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Author Topic: My Two Cents  (Read 12822 times)

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My Two Cents
« on: December 21, 2005, 05:43:07 PM »
Well, it seems I've jumped in to cnc with my eyes closed, I mean to say, I thought it would be fairly easy to set up a small commercial machine. How wrong I am. I seem to be needing an endless list of items, and I don't think I'm finished buying stuff. Nobody I've worked with, in shops that have cnc machines, ever mentioned anything about breakout boards, MPG's, ModBus (what is that) or that pump thing I keep seeing. So, I purchase Mach 2, then upgrade to Mach 3. I have a screen that doesn't have buttons for Machine Co-Ord's or any of the ones next to it, only the LED's. I get the screen builder and find an empty window with a dropdown box with buttons that show me stuff I can't seem to use. I've been through the PDF manual, and can't understand half of the information contained therein. Oh My God, what have I gotten myself into this time!!!! I'm sorry for this rant but I think I really need some step by step help and advise. Is anyone interested in taking on a real green nooby?
Re: My Two Cents
« Reply #1 on: December 21, 2005, 06:50:53 PM »
I will do ll that I can to help you get this figured out. There are many things that you are not going to need to know:
1. ModBus is a way to add IO for running a toolchanger or MPG's and so on.
2. Macro pump is for running a macro all the time  (This is not needed most times)
3. Many of the other settings in Mach3
4. MPG is not needed

You are going to have to have the same screen as me... This will help me get you up and running.

Please tell me more about what you need to know and what you need to know more about.
Fixing problems one post at a time ;)

www.newfangledsolutions.com
www.machsupport.com

Vmax

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Re: My Two Cents
« Reply #2 on: December 22, 2005, 10:58:51 AM »
Hi String, First you have to come up with a plan of what you want your machine to do and what you have to work with. List that plan here and then we can start to help you. I just finished up a complete retrofit of a Bridgeport Boss CNC mill. I felt your pain when I first started. But as you get into your project and with the help of all the fine folks here it will get much much easier as you go. Do one step at a time, Ask plenty of questions, finish it up and go to the next step, Repeat. Before you know it you will be done and will also know what  "IF GetOemLed(0) =(0) Then"  means too.   ;)  Terry
Re: My Two Cents
« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2005, 11:57:50 AM »
Hi,

You don't mention the videos on www.machsupport.com. How have you found them? Your original post suggests that you are trying to start with the difficult things. The Using Mach3Mill manual does not cover the current screens (yet) but with the videos and Chapter 3 you ought to be able to get a good feel for things even before you connect the machine.

Do not despair - "One brick at a time" builds a spendid mansion!

John Prentice
Re: My Two Cents
« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2005, 05:47:33 PM »
Heres my plan. I will only do 2d milling for now, until I learn more about this stuff. I want to be able to park my spindle at one place every time I want to go home. I want a safe Z when I move to home, to clear hold downs and anything that may be in the way. I want a place to start my milling that is suitable to my part shape. I have configured my motors and now I need to set my limit switches, but I can't do that until I get my breakout board and power supply. I have a K2cnc machine with a 14" x 25" work envelope, servo motors, Geko 201's, 1/2-10 lead screws. I will use a variable speed router for my spindle and be cutting mainly .125 - .250 Alum. and plastics. I have a ton of designs to mill, or should I say engrave. I will be using V Carve Wizard for my G code toolpath generator. So I guess that's it in a nutshell, what do you think?

Vmax

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Re: My Two Cents
« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2005, 11:34:58 PM »
String that is a good start. I recomend the Breakout board from Bob Campbell. It is a very well designed board that won't let you down and good service to boot. Do you have a picture of your machine we could look at? Are your servos mounted and wired yet? What type of cabinet are you using to house the electronics? Are your limit switches mounted and ready to go? What scheme of limit/Home switches do you have?    Terry
Re: My Two Cents
« Reply #6 on: December 24, 2005, 07:13:25 AM »
Hi Terry, yes my motors are wired into a very sturdy box with the Geckos, and I should soon have my breakout board with power supply after the holiday. I have been successful at configuring the drives and doing trial xyz movements. I did not, however, set up my limit switch as of yet.

Vmax

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Re: My Two Cents
« Reply #7 on: December 24, 2005, 10:42:10 AM »
String I am confused If you have everything where you can make the sevos move why do you need a breakout board. It would seem that to make the servos work you already have that part wire to the computer???? Is everything wired to a computer?  Terry
Re: My Two Cents
« Reply #8 on: December 26, 2005, 09:31:46 AM »
Terry, this is where my problems begin. The electronics part. Everywhere I see members, and users having their limit switches hooked up through powered breakout boards, so I must follow suit, right? So just how is the breakout board wired up. I need to see photo and real simple schematics. I'm severely electronically challenged. Can you help me with this?

Vmax

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Re: My Two Cents
« Reply #9 on: December 29, 2005, 08:30:10 AM »
String did you have the geckos wired to the computer to make them move to test? Do you plug the cable into the printer port on the computer. I am assuming you have bought a kit version of your machine is that correct? If you did odds are that a breakout board is part of your electronics kit and all you need to do is wire your limits/home switches in. Did the kit come with a manual?  Terry