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Author Topic: Converting Bridgeport Interact 1 Mk2 to Mach 4  (Read 636 times)

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Converting Bridgeport Interact 1 Mk2 to Mach 4
« on: July 14, 2019, 08:35:38 AM »
Hello All,

I have a bridgeport interact 1 mk2 on the way that is in pristine mechanical condition but the control starts doing strange things intermittently. So I have bought it with a view to change the entire control.

My plan was to do the following

- Fit new AC Servos and drives
- Fit small mitsubishi PLC for things like coolant feed and to control spindle speed via 0-10v feed to inverter (I have software for mitsubishi)
- Inverter for spindle motor instead of cone drive system
- Unsure on motion control yet but thinking along lines of Galil or another high quality option as this will be for my workshop to earn money from
-Mach 4 control running on Windows 10 (Pro to control updates) Laptop

I was thinking of using existing dc servos but figured better to replace all and saves modification to work with modern control such as encoders etc.

The way I plan is to build the whole backplate for panel, hook up motors etc and have everything running on the bench before I do the changeover.

How does this sound? Is  PLC over the top and could this be done with relays triggered from Galil?

I have done a fair amount of automation in the past but this more process control and not motion control so will be an exciting learning curve.

Any thoughts or guidance from those who have been there before would be very much appreciated.

I assume it would be good to run a build type thread once I get going.
Re: Converting Bridgeport Interact 1 Mk2 to Mach 4
« Reply #1 on: July 14, 2019, 01:21:43 PM »
sounds eminently practical.

I would recommend DMM or Delta (A2 series) servos, quality at very reasonable prices.
If you are just turning on a coolant pump then a PLC is not required. Mach4 has a PLC script built in
and a ladder logic module called PMC. With a motion controller with enough spare inputs and outputs
a hardware PLC is not required.

Gallil is superb quality but you are paying for a lot of capability that you don't need. A three axis Gallil will
set you back $2000. Gallil's strength is its superb feedback control functionality....which you aren't going to use.
An Ethernet SmoothStepper ($190) or a 57CNC ($150) or a UC300 ($150), even if you bought a flash breakout
board for $200, would still be vastly cheaper than Gallil. I myself have had Ethernet SmoothStepper for six years
and can attest to its build quality and reliability.

Mach has a PWM output that when paired with a breakout board with a filter to produce an analogue voltage
means you do not require a PLC to control a spindle.

I would save money on the Gallil and the PLC to give you budget for your servos and inverter. Who knows you
may save enough to be able to afford Delta A3 series servos?

My wife left with my best friend...
     and I miss him!
Re: Converting Bridgeport Interact 1 Mk2 to Mach 4
« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2019, 05:06:09 PM »
Thanks Craig,

That makes perfect sense and I knew the Gallil was pricey but didn’t realise it was to that extent.

I have looked at the smooth stepper board and sounds like it will do all I require.

Although this will be for work machining is a small part of what we do so doesn’t make sense to blow that kind of money for features or reliability that I don’t require.

Yes my external outputs will be just coolant and control spindle speed so sounds like I can do all that.

Thanks for the pointers, I will take a look over the next week and get something planned
Re: Converting Bridgeport Interact 1 Mk2 to Mach 4
« Reply #3 on: July 14, 2019, 06:51:04 PM »
at the current time all of the Mach4 ready controllers are good and well supported, I suspect you would be happy with any of them.

Lets say you went with an ESS, and paired that with an MB3 breakout board, about $400 the pair . Mach4 Hobby $200
(Industrial is a worthy option $1400). So around $600.

The real cost of the conversion is the servos and the VFD. Delta A3 servos and drive will likely be over $600 each.

My wife left with my best friend...
     and I miss him!