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strange results with laptops.
« on: September 20, 2009, 05:29:51 AM »
I've got two bench top mills, a denford novatech and a boxford 260vmc, and I've converted both to mach3.

The denford's logic is 5v and the boxford's logic is 12v, and I'm getting wierd problems with different laptops when i try to run the machines.

Configs are correct on both machines.

They both run fine on my desktop which is a dual core, but if i use a pentium 4 toshiba laptop, the denford runs well but the boxford wont run at all.

With another pentium 4 dell laptop both machines have problems and stall at anything above 1000mm/min, but with a trusty old pentium 3 tiny laptop i can run 3000mm/min on the boxford, and the denford has no problems either.

Any thoughts ?

Offline Jeff_Birt

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Re: strange results with laptops.
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2009, 10:38:00 AM »
That is why they say the use of laptops is not supported on the Mach download page. A laptop is full of both HW and software designed to improve battery life. It does that by slowing down the processor to match the computational load. Slowing down the processor is absolutely the worst thing you could do with Mach. It might be possible to run a utility program that keep the processor from slowing down, sometimes that works sometimes it does not. If you want to use a laptop then your best bet is to use a SmoothStepper: http://soigeneris.com/Warp9.aspx.
Happy machining , Jeff Birt
 
Re: strange results with laptops.
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2009, 10:40:15 AM »
thanks for the reply, i think a couple of desktops are needed. :)

Offline RICH

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Re: strange results with laptops.
« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2009, 11:59:07 AM »
There is a thread in here were a number of folks have talked about laptops.
I have an old dead dog NEC that works fine, yet the Dell Laptop can't be used without a SS ( the pulses are really bad out of it and there is nothing that can be done about it).You just never know!
RICH
Re: strange results with laptops.
« Reply #4 on: September 20, 2009, 12:01:36 PM »
the tiny laptop i have that runs both machines is old'ish. seems that the old ones maybe the way to go if i want to stick to a laptop.

Offline RICH

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Re: strange results with laptops.
« Reply #5 on: September 20, 2009, 12:38:02 PM »
For lack of a better word, the "dead dog" 400mhz/512 memory laptop is lacking if you want to use video or want quick screen update or whatever. 
Re: strange results with laptops.
« Reply #6 on: September 20, 2009, 12:51:29 PM »
this one takes a second or two to update after a config change. I'm throwing xp on an old desktop i've got here atm, i'll see what results that gives.
Re: strange results with laptops.
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2009, 04:02:06 PM »
Laptop Problems.
I have converted a mill and a lathe using desktops, no problem. I am making a plasma cutter and portable would be good hence the laptop. I have an old dell inspiron 1000, stopped as much background stuff as I could and fitted a bidirectional PCMCIA parallel converter. Set up Mach3 assigned pins 2,3,4,5,Xdir,X step, Y dir, Y step and checked pulse trains, very flakey and pulses on direction pins??
Changed the windows power interface from ACPI to Standard PC. Pulses now good but still have the same step pulse train on both step and direction pins, tried changing pin numbers and disabling pins in Mach3 but no joy, pulses just stay on the same pins. Tried inputs to the PC, they work.
So two problems, no direction signals and rather annoyingly windows assigns a different device number to the parallel port on each startup so I have to enter this in Mach3 before I start. Any ideas anyone. ( I know, use a desktop)!!
« Last Edit: December 02, 2009, 04:08:33 PM by JohnW »

Offline Hood

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Re: strange results with laptops.
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2009, 04:17:26 PM »
Any ideas anyone. ( I know, use a desktop)!!

Or get a SmoothStepper

Hood

Offline Jeff_Birt

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Re: strange results with laptops.
« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2009, 07:02:05 PM »
I second what Hood said. I've jumped through all the hoops trying to get Mach to run on a laptop through the parallel port and its just not worth the effort; there is a 90% chance of it not working properly 'no matter what' on a laptop. With a SmoothStepper I have only ever heard of one single laptop (a Toshiba) that would not work.
Happy machining , Jeff Birt