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Author Topic: Can Mach3 Do PCB Drilling using an NC file  (Read 20327 times)

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Can Mach3 Do PCB Drilling using an NC file
« on: March 09, 2012, 01:19:59 AM »
Hi Everyone

I am new to MACH3, but I have been using a CNC machine especially for Drilling and surface milling of PCB Boards. I just purchased a hobby CNC, and I want to know if it is possible to convert NC files to G-Code files, and then to MACH 3 connected to my hobby CNC for drilling and routing

Any help would be appreciated

Offline Tweakie.CNC

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Re: Can Mach3 Do PCB Drilling using an NC file
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2012, 02:45:41 AM »
Hi rcheng111,

No problem.

You could use the free program Eagle and it's associated processor to create both the PCB and the drill file but there are also many other alternatives to choose from.

Here is a link to get you started http://pcbgcode.org/

Tweakie.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2012, 02:47:57 AM by Tweakie.CNC »
Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.  Winston Churchill.
Re: Can Mach3 Do PCB Drilling using an NC file
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2012, 04:58:32 AM »
Hi Tweakie

Thanks for the link. I will try it out, and let you know how I get on.

Thanks again


Raymond

Offline Tweakie.CNC

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Re: Can Mach3 Do PCB Drilling using an NC file
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2012, 05:24:54 AM »
Thanks Ray,

I look forward to seeing your results.

Tweakie.

A sample of the quick and easy method of 'isolation routing'  ;)

Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.  Winston Churchill.
Re: Can Mach3 Do PCB Drilling using an NC file
« Reply #4 on: July 03, 2012, 06:42:02 AM »
Hi Everyone

I am new to MACH3, but I have been using a CNC machine especially for Drilling and surface milling of PCB Boards. I just purchased a hobby CNC, and I want to know if it is possible to convert NC files to G-Code files, and then to MACH 3 connected to my hobby CNC for drilling and routing

Any help would be appreciated
Hi rcheng111 you should be able to use .NC files in Mach3 as they are.
Regards
Nick

Offline Tweakie.CNC

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Re: Can Mach3 Do PCB Drilling using an NC file
« Reply #5 on: July 03, 2012, 08:05:48 AM »
Hi Nick,

As you have, quite correctly, pointed out Mach3 is able open / load an ‘.nc’ file.

Unfortunately, nothing is ever truly simple and the (Excellon format) .nc drill files contain many commands that Mach3 does not recognize also the absence of the Z axis commands further complicates the issue.
Just for reference http://www.excellon.com/manuals/program.htm

There are, however, a number of ‘free to use’ converter programs (some work better than others) to create GCode files from .nc files and one such program can be found here http://hans-w.com/download.htm

The similar Gerber files (.gbr) can, in many instances, be handled by LazyCam which will create the necessary GCode for Mach3 use but I have never tried LazyCam with an .nc drill file - maybe it could be persuaded ??

Hope this helps.

Tweakie.
Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.  Winston Churchill.
Re: Can Mach3 Do PCB Drilling using an NC file
« Reply #6 on: August 16, 2012, 03:14:07 AM »
Hi Nick,

As you have, quite correctly, pointed out Mach3 is able open / load an ‘.nc’ file.

Unfortunately, nothing is ever truly simple and the (Excellon format) .nc drill files contain many commands that Mach3 does not recognize also the absence of the Z axis commands further complicates the issue.
Just for reference http://www.excellon.com/manuals/program.htm

There are, however, a number of ‘free to use’ converter programs (some work better than others) to create GCode files from .nc files and one such program can be found here http://hans-w.com/download.htm

The similar Gerber files (.gbr) can, in many instances, be handled by LazyCam which will create the necessary GCode for Mach3 use but I have never tried LazyCam with an .nc drill file - maybe it could be persuaded ??

Hope this helps.

Tweakie.

Hi Tweakie thought you may like to look at this http://www.cambam.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=414.0
Regards
Nick

Offline Tweakie.CNC

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Re: Can Mach3 Do PCB Drilling using an NC file
« Reply #7 on: August 16, 2012, 03:47:50 AM »
Hi Nick,

Thank you for posting the link.

I can never get enough knowledge.  ;)

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