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Author Topic: Invisible Mach-3  (Read 2278 times)

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Invisible Mach-3
« on: September 10, 2008, 11:11:40 PM »
Hi all,

I am new to all this, so I may be dealing with something which is old hat to the regulars - please be patient!

I hope to use Mach 3 to control an existing engraver, which I'm sure it can do. The jobs are all similar, and there will be about 20 standard components, each needing one line of text. I want the operator to load the component into a fixture, select the component type, and then input the line of text. They then press the GO button (in some form) and the job starts. No programming, no G codes, nothing like that bothering the operator. So all the generation of G codes and so on happens automatically.

The big question is - can this be done?

The second question is - can anyone give me a clue as to how?

Thanks in advance,

Keith  S. Angus

Offline jimpinder

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Re: Invisible Mach-3
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2008, 11:34:09 PM »
Yes - Easy peasey - BUT

someone will have to write the GCode.

There are several CAD/CAM programs on the market which will write these for you - I do not use them so I cannot advise.
There was a similar question on here a couple of weeks back if you look - he was engraving wooden signs, and had quite a collection. He might advise you what he used. I can't remember the name.

As far as an operator goes, a monkey could do it after that. Fit in the workpiece, select a title and press the cycle start button, in fact you can write an even better program which would just list the lines, and you just click on the one you want and the machine would cut it.

Mach 3 has an interface with Visual Basic - a computer language, and you can write "scripts" in that to "customiise" your machine.
Not me driving the engine - I'm better looking.
Re: Invisible Mach-3
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2008, 11:52:53 PM »
here's a free engrave program I use to use . type in your font, and it writes the code,
and its free. I believe its all g1 lines, no g2 or g3, which means many short linear moves


Ed VanEss
Re: Invisible Mach-3
« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2008, 08:52:03 AM »
The project is to get better control of the engraver (the current programme is Vistools 6). From what you say I can run a standard machining programme, but with a variable which is input by the operator. At this stage it is enough to know it can be done - now I have to make a start on working out how. It should not be too hard to sort out the electrics, as the machine already contains stepper motor drivers & I have the data sheets, & we have a spare computer to use. The harder part for me is wading through the setup of Mach 3. Actually writing the G code is not too bad - I know how in principle, and others in the company run NC machines, so I will finally get some practical experience.

I shall search for the previous posts, and then probably be back with some more specific questions.

Thanks for the information

Keith  S. Angus