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Author Topic: Master Tool 1 or Probe for Tool 1 in Tool Table  (Read 1271 times)

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Master Tool 1 or Probe for Tool 1 in Tool Table
« on: August 25, 2018, 07:49:23 AM »
I'm confused about the use of Tool#1 in the Tool Table.  Once I Calibrate my 3D Probe, the length offset is placed into Tool#1 in the Tool Table.  So, do I use this length offset for my master tool when setting up my different tools for my project, or can I put this tool length for my Probe into a different Tool # in the table?  I tried entering the Tool # into the Current Tool window on the operation screen before doing the probe calibration, but that didn't do anything.  It still put the probe length into Tool #1 even though I put tool #31 into the Current tool display.  Should I have issued an M6 T31 into the MDI window prior to probe calibration to set the Current tool to #31?  Also, going forward, when I do probing with this probe, will I have to set the current tool to #31 before I set my work coordinates so that Mach4 knows the length of the probe, or is all that info saved in the .inf file after the probe calibration?

Offline Graham Waterworth

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Re: Master Tool 1 or Probe for Tool 1 in Tool Table
« Reply #1 on: August 25, 2018, 04:40:54 PM »
In most cases the probe will be your master tool as this is the tool you will set your fixture offsets with.

Are you using just a spindle probe or do you have a tool setter too?


It depends how you have your machine set but the other tool lengths can be relative to the master tool (probe) or if you are working from the spindle end face every tool offset including the master tool (probe) has the length from the spindle face to the end of the working face of the tool.  I say working face because the tool tip is not always on the end of the tool e.g. back spot facing bar.

Both methods have advantages/disadvantages most hobby users use master tool and relative tool offsets, industrial use spindle end and tool lengths.

In most cases you can use any tool number as long as its got the right tool length in the offset.  Normally zero for relative way and the tool/probe trigger length for spindle end way.

« Last Edit: August 25, 2018, 04:49:07 PM by Graham Waterworth »
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Re: Master Tool 1 or Probe for Tool 1 in Tool Table
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2018, 06:29:25 PM »
Hi Graham, Thank you for sharing your expertise.  I'm still learning, and very grateful for your help.  I have a 3d spindle probe that I use as my G31 probe.  I have a small tool setter that I use as my G31.1 probe for setting my tool offsets that is .76" high.  So that I am understanding you, your reference to the "spindle end face", I believe that is the spindle gage line.  When I did the probe Calibration routines, tool #1 shows a tool length that was put there following the Calibrate Z as the final probe calibration process.  My tool gage setter, which is nothing more than a round touch-off with an alligator lead I attach to the tool.  This touch-off plate is .76" high which is what I used as the guage block height when I set each tool using the G31.1 probe signal.  One thing that I didn't do when setting the Calibrate Z, I didn't use the .76 as an offset for the probe.  However, when setting the default tool, I left the default tool Z setting at height offset at 0 and then used the .76" gage block height offset while setting each tool.  Did I do this correctly?  I'm sorry, I hope I'm making sense in my questions.  I'm trying to reconcile all these offsets in my mind, and I think I almost have them figured out.  At least I hope I am.  Again, thank you for your help.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2018, 06:40:12 PM by HeliOfAGuy »
Re: Master Tool 1 or Probe for Tool 1 in Tool Table
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2018, 06:54:52 PM »
So, Graham, you mentioned "It depends how you have your machine set", I believe I want to use the relative tool offset from Tool#1 since I have a collett setup will be changing my tools manually.  I am working on an M6 macro that sets the tool length that Mach4 support kindly provided in a recent YouTube video.  With manual tool changes into a collett, I can't guarantee that the same tool will be installed the exact same depth into the collett, and so I figured with this macro, I will get an exact offset every time.  Unfortunately, all my tool offsets are off, and it winds up cutting air.  Tool#1 still has the offset value in the tool table that was put there following the Probe calibration routines.  According to the docs, Tool#1 must have a tool offset of zero to use a relative tool offset.  So, I'm stuck in this conundrum where, the Probe calibration puts that tool offset there after the calibration routines.  Do I now zero that out and set Tool#1 for tool offsets but will that undo the probe calibration routine when I do that?  I can really use your help with this.