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Mach3 ruining parts
« on: February 07, 2017, 09:18:48 AM »
Hi anyone
I am having a serious problem with Mach3
I'm running a plasma cutter and plasma cutters being plasma cutters, sometimes an arc may fail to start, or the torch may cut out halfway through a cut.
Of course, you should be able to STOP, SELECT NEXT LINE, RUN FROM HERE. But this is not possible for me, the result being that a single mistake from either operator or machine results in complete loss of the work piece. This has cost me thousands by now and I am more than upset with the software.
Every time I select RUN FROM HERE, regardless of what line I start from, it jumps to line 13 and does nothing.
So essentially once I have stopped the machine for whatever reason, I must kiss my part goodbye, because the machine will not start from anywhere unless I restart the whole damn part programme! Obviously you can't do that with plasma as it will dive the torch, burn out the nozzle and try to cut existing cuts.
Please, can someone help me with this problem before it causes even more financial and business reputation damage to our small, struggling third world company.
Just lost 20USD this afternoon, last week it was another job and I am basically forced to accept only basic shape jobs out of fear of our machine ruining everything because of this one tiny ridiculous problem.

Offline Davek0974

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Re: Mach3 ruining parts
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2017, 10:33:23 AM »
I seriously doubt it is the fault of Mach3, what version are you running??

Unless specified by your THC maker (mine is) i would run 062 version for a start.

Why does it fail repeatedly? My plasma will ruin maybe one part in 50 or so - this is probably a months work for me as i don't use it every day, most of the time i can rescue the part by starting with the THC/Torch off, run the part and when i get near the fail i just flip the torch on and away we go, i did say most of the time  :)

There are other ways but now i generally cut my losses, move the part for best fit in CAD and start over.

I have no idea why it would always jump to line 13?
Bridgeport Mill, Mach3 V062, CSMIO-IP/A controller, AC Servo Drives
Re: Mach3 ruining parts
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2017, 02:44:32 PM »
So your machine has a torch problem and you blame the software not the torch? I can tell you that run from here does work. However you need to aware of a couple of things. Are you hitting STOP when the torch screws up? If so that is a problem because STOP will cause the machine to lose position. Instead always use FEED HOLD. Feed hold properly decelerates the motion and position is maintained. Then you can hit STOP and proceed to run from here. One more thing, Run From Here asks a question, can't remember what it is. Try answering NO and see what the results are with your hand near tge E-stop. Hope this helps. Please report back.
Re: Mach3 ruining parts
« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2017, 01:56:06 AM »
Hi,
I used Mach3 quite extensively to cut circuit boards using 0.4mm endmills and would blunt and break them fairly regularly.
I became quite adept at fitting a new endmill, touching off and restarting the job from just prior to the breakage point using
'Run From Here'. It does require a little practice to understand the process Mach goes thru to restart, I had a few disasters before
I cottoned on but it does work.

Blaming the software cuts no ice here, I know it works, I just had to be patient and figure out how.

Craig
My wife left with my best friend...
     and I miss him!
Re: Mach3 ruining parts
« Reply #4 on: February 08, 2017, 02:16:41 AM »
Hi,
just had a thought that might explain why the code jumps to line 13.

I have recently started using a software utility called Autoleveller which assists greatly in 'levelling' a blank circuit board
before routing. Amongst other things it does it puts a G31 probe code near the beginning of the gcode job. When you
execute 'Run From Here' the gcode rewinds and Mach runs thru it but without executing any motion to establish its settings
as if it were in the middle of the job. It doesn't like the G31 probe code, it stops there and won't progress to the point where
I wish it to restart.

May I suggest that you inspect the code at or just before line 13 and it may well be a similar situation. By this I mean that Mach
is asking itself a question ( G31 basically asks 'what is z at probe strike') but because it is motion inactive in 'Run From Here' mode
it can't answer the question and stops.

I found it necessary to delete that particular line in order to get 'Run From Here' to work with my circuit board jobs.

Craig
My wife left with my best friend...
     and I miss him!
Re: Mach3 ruining parts
« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2017, 03:21:00 AM »
Hi all
It most certainly is not my torch causing the problem in the code, of that I'm certain. My torch works fine but occasionally the nozzle blows during a cut or it passes over rust and doesn't arc. These I fix by either replacing the nozzle or adjusting the pierce height.
I'm currently running Version R3.043.066
Thanks for the advice regarding the STOP and FEED HOLD options, wasn't even aware of that.
The big problem I'm having (and the one causing grey hairs) is the freezing on line 13.

Joeaverage
I believe you may have hit the nail on the head there. I checked some of my codes and sure enough, before every line 13 is a line 12 with a G31 (The first cut probe function)
I will take your advice of trying to edit the code so it ignores them and get back to the forum here.
I will say this though, if the problem is that mach3 cannot interpret G31s during RFH then that is exactly a software issue. I hope later versions have a bugfix for this as it can be devastating for newbies on large jobs! I remember there being an option in config that relates to either G31 or G28, I'll check that out too.

Thanks for the feedback, this forum is very much alive, unlike so many others. Amazing to see people using Mach 3 for PCB milling, pick n place, punch presses and 3d printing! I wonder if it would work with robot arms?

Online Tweakie.CNC

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Re: Mach3 ruining parts
« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2017, 03:27:47 AM »
Quote
Amazing to see people using Mach 3 for PCB milling, pick n place, punch presses and 3d printing! I wonder if it would work with robot arms?

Mach3 does not do kinematics but it will accurately drive a robot arm if the GCode is produced using 'teach mode'.  ;)

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

Offline Davek0974

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Re: Mach3 ruining parts
« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2017, 03:27:58 AM »
Oliver - sorry to be the bearer of bad news but there will be NO future updates of Mach3, it is now legacy software and being replaced by Mach4 at some stage.

No bug fixes, no changes, it is what it is i'm afraid.

Mostly it works just fine as long as you accept its little quirks and foibles :)
Bridgeport Mill, Mach3 V062, CSMIO-IP/A controller, AC Servo Drives
Re: Mach3 ruining parts
« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2017, 04:11:40 AM »
Oh btw, my THC is the PromaTHC250 from Sweden I think. It is cheep and simple and I really like the thing, it fits on a DIN rail and has only six wires to connect. Getting it to run required only minor modification of one of sheetCAMs generic post processors. 200USD Good buy! other than that, I'm using Gecko drives G203s on X and Y, a TB6560 for my Z axis, Nema 23 on Z and Nema34 on X and Y.
Re: Mach3 ruining parts
« Reply #9 on: February 08, 2017, 04:17:55 AM »
Brilliant!, Teach mode is what I wanted to try out! I've got a 3d printer and some nema 17s, Will be a great project for education and fun.
I guess that if Mach 4 is to replace Mach3 it will probably address some of the shortfalls of its predecessor. Look forward to trying it out!
Til then, Mach3 it is, thanks for the info!