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Having trouble getting set up
« on: February 22, 2010, 04:24:53 PM »
I'm a first time Mach user and I have installed a PCI parallel port on my computer running 32 bit xp. I purchased an Anaheim Automation 4 axis step driver with break-out board that they say is compatible with Mach3. I downloaded Mach 3 and successfully tested the driver. I then made the proper Dir and Step pin assignments according to the documentation provided by Anaheim. I have the correct port selected and input the address found in device manager. I tested the signal coming out of the Parallel port and it is sending a 5 volt signal when I hit the jog keys. However, the axis lights on the driver cards are not lighting up, nor are the "Port 1 pins current state" lights on the Mach3 diagnostics page. Are the Port 1 pin light supposed to light up when in use? Does this sound like a problem with my hardware, software? Any ideas?

Thanks
Re: Having trouble getting set up
« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2010, 02:39:29 PM »
Hi,

I'm having a similar problem.  Did you get any responses/resolution to your question?

Thanks.

regan.fulton@gmail.com

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Re: Having trouble getting set up
« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2010, 08:21:24 AM »
Do you have any data on your stepper drivers, or a link to the data for the drivers you are using ?.

Tweakie.
Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.  Winston Churchill.
Re: Having trouble getting set up
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2011, 09:40:03 PM »
Hi, I'm looking at all the parts and software that is needed to start up and am pretty perplexed by what all is needed. I would like to know what I need to get started. This is the list I've started with SX3 type mill. mach3, CAM program, and possibly Lazy Cam, Keling inc. KL-4813 power supply, C10 bidirectional breakout board, Gekodrive G320 Brush DC Drivers, Keling Technology KL23-130-60 DC Servo Motors, E4P OEM Miniature Optical Kit Encoder, CA-MICA4-SH-NC-4-Pin Micro unterminated shielded cable. That's the list so far. I'm looking at building a milling machine with XYZ movement. I've been reading about computers and I've figured out that if my computer will handle the CAD program it can handle the CAM/CNC part of the machining. I guess what I'm looking for is a list of generic termed hardware for a hobby CNC/CAD/CAM set up. I just don't want to think I have it all together and realize I've missed something and also so I can budget for it. Thanks for any help.
c.w.morrowiii@gmail.com

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Re: Having trouble getting set up
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2011, 11:12:17 AM »
Hi CW,

A lot of people have converted the X3 to CNC but it is quite an involved task. The standard leadscrews and thrust washers have quite a bit of backlash, an awful lot on the quill (Z axis) and many have replaced the leadscrews with ballscrews and proper thrust bearings adding considerably to the conversion cost.
If you have not already purchased the X3 then there may be better options such as the purchase of a little used, ex-educational machine such as a Denford, Boxford, Emco etc which are already CNC'd (eBay always seems to have on or two, bench top, ex-college machines listed). You would still have to replace the control electronics with more modern (microstepping) units such as Gecko's or similar but I think you would end up with a much better machine.
I have the X2 mill which is a wonderful little machine for manually milling most of the parts I need to make but I know it would cost at least double its purchase price to convert to CNC and even then it may not be truly suitable.
Your list of parts seems pretty complete although LazyCam comes with Mach3 and you may need belt and pulley or flexi couplings to connect the motors to the screws. (for a small machine like this, stepper motors would be a cheaper option than servo's). Also there would be some machining of parts required so some ally plate would be useful to budget for.

Just my thoughts.

Tweakie.
Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.  Winston Churchill.