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[CNC] CNC from sketch to part the way I do it

Discussion in 'CNC IN THE HOME SHOP' started by jumps4, Dec 17, 2013.

  1. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Hi Steve. Been moving right along with my conversion. Waiting on a breakout board and a UC-100 so I can finish the control wiring. Got Mach 3 and D2nc loaded yesterday. I watched your video on how to import an eMachines drawing into D2nc. It was very helpful in getting me started. However I'm having a problem with the imported eMachines drawing that I can't figure out. I can import it with no problems but it loads multiple views of the part in D2nc as one drawing, e.g. top view, side views, end views, etc. I went back and looked at the .ems drawing but couldn't find anything obviously wrong. Searching on Help in eMachines was a bust as was the D2nc Help page. Tried attaching the ems and dxf files but Xenforo wouldn't upload these file types. I'm going to make another drawing and see how that works out but I'd like to know what I did wrong so I won't make the same mistake again.

    My wife just walked through the door with today's mail. Got the BoB and UC-100! Now I'm revved up to get my machine running.

    Thanks in advance for your help and insight into CNC.

    Tom S
     
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  2. jumps4

    jumps4 Global Moderator Staff Member Active Member

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    Hi Tom
    here is how you fix it...
    1. open any drawing in Emachineshop
    2. click on export
    3. on the right side of the box that opens, at the top it says "include" uncheck every available selection.
    now it will only export what you see on your screen.
    go ahead and export the file just to make sure it saves your settings.
    Steve

    P.S. Tom
    If your computer has a parallel port I would set up the entire machine and get it running before installing the uc100. that way if your having any problems it is one less thing that can be causing it.
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2015
  3. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    This cured the problem. Thanks.

    I'm using a laptop with Windows 7 so no computer parallel port. I downloaded and installed your ZX45Mill profile that you included in a post a while back. Seems to be working OK.

    Today I'll be wiring the breakout board to the controllers and tie in the limit switches.

    Thanks again for your help.


    Tom S
     
  4. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I'm having difficulty with Mach 3 tool path simulation. I watched your video several times on how to use D2nc to select shapes and generate G code. I select the origin point as bottom left but then go through the remaining steps to select shapes and generate G code. This is simple and G code is generated. The issue is the tool doesn't start at bottom left. It starts a significant distance from 0,0. Not sure if it's me not understanding the program or Mach 3 and D2nc aren't communicating properly. Is there a calibration setting I'm missing? I double checked the drawing to make sure there are no stray lines or points. I'll check again but I don't think this is the problem.

    Thanks in advance for helping me and others get over these hurdles.

    Tom S
     
  5. jumps4

    jumps4 Global Moderator Staff Member Active Member

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    try zeroing the 3 axis in mach3 before bringing in the g-code
    or zero the axis and then hit the regen button by the tool path display.
    Steve
     
  6. Bill C.

    Bill C. United States Active User Active Member

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    You CNC machinist/programmers are amazing. I really mean that. I wanted to learn back in the day, about 1980-81, but my class of toolmakers didn't qualify for the class at GE. The next class did. How you take a drawing and convert it into a series of instructions that produce a part or group of parts is beyond me. One shop I worked in bought a CNC machine center for precision production. A older gentleman was hired to program this machine. Terry was a pattern maker, tool maker and CNC programer. I worked in another shop where the operator knew more about adjust the program to account for cutter wear than I did.

    I felt intimated by the machine I guess. I like to be in control if you know what I mean. I took computer programing in collage in the 1970's. CAD came out after I graduated. I got to play with it when I visited my school.

    Make those chips fly and have a nice weekend
     
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  7. Billh50

    Billh50 Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Many years ago when I worked as a moldmaker I started to learn NC programming. That's back in the day when a tape full of holes told the machine what to do. Anyway the main, and only program writer got t'd off because the owner was letting me learn and he threatened to quit. Well that ended my chance for that. But because of that I never learned programming but can enter adjustments when needed. I figured why try to learn if someone is always going to stop me. But it did give me the attitude to be willing to teach what I do know. I was never afraid of someone taking my job. If they were becoming better than I am then they deserve it.
     
