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Author Topic: Lathe controls  (Read 11384 times)

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Offline TT350

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Lathe controls
« on: October 20, 2007, 08:49:44 PM »
My question to you is I would like to convert my lathe

to cnc.

 

I’ve been talking to another Tormach customer that has

been playing with cnc routers and such for years and we

come up with an idea that I would like your opinion on.

 

We have been kicking around the idea of putting my lathe close enough to my

Tormach so we could put some amphenol plugs on 2 of the axes motor control

wires so that I could unplug the Tormach and plug up the lathe axes to the

Tormach cabinet and use your Mach lathe software to run my lathe.

 

I could have a cnc lathe and save a lot of $.

If this is would work I mite even put a 3 phase

motor on my lathe and let Mach control the

lathe spindle speed as well.

 

Thanks for your time

Chris           

Offline Chaoticone

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Re: Lathe controls
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2007, 09:19:08 PM »
I don't know if there is a limit to the number of profiles you can have in Mach, but you can certainly have two.  ;) If you wanted to run the lathe, change the connections and open your lathe profile. I don't know if Tormach has any propritary settings or configurations. If they do, might put a kink in things.

Brett
;D If you could see the things I have in my head, you would be laughing too. ;D

My guard dog is not what you need to worry about!

Offline TT350

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Re: Lathe controls
« Reply #2 on: October 20, 2007, 09:25:57 PM »
If it can be done it would make it simple to setup and very
cost effective.

If spindle encoder output if fed back to the PC and no threw the
the circuit boards in the cabnet I'll be set!

Offline Hood

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Re: Lathe controls
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2007, 04:03:19 AM »
You will have all sorts of wring to unplug/plug such as limits, motors, index etc etc. It could be done but to be honest it might not be the best way. You are going to need motors anyway so the extra cost of a breakout board and two axis drives would be money well spent in my opinion. For steppers Geckos seem to work well but there are others out there altough I would be carefull what you opt for.
 If you go this route then it would just be a case of setting up Mach turn and swapping the parallel port cable over, you could probably even get a two port switchover to save having to unplug it all the time.
Hood

Offline Chaoticone

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Re: Lathe controls
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2007, 06:41:55 AM »
Quote
It could be done but to be honest it might not be the best way.

I agree with Hood.

Brett
;D If you could see the things I have in my head, you would be laughing too. ;D

My guard dog is not what you need to worry about!

Offline TT350

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Re: Lathe controls
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2007, 09:37:53 AM »
I'm really don't know anything about all the other stuff that goes with the system.

I know what a VFD is, I've put one on a three phase motor and programed it before
but all the other things that it takes "brake out boards drives and power supplies"
I have read people posts but it's not my cup of tea.
If some one could put together a recipe of parts it would make it easer.

All that stuff is in the Tormach cabinet.

After loading the Mach lathe program why can’t
it use the same printer port?

Why can’t one just open Mach lathe after the motor tuning setup for the lathe and unplug the
and plug in assigned axes and limit’s switch’s?

My be I’m not seeing the hole pitcher here, but it seam’s
to me that the electronics in the cabinet is sending commands to a motor,
what would it care if it’s a lathe or a mill?

Now I do know that Tormach comes with it’s own version of Mach, maybe it won’t run on a regular
version?

If there was a place where I could go and get everything
at from company and build a system that would make it
easer.

Saving money is only a small part of this is.
All that stuff in that cabinet really intimidates me. 

I just don’t know what to buy.

Chris   

Offline Hood

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Re: Lathe controls
« Reply #6 on: October 21, 2007, 12:20:18 PM »
First off dont be intimidated, its really quite easy once you get your teeth into it.
 Well you could do as you say and maybe the Tormach makes things simple by having plugs for everything that is outside the cabinet such as limits, index, speed control etc. If it does then you can set up your lathe to use these but I think it might be a pain to do it that way. If it doesnt use plugs for everything then it will be a major pain as you will have to wire your lathes limits, index etc to the Tormach breakout every time you want to use it and hen swap everything back when you want to use the mill.

 You can use the same parallel port in the computer but if you have two distinct machines then you will have to connect the parallel port to one machine or the other. Please note this is if you are not going to try and use the same drives etc.
 If you do use the Tormachs drives etc you  may run into problems unless the motors are the same on mill and lathe. The drives need to be set to the current of the motors with a resistor and also there is a pot on the drives for adjusting resonance. So if the motors are not exactly the same you may hit problems and even if they are the tuning pot may need to be set different from motor to motor.

  There are a few places that you can buy complete control hardware from but its more expensive that way. For a basic system you will need a power supply, breakout board, stepper motors, stepper drives and limit switches. You can easily build a power supply as they dont have to be regulated so all you need is a suitable transformer a suitable capacitor and a rectifier.

If you decide to go down the self build route you will get all the help you need from the guys on this forum.

The version Of Mach in the Tormach shouldnt really be a problem as I would think it only varies in screensets and maybe a few macros but as long as you can open MachTurn from your Tormach computer then you can set it up how you like.


Hood

Offline TT350

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Re: Lathe controls
« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2007, 02:04:33 PM »
I plane on putting the same motors and limit switches on the lathe that the Tormach uses.
I will put Amphenol plugs in the cabinet so all I have to do is unplug the mill motors
and switch's plug up the lathe motors and switch's.
This way all the stuff in the cabinet matches.
Amphenol makes plugs big enough to put all the necessary
wires all in one big plug.   

I really appreciate ever ones help.
I know I my seam a little hard headed
but if I build a new control system
and I basically will end up with 2 control
cabinets and 2 PC setups.

I’m a one man shop and can only run one at
a time. Now as I get better I may need 2 separate
systems.   

Thanks for all your input

Chris

Offline Hood

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Re: Lathe controls
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2007, 02:11:56 PM »
Not hard headed at all :)
You wouldnt need 2 PC setups just two hardware setups, the one PC could control both machines.
 From your description though it seems that maybe it is possible tyo do as you are wanting, ie all external harware is connected via plugs. If this is the case then my only worries would be the motor resonance adjusting but really that shouldnt pose too much of a problem. The spindle control might be an issue depending on how the Tormach and your Lathes spindle will be connected but again as long as you are careful with the settings there shouldnt be a problem, just have to make sure you get it right as you dont want the mills spindle starting by accident.

I am a one man shop also but I hope to be able to run both machines at the same time and be away doing another job :D

Hood

Offline TT350

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Re: Lathe controls
« Reply #9 on: October 21, 2007, 05:22:55 PM »
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BnKmLGP6lIg

I would like one of these as well.
It looks like it was made by the owner.
I was chasing forum threads on one of these and there
was talk of there being some detailed plans for one,
but so far I haven't been able to find them.