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Author Topic: Question about Retrofit of Anilam Crusader II Controlled Knee Mill  (Read 4660 times)

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Hi All.  I have a 2hp SuperMax knee mill that has already been converted to use an Anilam Crusader II controller.  The servo motors are still working well but they are old SEM Permanent Magnet DC analog motors.  I want to upgrade the servo drives (if necessary) but more importantly I want to upgrade the controller to something newer.  I want to be able to use my 3D CAD/CAM program to create g-code and tooling paths that can be downloaded to the new controller.  I need help understanding what I will need to purchase and what will need to be modified on the machine to use Mach3 as an upgraded controller.  The Anilam controller uses the tachometer on the motors and the glass scales mounted on each axis to determine the true position of the tool.  What is a good way to attack this issue?  What are good servo drivers for these types of motors?  Is there a vendor out there that has a 3/4 axis controller module that will utilize the glass scale and motor tachometer or do I need to update the machine to use ball screws and encoders?  Even with the ball screws and encoders on the motors, what are the best controllers (under $1500) to use to interface between the Mach3 computer and the servo drivers?  Any input would be appreciated.  Thanks.   

Offline Hood

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Re: Question about Retrofit of Anilam Crusader II Controlled Knee Mill
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2013, 05:02:20 PM »
All depends on what you want to do really. If you wish to keep the existing amplifiers  then you will need to use one of the external controllers that work with Mach and can control analogue amps.
 The one I am using on the Chiron VMC I am currently doing is the CSMIO/IP-A from http://www.cs-lab.eu/en/index.php
There is also the DSPMC from http://www.vitalsystem.com/web/motion/dspmc.php and the  Kflop with Kanalog from http://dynomotion.com/KFLOP
If the glass scales are 5v ttl output then you could use them but you may have issues tuning things if you have backlash. The Tach will be used by your existing amplifiers.

If you wish to get new drives capable of Step/Dir input then you could look at the DG3S from www.cncdrives.com  If you go that route then you would not need the tach and could use the glass scales as the encoder input like above but again tuning will not be easy. The other route would be to put encoders on the motors instead of the scales. You could use the parallel port with these drives but personally I would still get an external motion controller. CS-Lab do two step/dir capable ones, the Kflop can be used for step/dir and Vital systems have one as well, think its called HiCon. Then there is also the SmoothStepper (Ethernet version is best option)

I would imagine your existing peripherals such as limits and external switches will be 24v so if you go with the smoothstepper and possibly the kflop you will have to convert to 5v, the others can use 24v I/O.

Hood
Re: Question about Retrofit of Anilam Crusader II Controlled Knee Mill
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2013, 06:06:25 PM »
Hood, thanks for the info.  I was having trouble finding vendors that would be able to support what I want to do.  This helps a ton!  One more question, would you change to a ball screw on each of the axes or continue to use the ACME style lead screw?  I'm concerned with the backlash currently in the system and the amount of error that would cause with the new system.  Thanks again for the help. 

Offline Hood

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Re: Question about Retrofit of Anilam Crusader II Controlled Knee Mill
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2013, 06:23:18 PM »
I would definitely go with ballscrews.
Hood