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  8. Bill C.

    Bill C. United States Active User Active Member

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    You and I must be of the same generation. I remember seeing photos of the NC tape drives. I have an old teletype machine with a paper punch and reader unit. Bought it at a HAM feast. We have seen many changes and improvements since those days.

    Thanks for sharing.
     
  9. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Did both and still having trouble. My drawing is 5" square by 1/2" thick with a 2" centered thru hole and a 4" diameter by .1" deep counterbore. I open the DXF file in D2nc and select Next". I then select Bottom Left then select Offset. To make it simple I select the 2" thru hole, then In/Right. I type in .5 for the tool diameter then select Offset. I go to Path and select Contour. I click on Local Shape then select None. I then click on the 2" diameter thru hole and click on Move Current Selection to Local Shape. I enter .51 in the Full Depth box and .050 in the Step box. I change the Speed to 3000 and the Feed to 100 then select Add and Close. On the next screen I select Contour then Generate G-Code & Exit. In Mach 3 the axis are all 0.000. If I click on the part in Table Display and rotate it is a cube not a 1/2" thick object. The tool is now on center but tool simulation shows it cutting a 1/2" diameter hole. Not sure what strep I'm missing or doing incorrect, or there is an issue with D2nc and/or Mach 3. This is becoming frustrating.

    Tom S
     
  10. jumps4

    jumps4 Global Moderator Staff Member Active Member

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    I sent you a pm tom with my phone number
    it's hard to explain in text here
    Steve
     
  11. jumps4

    jumps4 Global Moderator Staff Member Active Member

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    in the mach3 your using for test are you selecting the zx45 xml file i sent you to start it?
    if not mach3 may be in metric mode? also check settings in d2nc and make sure it is in inch and not metric mode.
    it is not going to show a picture of your part it shows the center line of the cutter size you picked
    so if the hole is 2" and you chose a .5 diameter cutter and do inside offset, the display should now show a circle that is 1.5"
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2015
  12. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Yes, I downloaded your xml file and installed it in my Mach 3 folder. I also checked to make sure both Mach 3 and D2nc were in "inch" mode, which they are. I'm running a second installation of Mach 3 and D2nc on a spare laptop running Windows 8.1. My primary laptop is running Windows 7. Could it be a Windows 8.1 issue? Been doing all this practicing using the laptop with windows 8.1.

    Tom S
     
  13. jumps4

    jumps4 Global Moderator Staff Member Active Member

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    yes it could be the problem. d2nc will not work on "my" win7 64bit pc but it does work on my win7 32 bit,
    it works on my vista 64bit and my xp pc's
    I don't have win8.1 but it could be suspect. the problems i have with win7 64bit are display and mouse selection issues
    Steve
     
  14. jumps4

    jumps4 Global Moderator Staff Member Active Member

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    open your g-code file in notepad and then save it as a txt file instead of a tap extension
    then upload it here and I'll check it on my pc
    Steve
     
  15. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Here's the file.
     

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  16. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    So far the mouse and display seem to work OK on both of my laptops. I haven't used the Win 7 laptop much yet for Mach 3 or D2nc but will give it a thorough test drive when I get home later this week.

    Tom S
     
  17. jumps4

    jumps4 Global Moderator Staff Member Active Member

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    open it in mach3, click display mode then re-click regen toolpath
    Steve
     
  18. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I have some time now. Will call you in a few minutes.
     
  19. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Steve and I had a great conversation today. He graciously walked me through the issues I was having with D2nc. Turned out it wasn't a software problem but a "hard head" problem. Once he reprogrammed my thought process everything fell into place.

    Thanks Steve!!!

