = 1) Then
SafeZ = GetSafeZ()
Code "G53 G0 Z" & SafeZ
Code "G53 G0 Z0"
End If
Code "G0 A" & a' & "B" & b & "C" & c
Code "G0 X" & x & "Y" & y
Code "G0 Z" & z 

Hope that helps or at least gives you some ideas to work from.

Stephen "Highspeed" Kruse

General Mach Discussion / Re: how to configure the estop?
« on: September 25, 2016, 12:42:39 AM »
Cool!  Glad you got that figured out.  Like Dave said, simple things will keep us chasing our tails!


General Mach Discussion / Re: Mach3 Speed Setting Opposite
« on: September 23, 2016, 08:49:14 PM »
That is awesome! Glad I could help. And it gave me a chance to share some knowledge as well. PWM is pretty cool stuff actually. It's used a lot in my other hobby - remote control helicopters. I was hoping it would make sense to you and it sounds like it does.

Enjoy making saw dust and I wish you much success.


General Mach Discussion / Re: how to configure the estop?
« on: September 23, 2016, 06:29:13 AM »
It sounds like you're looking at the "Port 1 Pins Current State" LEDs on the Diagnostic screen.  Below this is a grouping of several LEDs labeled "Input Signals Current State".  At the bottom of this group is one labeled "Emergency".  What is that LED doing when you activate the E-Stop switch?  If it is not responding, then you do not have the Ports and Pins | Input Signals tab configured correctly and Mach3 will not respond to the switch.  Since you are seeing (I presume) the Port 1 Pins Current State" LED respond to the switch, the wiring appears to be ok.  However, you still need to tell Mach3 what pin this function is assigned to.  Get the EStop line enabled (green check) and make sure you set the port to 1 and pin to the pin you are using (pin 13 if I recall the earlier discussion correctly).  This should get the "Emergency" LED at least changing states in the "Input Signals Current State" section of the Diagnostic screen.  Then we can focus on getting it working with the correct logic with the "Active Low" setting if it is working backwards.  But the first step is getting that "Emergency" LED responding first.

Let us know what you see there and if you can get it changing states on that LED.

Stephen "Highspeed" Kruse

General Mach Discussion / Re: Mach3 Speed Setting Opposite
« on: September 23, 2016, 06:01:53 AM »
I had this same issue when I was first setting up my spindle for Mach3 speed control (instead of panel control on the VFD).  I was running a PWM converter to run the 0-10V signal as my BOB did not have a 0-10V output directly.  I believe the BOBs that have that built in still work the same way so the following discussion will still apply.

Mach3 puts out pulses and these need to be converted to the analog voltage.  The way that is done is through PWM (Pulse Width Modulation).  How that works is that a digital signal is a series of pulses.  PWM changes the length of time a signal is High vs. how long it is low.  This is called duty cycle and a 50% duty cycle would have the highs and lows at an equal length.  A duty cycle of 20% would have the high on for 1/5 of the overall cycle time from one pulse to the next whereas 80% would have the pulse high for 4/5 of the overall time.  The PWM conversion circuitry basically "smooths out" these pulses to an average voltage level and that will be between 0 and 10V DC.  So a 20% duty cycle would result in a 2V DC output to the VFD.

HOWEVER, many of the BOB circuits utilize an active low signal so the logic gets reversed - 20% duty cycle results in a low pulse for 1/5 of the overall cycle time and so on.  To fix this, I had to set Mach3 to an active low setting on the step column for the spindle setting in port and pins; motors tab.  This essentially inverts the signal so that when it hits the PWM conversion circuitry the duty cycle is in the correct polarity.  (i.e. low duty cycle results in shorter positive pulses and vice-versa.)

So the first thing to try would be change the setting of your Spindle Step configuration in Ports and Pins configuration under the Motor Outputs tab.  If it has a green check, click it to change it to the red "X"; if it is a red "X" change it to a green check.  That should do the trick.

Stephen "Highspeed" Kruse

The easiest way to check this is with a multimeter or continuity tester.  If you have continuity from where you want to connect the wire through to the tool itself then it should work.  I have the wire passing through the cable track up to the spindle head.  I fastened a 1/4 blade-type lug to the spindle mounting bracket with matching connector on the wire so that I can remove it and hook up a clip if needed for whatever reason.  Before I did this, I confirmed there is continuity from the bracket through the spindle to the tool mounted in the collet.  Then when I need to probe a tool, I pretest (you can use the diagnostics page to check the LED, but I've added one right on the Program Run page) as a final check prior to use by touching the touch plate to the tool.  I usually do a test probe using the Auto Tool Zero button or a manual G31 command from the MDI as well before running the program just to make sure all is in order.

Hope that helps,

Stephen "Highspeed" Kruse

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