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Some basic Mach3 questions
« on: October 09, 2006, 09:59:12 PM »
I recently had been having some major issues with  MAXnc10cl that never would work right with Mach3 software. So I just completed my own controller  design that will fit in the same box, using all my own code and drivers.  I did use the exact same pinouts, although I set mine up to run step and direction instead of quadrature like Max was doing. 

If anyone knows the answer to these questions below please let me know so I can tighten up a few loose ends on the processor coding:


Would this be set up as a normal low from the controller, with a high meaning the controller has requested Mach3 to stop?  Since I wont be using MAXNC mode r drivers anylonger, where do I program this enable in Mach3?


What is G61 Exact Stop Mode and what does Mach do with it?  I never used it so maybe it isn't needed.


Since I will no longer use the MAXNC CL mode, I will likely use a mach3mill setup.  How do these outputs get programmed, and where do I look to set them up to send the info to the controller?  When do you want to ever reset the controller, and when to stop motors?  It seems pressing reset does the same thing as stop motors.  Reseting the controller means losing encoder variable counts, so I am not sure when this would ever need to happen.

4. When using M8, how do most people use this feature?  I would like to set up a mist on a timed basis, not always on, so I'd like to program the M8 to run on/off at set times.  I assume it can only be used inside the gcode as entered, but it would really be nice to have mach3 set up with a timer and duty/freq for mist/flood.

The controller runs as is with none of the above features, but I wanted to put in everything that might be useful.  I am counting both step pulses to each axis and comparing to the encoders.  In the event of an encoder shortage, what is the best method to use to stop Mach3 instantly?  I was going to have the processor send a pulse to pin 12 as an estop. 

Thanks for any suggestions.

Re: Some basic Mach3 questions
« Reply #1 on: October 09, 2006, 10:12:21 PM »
I think the best that you can do is to trip an Estop :(

Good work on fixing the control
Fixing problems one post at a time ;)

Re: Some basic Mach3 questions
« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2006, 11:03:55 PM »
I use M7 instead of M8 but it's kind of the same deal.  M7 for me runs my Dust Collector and it is always on.  Mach doesn't have the timer capability to do what you want so, you can either write M8 & M9 commands into your G-code to have your mist come on and off at certain times in your program (this seems like kind of a hassle to me though) or, I guess you could purchase an interval relay from your local electronic supply (or McMaster for that matter) and set it up to come on and off at whatever interval you like.

Good Luck!
Re: Some basic Mach3 questions
« Reply #3 on: October 10, 2006, 01:07:54 AM »
Thanks Brian.  I looked at it like this, I could send it back again for the second time knowing I'd still have problems forever, or just bite the bullet and build a board exactly like I wanted.  I used the Propeller chip from Parallax,  8 processors in one package,  so each motor runs on its own cog, there is a quadrature object reading 3 encoders updating their counters.  It was a beast of a project to get the right drivers and current regulation tackled, but well worth it for the freedom to know how to deal with problems myself, plus add mods as needed,  This board is an exact retrofit size for the MAXNC10CL controller.  It will actually be way cooler than theirs.  I can shut off the motors on a short timer when they are not in use, but they can self correct of they move out of position.  Also, I set this one  up halfstepping which seems much smoother that the old whole stepping sound. 

Sid you just gave me a great idea!   I had put in some extra mosfets for future use like mist/vac etc.  So I can very easily just make some code on the processor that sets the freq and duty of the mosfet triggering the mister/vacuum.  How simple, but I didn't think of it.  Just turn on M8 in the Gcode at the top, and off at the bottom, run it to pin14 for example, telling the processor to start the mosfet.

Thanks guys. 
« Last Edit: October 10, 2006, 01:12:26 AM by originator »