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Author Topic: Thinking of buying Mach3  (Read 7867 times)

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Thinking of buying Mach3
« on: July 22, 2006, 11:25:19 PM »
 HI Everyone,

              I am considering  of getting mach3 to controll a homemade cnc router/engraver and I have a  question.

          Do I need encoders  on the stepper motors to let the mach3 know whats going on?
             I plan on using a driver board from hobbycnc and was wondering if this would be suitable? I am new at cnc.
         Any comments are appreciated. Regards Charlie

Hood

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Re: Thinking of buying Mach3
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2006, 04:13:33 AM »
No, with steppers you just need a drive for each motor and a breakout to connect everything to the parallel port.
Hood
Re: Thinking of buying Mach3
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2006, 08:17:41 AM »
Hi Hood,

                Thanks for the reply.

Quote
No, with steppers you just need a drive for each motor and a breakout to connect everything to the parallel port.
Hood

  So the amount of travel is calculated in the software? Do I need to set this up?  if so how?

Hood

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Re: Thinking of buying Mach3
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2006, 08:33:55 AM »
Yes you need to set up a step per unit. You need to know the pitch of the ballscrew (how far it travels per rotation) You also need to know the steps per revolution of your motors, any gearing you have and lastly whether your drives are full, half or micro stepping.
 There is also a button in Mach on the sttings page that you can use to set the steps per unit. You click on the button, choose an axis, tell it to move a distance, measure the actual distance travelled then mach will work it out for you. Then just repeat for the next axis etc.
 There are quite a few videos that you can download as well as the manual which will give you a good idea how to set things up. The trial version is also a good way to find out how things work, its fully functional but has some limitations such as max lines of code.
 Hood
« Last Edit: July 23, 2006, 08:35:39 AM by Hood »
Re: Thinking of buying Mach3
« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2006, 08:56:26 AM »
 Hi Hood,

             thanks. :)
Re: Thinking of buying Mach3
« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2006, 09:09:34 AM »
 Hi ,

                I thought of something else. I plan on milling pcbs.Will Mach2 or 3 import excellon files or gerber files?

Hood

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Re: Thinking of buying Mach3
« Reply #6 on: July 23, 2006, 09:13:05 AM »
Dont think it will import them directly but then again I dont have a clue what excellon or gerber files are. If you can convert them to DXF then you could use LazyCAM that comes with Mach.
 Maybe someone else will be able to give you a better answer.
Hood

Hood

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Re: Thinking of buying Mach3
« Reply #7 on: July 23, 2006, 09:14:31 AM »
Actually I have just had a look in LazyCAM and it seems it can importboth of the formats you have above.
Hood
Re: Thinking of buying Mach3
« Reply #8 on: July 23, 2006, 09:26:09 AM »
It will import Gerber but the Offset code is not finished :( Once that is done LazyCam will do the isolation cut for you :)
Fixing problems one post at a time ;)

www.newfangledsolutions.com
www.machsupport.com
Re: Thinking of buying Mach3
« Reply #9 on: July 23, 2006, 09:48:45 AM »
 Thanks.Thas what I wanted to know.