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Hello everyone
« on: November 01, 2008, 07:26:11 AM »
Hello all,
          Thank you for letting me join this knowledgeable site. I am a former cnc setter programmer who has also done fixture design as well as estimating and purchasing and I now make fishing floats for a living in the UK. I am building a machine that will grind the various shapes and sizes of float body from balsa dowel and also put the hole through the centre for the glass fibre stems. I can handle the machine building bit fine but am sure I will need help getting it to run from the Mach 3 software which will come with the router machine when I purchase it. At the moment I have got the spare PC to run it but need to build my balsa dowel holding  "4th axis" before I can finalise the required build dimensions of the modified router and place an order.

Regards - Neil.

Offline Hood

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Re: Hello everyone
« Reply #1 on: November 01, 2008, 07:31:35 AM »
Welcome Neil
 You can download and use the demo version of Mach which will let you get used to it. The demo has a few limitations but is generally usable and it is all that some people use, personally I feel the price is that good that even if I didnt need the extra features available in the licenced version I would still buy it but everyone to their own :)
Hood
Re: Hello everyone
« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2008, 07:38:03 AM »
Hello Hood,
                Thanks for the welcome. I have downloaded the trial version but have not had much of a play with it yet. Is it possible to write G code straight into the Mach3 as being a former programer it would be easy to create progams as I go along. Do you have to do anything to simulate running a program without an actual machine linked to the PC. - Neil.

Offline Hood

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Re: Hello everyone
« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2008, 08:26:43 AM »
You can type direct to the MDI line, you can use MDI and the teach file as well. You can use the wizards to produce code and also you can just write some code into a text file (best to change it to .tap extension) and then load that.
Yes you can simulate no problem. You will have to enable the axis you intend your code to use, there is no need to put in the correct port or pins at this stage. One other thing you will have to do is change the E-Stop active state, this is because with nothing connected Mach will think the E-Stop circuit has been broken and wont allow you to do anything. All of these are done from Config menu then Ports and Pins

Hood
Re: Hello everyone
« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2008, 12:47:55 PM »
Thanks Hood. I have now got the PC running a program but it does not run at anywhere near the programed feed rates and the rapid is snail pace. Have I missed something as I set it up as per the tutorial pages on Artsoft.

Offline Hood

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Re: Hello everyone
« Reply #5 on: November 01, 2008, 01:28:42 PM »
You will need to set the velocity in the Motor Tuning page for each axis you have enabled, sorry forgot to mention that :(
Mach looks at that and will not exceed it even if your code calls for more. One other thing you may need to do is set your native units to Metric or Imperial, think default is imperial.

Hood
Re: Hello everyone
« Reply #6 on: November 01, 2008, 01:52:25 PM »
Wey hey I sussed it. Needed a G21 at the start of program and seems ok now. Thanks for the help - Neil

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Re: Hello everyone
« Reply #7 on: November 01, 2008, 05:46:36 PM »
Neil
 when you come to set up Mach for real on a machine make sure you set it up in the units you will use most, for me that is Metric and more than likely will be for you as well. Setting the native units is done from the Config menu, obviously your code can have G20's in it for imperial programmes.
Hood
Re: Hello everyone
« Reply #8 on: November 01, 2008, 07:39:23 PM »
Will do Hood. I assume that cutter comp and a few other bits and pieces are turned off until the copy is validated. I will have three spindles attached below the natural z axis on my machine so the z will in effect become the y and vice versa. I will of course ensure that the machine knows which is which so I can use canned cycles etc in my new z axis. With having three spindles I will need three tool lengths but without any tool changes but I am sure I will figure a way around that one. Thanks - Neil.