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New Chinese 3040, the good, the bad, and a few questions
« on: November 07, 2015, 10:06:07 AM »
Hi All

My new 3040 router has arrived and it was a day early. So now the "fun" begins.

The Good

It's bigger than I expected, I have been sort of guesstimating with a tape measure but now I can see it in the flesh it's quite big and heavy, the delivery driver was struggling trying to carry it.

It was quite well packed, enormous box with plenty of padding so it arrived safely even though it was dispatched from Germany, the box has a nice piece of thin ply in the bottom which will make a couple of sacrificial beds.

You do seem to get quite a lot of machine for your money if I can get it to work properly without going crazy in the process.

The Bad

As supplied the Electrics are potentially dangerous. The mains lead supplied has a standard 6A IEC (kettle type) plug at the machine end but at the other it's a different story It has a two pin foreign plug on it which has a facility for an earth pin but it's not fitted this then connects to a travel adaptor thing which again is three pole to connect to U.K. square pin sockets.
This means that the entire machine is running unearthed which, unless the controller is double insulated which I very strongly suspect it isn't, presents a serious safety problem.
Safety issues aside running the whole thing unearthed (apart from through the parallel port which will earth through the P.C.) will most likely cause all sorts of interference problems.

So unless anyone knows why I shouldn't I'm going to to replace this with a standard IEC to U.K. 3 pin lead, I have loads of them as most of my audio and computer gear uses them.

Before I actually apply power to it I am going to take the lid off the controller and give it a thorough "going over" just in case there are any other electrical "nasties" lurking in there.

The single sheet " instructions " are pretty much useless but I was expecting this and am prepared, The manual on the disk is a little better and I have a copy already which I am in the process of "translating" if anyone is interested.

The supplied software disk looks like someone's been playing Rugby with it but surprisingly it does seem to read O.K. It's got a fairly old copy of Mach 3 on it D1.90.038 just the demo I think
but I already have a newer version installed anyway and I can easily put up with the demo limits until I have things running.

I have not fitted the steppers yet but there seems to be a little backlash in the X axis. I haven't measured it but I reckon it's about 10 - 15 Thou'. It feels like the whole feed screw is moving slightly axially and the X axis screw feels a little rough.

And now for the questions newbie ones I know but this is my first CNC machine.

What is best to lubricate it with, how much and how often, does it even need lubricating.

Can I adjust the X axis axial play to take out the backlash, if so how.

Is there any reason not to change the dodgy power cable for an earthed one.

Regards Mark.

P.S. Getting quite excited now hoping to hear my first stepper motor "squeak" very soon.
Initial problems sorted first stepper squeaks
« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2015, 04:47:40 AM »
Hi All

Update on the new machine

I found the cause of the backlash, the ballnut was not quite tight in it's housing, a quick tweak with an Allen Key fixed it.

I went ahead and put an earthed cable on. having first had a look inside the controller to my surprise it quite well built and modern inside and the earthing is fine checked it from the earth pin on the plug to one of the case screws.

So I connected all the axes and the spindle and turned on the controller. No bangs or pops, no smoke and the steppers locked as they should. Spindle next so I very gently turned it up and lo and behold it started to turn. I left it at low revs for a few minutes to bed in the brushes and had another check that nothing was getting hot. All was well so I slowly inched it up in small steps until I was up to full speed slight resonance vibration at certain speeds but overall quite good.

Switched off and set up mach 3 according to the none too easy to understand "manual". and connected the controller.

Restarted, Computer first then Mach 3 to make sure it was talking O.K. then the controller. I checked Em stop was out and hit reset

I began pressing the jog keys and YES! my first stepper squeaks all 3 axes appeared to be moving smoothly.

I  jogged it to near the centre of all the axes and loaded up the roadrunner GCode. On running it it was wonderful all the axes squeaking and whining like an out of tune bagpipe and moving in perfect unison

It was then time to check that my steps per was right. It was,  on a 1mm programmed travel my DTI was reading exactly 1mm travel back and forth repeatably on all axes.

So Far so good and it was much more painless than I expected  after some of the horror stories about these things.

but next comes the big crunch putting a tool in it and actually cutting something. (I could have phrased that better, a crunch is what I don't want).

Regards Mark

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Re: New Chinese 3040, the good, the bad, and a few questions
« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2015, 04:52:49 AM »
Excellent result Mark.  ;)

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