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Print to Cut functionality & Mach3 on router
« on: February 18, 2013, 08:34:55 AM »
Is there way that this functionality can be added to Mach3. Something like AXYZ AVS Vision Registration System or integrate i-Cut from Esko.

http://www.a2mc-cnc.com/downloads/docs/files/devices/software/avs/AXYZ%20Vision%20System.pdf

http://www.icutvision.com/

Offline Chaoticone

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Re: Print to Cut functionality & Mach3 on router
« Reply #1 on: February 18, 2013, 07:05:22 PM »
Welcome to the forum cejdasan, are you looking to register something by sight? Have a look at this topic, it may be what your looking for.


http://www.machsupport.com/forum/index.php/topic,22932.msg160769.html#msg160769

Brett
;D If you could see the things I have in my head, you would be laughing too. ;D

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Re: Print to Cut functionality & Mach3 on router
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2013, 06:03:35 AM »
Hi Brett,

Klaus video plug-in is not really suitable for our needs. His plug-in is more about aligning the whole cut file on substrate. It took me quite long time to get my head around it. Here it goes:

What we are looking for is essentially way to add registrations marks (dots) around individual parts in Illustrator (or any other designs package). Dots needs to be in different layer and would have its own cut path which needs to be processed by camera first before any machining takes place. What normally happens when you print on vinyl and mount it on hard board is that the printed image gets distorted. Similar distortions happen when you print directly on rigid board. These distortions needs to be compensated fro before the cut path is executed. That is where the camera comes to play. It drives along the sheet and reads the predefined spots from design package and records its position than it compare it with the actual design file. When it finds that the positions are not matching it applies corrections to cut file before machining. Camera must be possible to be assigned as tool in Mach as it needs to be able to follow the dot tool path. Software what work with the camera must be able to compensate for distortions and be able to change the machined tool path. The compensated tool path can be then machined.

There are packages on the market which has this functionality i-Cut or Optiscout but they are expensive and has lot of functionality which we simply do no require. More importantly they taking over control of the machine to execute the machine code which means that some of the advanced machining strategies are not possible.

The best solution I could find was AXYZ AVS app which is add-on and when installed it becomes part of their A2MC controller. It is proprietary to AXYZ International and it is written for WindowsCE which is OS on their controller.

We have been running successfully our router in my old company by Mach3 and been happy with its performance and features. If print to cut functionality would be possible to add in similar manner as AXYZ did it with their controller it surely could be good money spinner as many smaller sign and printing companies would find this feature attractive. You can use simple IP web camera with LED lighting and this app/add-on to cut printed shapes from rigid substrates.

Hope it make sense.

Regards.

Petr.

Offline Tweakie.CNC

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Re: Print to Cut functionality & Mach3 on router
« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2013, 10:39:48 AM »
Thinking about this…

Provided the distortion (difference in printed image size) was linear then if the printed image contained 3 dots in a dimensionally known position (similar to the illustration) then the camera could be used to measure the actual distance between Datum and 1 to get the angle of rotation or skew and the Y axis scale factor and then between Datum and 2 to get the X axis scale factor (again compensating for skew). The calculations could all be done automatically in a script similar to the previously linked thread.

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

Offline BR549

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Re: Print to Cut functionality & Mach3 on router
« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2013, 01:12:12 PM »
Why not just process the original art , Raster to Vector and get a cut file of the outside contour.

(;-) TP

Offline RICH

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Re: Print to Cut functionality & Mach3 on router
« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2013, 09:41:30 PM »
You can use CopyCat to get gcode of the image using a Web Cam. Backplot it and you will have a dxf / drawing which you can manipulate in CAD. Can be very accurate depending on Web cam used and care taken to bring the
image to correct dimensions.

Just a different way and agree with Terry. ;)

RICH

Offline stirling

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Re: Print to Cut functionality & Mach3 on router
« Reply #6 on: April 25, 2013, 02:58:33 AM »
If I understand the problem correctly we're talking about an AUTOMATED PRODUCTION RUN system where we're printing and cutting out 10s/100s/1000s?  off. At least that's what the OP's second link infers. (the first link is broken).

Each printed image has to be automatically registered on the cut bed. But the system has to deal with RUN-TIME X,Y displacement PLUS skew PLUS distortion.

So I think it goes something like this: You have a cut path which has been created from the original artwork. Then a print is delivered to the cut bed, a camera then follows the cut path and makes note of where the registration marks are in relation to where they should be. It then modifies the cut path to match THIS particular instance and the knife does it's job. Then the next print is loaded and the whole process is repeated LIVE.

I may of course have got completely the wrong end of the stick

Ian
« Last Edit: April 25, 2013, 03:01:03 AM by stirling »
Re: Print to Cut functionality & Mach3 on router
« Reply #7 on: April 28, 2013, 06:23:13 AM »
Hi Ian,

You are absolutely correct. That is what we are looking for. Controller which has this capability and does not cost arm and leg.

The document I was referring to in my first post could be found on www.a2mc-cnc.com website. It is dedicated website about machine controller from AXYZ International. In the software section you can scroll down and you find AXYZ Vision system icon and bellow is menu from which you can select the pdf I was referring to in my first post. They might be blocking direct download from other website. The only way then might be to go to A2MC website and view the pdf or go to my second post and the file is attached on the bottom of the post.

This week I had discussion with AXYZ technician about the pros and cons of the AVS app and i-CUt and Optiscout packages. It became very clear that there are benefits to have the application be running inside of controller as there are not programing and running issues. AXYZ in its app do not support non-linear distortions which are created by printing vinyl and laminating the print onto hard board/material. That in itself does not mean you can not get acceptable results when processing such substrates. You just have to add some bleed around the shape itself which we normally do when contour cutting printed vinyl on plotter. They only recommended to apply printed vinyl by flatbed applicator (RollsRoller www.rollsroller.co.uk or similar) to keep the distortions to minimum and add bleed. Results are comparable to productivity packages as I-Cut or Optiscout. These softwares are aimed on high volume production which we are certainly not. But if you ask any signmaker whether he would wish his router could not only cut shapes but cut printed shapes too you always receive cheers. It is one of the areas which seems to be growing rapidly but is left unattended by producers of universal CNC controllers. I was looking extensively all over the web whether there is not some Chinese manufacturer but without success.

If anyone knows about such package please post the link. It would be very much appreciated.

Tweakie seems to be very good with math. Perhaps he could have the skills to write such add-on software and make himself some buck.

Regards.

Petr.

Offline Tweakie.CNC

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Re: Print to Cut functionality & Mach3 on router
« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2013, 11:59:42 AM »
Obviously I am missing something ‘big-time’ here but I fail to understand the complication with cutting a linearly distorted graphic.

Picture1 – Graphic as produced in CAD, complete with registration markers.

Picture 2 – Cut tool-path produced in CAM (from the original artwork) as shown in Mach3.

Picture 3 – Graphic as printed (with exaggerated linear distortion and skew).

Picture 4 – Original Mach3 cut tool-path corrected for distortion and skew (Scale & Rotation) using camera location of the 3 markers and a basic bit of high school trig.

Perhaps someone could explain…

Tweakie.





« Last Edit: April 28, 2013, 12:01:30 PM by Tweakie.CNC »
Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.  Winston Churchill.

Offline stirling

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Re: Print to Cut functionality & Mach3 on router
« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2013, 01:14:24 PM »
Hi Tweakie

As I understand it the problem is that you've used the phrase "linear" distortion and Petr has used the phrase "non-linear distortion"

Imagine an image printed on a rubber sheet which is then pulled at many different points in all sorts of directions with different force.

At least that's how I understand the problem.

Ian