    Tom S
     
  20. jumps4

    jumps4 Global Moderator Staff Member Active Member

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    Your welcome Tom
     
  21. jumps4

    jumps4 Global Moderator Staff Member Active Member

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    This is the photos and video of the completed RC helicopter tail rotor part
    since this part was the first try I kept the feeds and speed lower, I could triple the
    speed if I edited the software and increased speeds. the part came out really nice.
    Thanks for viewing
    Steve


    DSCF1855.JPG DSCF1857.JPG DSCF1858.JPG DSCF1859.JPG DSCF1860.JPG DSCF1861.JPG DSCF1862.JPG DSCF1863.JPG DSCF1864.JPG DSCF1868.JPG DSCF1869.JPG DSCF1870.JPG DSCF1871.JPG DSCF1872.JPG
     
  22. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I posted this in the Precision Mathews section but thought it would be best to also post it here for more exposure. Here's what I posted earlier today.

    After reloading the D2NC software I'm still having the same problem. What's interesting is I have a duplicate copy of D2NC loaded on my other laptop and loading the same .dxf file it works fine. This leads me to believe the process I'm using is correct.

    Here's what I'm doing. I'm opening D2NC from within Mach 3 and selecting my .dxf file. I select the origin then click the Offset button. I'm doing an internal hole so I click on the circle in the drawing section, select In/Right, input the tool diameter and click Offset. So far good. Next I click on the Path button, again select the circle in the drawing section, and click Contour. The Contour screen appears and I select Local Shape and then None. I select the circle in the drawing section then press the Move Current Selection to Local Shape button. When I do this the Close, Add Only and Add and Close buttons at the bottom of the screen disappear. I've moved the cursor around to see if the function is still available. No luck. My questions are:

    Is it a D2NC issue?

    Is it a Mach 3 issue?

    Is it me?

    I'd like to get my machine running but these hardware and software problems are keeping me from doing so.

    Tom S
     
  23. jumps4

    jumps4 Global Moderator Staff Member Active Member

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    It is probably D2nc. I cannot get it to work right on of my windows 7 64 bit computers but it runs fine on a laptop with windows 7 32 bit.
    windows just came out with "windows virtual pc" and "Windows Xp mode" late last year and I have just installed it on my win 7 64 bit machine just this week.
    I have not tested it yet but it says it will run any software that will run in windows Xp.
    I'll try to test it soon and let you know the results.
    also make sure you are running it as Administrator
    Graham Hollis the author of D2nc Tried to help me get it working but it never did on one of my pc's running win7 64 bit, he thought it may be a graphics controller issue but I gave up and used a different Pc.
    Steve
     
  24. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I've got Graham in the loop on this too. He thinks it might be a screen resolution issue but we're still working on trying to determine the cause. For info the laptop that runs D2NC successfully is a Windows 8.1 machine.

    I'm not sure if I'm running as an Administrator. I'm headed to the shop in a couple of hours and check it out.

    Thanks for your input. I'm interested to hear how the "Windows virtual pc" and Windows Xp mode" work out for you.

    Tom S.
     
  25. TomS

    TomS Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Just solved the D2NC problem. It was a screen resolution problem. Changed the text size to medium from large and dropped the resolution one setting below max. Now I can play with Mach 3!

    Tom S
     
  26. Ed of all trades

    Ed of all trades Active Member Active Member

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    Thanks Steve, I can't even guess the time you are putting into this, but thank you for all of it. I have been planning to get a LMS mini mill and install a DRO and learn to use it. In watching your videos I have realized that CNC would work much better for me. My wife and I are the only caretaker for her autistic brother and I must spend much of my time in the house. I could be working on the "drawings" in the house while I am watching him. Thank you so much, I hope to keep my mind in working condition so no one has to watch me. Hope to be able to get the mill sometime this summer and start hooking up the CNC soon after. Ed
     
  27. fluvannabear

    fluvannabear United States Iron Registered Member

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    Hi Steve:
    Just ran across this thread. Super information. Thank you very much for all the videos, have subscribed, and other bits of info. Still tweaking my G0484 conversion but getting closer to real chips. Tried cutting a "plastic" cutting board that I got at Sams Club and with 3/16" 4-flute end mill it worked pretty good. Need to get the circles a bit rounder and then we are off to the races. Take care.
    Burt
     

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