Hello Guest it is December 14, 2019, 09:41:19 PM

Author Topic: Mach4 lathe / turning general state of development question  (Read 1443 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Not been following mach4 for a while and I'm about to start upgrading an old CNC lathe.

I was wondering from those of you using mach4 for turning, are there any deficiencies or issues at present?

Hoping to use it with a quadrature encoder for spindle sync.

Motion controller will be a pokeys 57e (have separate discussion in the pokeys section on that, trying not to cross post)

So this is more of a general question, what would lathe users think is missing (someone has recommended to me use a centroid acorn, but I don't have one and cannot see what it does mach4 will not or could not do)

Plus I have a mach4 hobby licence to hand and a pokeys 57e (and an ess, but don't go there!!)
Rob

Albert Einstein ― “If you can't explain it to a six year old, you don't understand it yourself.”
Re: Mach4 lathe / turning general state of development question
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2018, 09:17:20 AM »
We've got a few lathes running Mach4 with the HiCON Integra. 
I've got an encoder hooked to the spindle to give us a true RPM and that allows us to thread just fine and we are able to us CSS. 
Tool changer hooked up on one of the turning centers no problem and work offsets are consistent.
Chad Byrd
Re: Mach4 lathe / turning general state of development question
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2018, 09:34:28 AM »
Thanks Chad, much appreciated for your post
Rob

Albert Einstein ― “If you can't explain it to a six year old, you don't understand it yourself.”
Re: Mach4 lathe / turning general state of development question
« Reply #3 on: July 27, 2018, 11:47:09 AM »
Not many people are using M4 for lathe so little attention is paid to it.  Most motion controller vendors have tested their boards on mills with only a little time if any on lathe.  Only a few support threading at this time.

To my knowledge Acorn does not allow you to modify its screen/interface.  It is kinda like apple products, you get a solid platform but you can't change/access anything.

HTH

RT
Re: Mach4 lathe / turning general state of development question
« Reply #4 on: July 27, 2018, 12:09:20 PM »
Tuttle, thanks for taking the time.

Most start on 3 axis router, mill, plasma I guess with mach3, not many look at lathes I guess.

The centroid acorn seems expensive (or I could not see for what) for what it does taking into account the pro licence and the cost of an acorn.

Ok I have a mach4 licence and a pokeys, with the sync board for threading.  So no real oncost there.

I asked the question on the centroid forum and got a sort of blank answer that the only benefit was that the software was designed to work seamlessly with the acorn...   http://centroidcncforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=60&t=1954   . (Not like m4 which has to wait for motion controller development by third parties which can be sporadic and patchy)

Really I'd like the cncdrive uc300eth and uc400eth motion controllers to update their mach4 plugins for spindle sync and I'd be sorted..... (I use them for mill and plasma with uccnc, but they have no short term plans for rotary axis or turn development)
Rob

Albert Einstein ― “If you can't explain it to a six year old, you don't understand it yourself.”
Re: Mach4 lathe / turning general state of development question
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2018, 03:04:13 AM »
Hi,

Quote
Really I'd like the cncdrive uc300eth and uc400eth motion controllers to update their mach4 plugins for spindle sync
CNCDrive have had a Mach4 plugin for about a year. All reports are that its gone really smoothly and CNCDrive are to congratulated on
a trouble free introduction to the market.

They don't have much in the way of realtime controller support, lathe threading for instance.

Warp9 and the SmoothStepper is better placed.....backlash comp has been added over the last month or two and much of the underlying code
for lathe threading is already in hand. My understanding is that they elected to have encoder support rather than plain index support and also
PID control of the spindle. These very nice extras have delayed lathe threading support by several months.

Warp9 has a reputation for moving glacially on developing new features and have no doubt lost customers as a result. I for one could wish for warp one,
or even warp half speed!

PMDX have lathe threading well in hand.

Vital Systems Hicon is the pick of the bunch, lathe threading, THC etc. I guess the income generated from high value sales paves the way for feature development.

Craig
My wife left with my best friend...
     and I miss him!
Re: Mach4 lathe / turning general state of development question
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2018, 09:37:37 AM »
We've got the HiCON on 2 lathes right now.   Motion is excellent and threading works great.   It is encoder threading but it is pretty flawless.
Chad Byrd
Re: Mach4 lathe / turning general state of development question
« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2018, 10:04:49 AM »
The HICON is a very nice board, and it always seems to be ahead of everyone else on development..... but it does come at a price premium that is not quite in the hobby market range (but I probably could have bought two by now by the number of motion controllers I've now got / had to hand .... buy cheap.... buy twice.... )

Also with the Hicon you pay for the extras to be enabled (which I guess is fair given they have additional development cost that is borne by the users of such features (THC for example).

PMDX is also well supported and I've come close a couple of times to buying one of their boards but my main application until now was plasma + THC (I also fell out with USB when I got a USBSS and it did not like noise {+ ground loops}, where as Ethernet just is so much more noise resistant (even with a blowback start plasma.

Do you use the Mach4 Turn wizards much??   {that is kind of the draw for me back to mach4}
Rob

Albert Einstein ― “If you can't explain it to a six year old, you don't understand it yourself.”
Re: Mach4 lathe / turning general state of development question
« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2018, 12:28:23 PM »
Rob,
With Mach3 I made a bunch of conversational buttons.  Lol. With Mach4 I asked our lathe department lead to let me know what he thought about them.   He loves them. It blows what I made out of the water.   On some of our longer products, he uses the wizard vs writing the program with our version of "post processor".
Chad Byrd
Re: Mach4 lathe / turning general state of development question
« Reply #9 on: July 30, 2018, 11:54:42 AM »
With regards to the m4 lathe wizards, there are several bugs. My understanding is that these were developed by Mach Motion and will not be updated.  Many work fine but use with caution.

HTH

RT