1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. PLEASE: Read the FORUM RULES BEFORE registering!

    Dismiss Notice

Tormach Pathpilot

Discussion in 'TORMACH CNC' started by 09kevin, Apr 20, 2015.

  1. 09kevin

    09kevin United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

    Likes Received:
    107
    Trophy Points:
    43
    City:
    Maple Valley
    State:
    Washington

    -Return to Top-

    Hello fellow Tormach owners,

    I am upgrading from MACH3 to the new Pathpilot operating system and was wondering if any of you plan to upgrade or already have done so? I should receive my shipment from Tormach this Friday and hopefully will install over the weekend. I thought we could pass along any tips or other handy things we find with Pathpilot.


    Kevin
     
  2. 09kevin

    09kevin United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

    Likes Received:
    107
    Trophy Points:
    43
    City:
    Maple Valley
    State:
    Washington

    -Return to Top-

    The Pathpilot install was painless and went just like the instructions from Tormach said it would.


    There are some really nice features with Pathpilot, here are my favorite so far.


    1. Feed hold stops motion as soon as it’s activated.

    2. Soft limits are set as soon as you reference the machine so no more hitting the limit switch and having to reference the machine and rechecking X,Y and Z zero.

    3. When you post a program Pathpilot will let you know if the cutter path goes beyond the machine limits (over travel)

    4. DTG, Distance To Go readout lets you know how much farther an axis is going to travel before the next block of information.





    Kevin

    002.JPG 004.JPG 008.JPG
     
  3. mike sr

    mike sr United States Iron Registered Member

    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    3
    City:
    Hazelwood
    State:
    Missouri

    -Return to Top-

    Pathpilot here has been a Godsend here, flawless from the beginning! As stated above, its well worth the change.......

    One thing I have noticed is that the feedrate isnt constant, on a specific curve it appeared to stop three times while machining the curve, usually this will leave a mark in the finish but I didnt notice any marks? Maybe there is a setting for this I dont know??
    I really like it as it can be trusted to run while I do other things in the shop.
    There are still a few rough edges but I think over time those will be worked out.

    I am new to this forum, so hope I posted correctly.
     
  4. seatlanta

    seatlanta H-M Supporter - Premium Content H-M Supporter-Premium

    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    1
    City:
    Atlanta
    State:
    Georgia

    -Return to Top-

    I've always used Mach 3, but decided to make the change to Pathpilot. I went for the new Tormach computer (controller) with software just so I'd get a seamless transition between operating systems.

    So far, it's been great, although Linus (Unix) is still a mystery to me. I had to give Tormach a call to find out how to transfer gcode files from my inside-the-house computer (with Fusion 360) to my shop computer. Not difficult—just different from Windows. It has a nice, clean interface that I like, and the conversational modes work better than those of Mach 3.

    James (seatlanta)
     
  5. cjtoombs

    cjtoombs United States Active User Active Member

    Likes Received:
    95
    Trophy Points:
    48
    City:
    Ridgecrest
    State:
    California

    -Return to Top-

    I will likely stay with Mach 3 untill I can no longer use it. At that point I will have to decide whether to go with Mach 4 or Pathpilot. The main thing I don't like about Pathpilot is that it requires a specific computer, which you have to purchase from Tormach. The only trouble that I have had with my machine has been the computer. Having to go to Tormach for computer support when something breaks on it instead of ordering a (cheap) part or computer from one of the many available vendors is a sticking point for me.
     
  6. GLCarlson

    GLCarlson United States Active User Active Member

    Likes Received:
    62
    Trophy Points:
    28
    City:
    Knoxville
    State:
    Tennessee

    -Return to Top-

    "I will likely stay with Mach 3 untill I can no longer use it. At that point I will have to decide whether to go with Mach 4 or Pathpilot. The main thing I don't like about Pathpilot is that it requires a specific computer, which you have to purchase from Tormach. The only trouble that I have had with my machine has been the computer. Having to go to Tormach for computer support when something breaks on it instead of ordering a (cheap) part or computer from one of the many available vendors is a sticking point for me."

    PathPilot has been installed successfully on computers not supplied by Tormach. Tormach was, early on, restricting support for PP to users with a Tormach controller, and may still be doing that (sensible, as an install on an unknown machine is difficult if not impossible to support). That aside, one can order the distribution disk and install on anything that will run LinuxCNC.
     
    cjtoombs likes this.
  7. rtp_burnsville

    rtp_burnsville United States Iron Registered Member

    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    3
    City:
    Savage
    State:
    Minnesota

    -Return to Top-

    I have been using PathPilot on a non-Tormach computer since it was introduced and all is working as expected. I initially tried to install on a very old mini, IBM ThinkCenter and ran into issues getting the I/O card to play nice with the interrupts / video system. I then tried a basic ASUS motherboard in a DIY chassis and all has been working great for several years.

    Total cost about $100 for the I/O card and software, and a obsolete PC for free.

    Robert
     
    cjtoombs likes this.
  8. mike sr

    mike sr United States Iron Registered Member

    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    3
    City:
    Hazelwood
    State:
    Missouri

    -Return to Top-

    Edit: I have since remidied the problem, turns out it was in my CAM software, selecting arcs instead of line segments, works perfect now, Sprutcam 7.
    Old post but may be useful to someone.
     
  9. gradient

    gradient United States Gradient Registered Member

    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    1
    Location:
    Villanova University
    City:
    Villanova
    State:
    Pennsylvania

    -Return to Top-

    I have to check this out again but one glitch I ran into lately with Pathpilot is that I accidently entered the offset data for a tool into the wrong tool number position. When Pathpilot used that tool number it got a zero length for the tool since that slot was never set up with a tool. It happily went with a zero length tool and crashed the spindle into my work piece just before I was able to hit the emergency stop. I plan to follow up with Tormach about this potential problem. They are very responsive. I freely admit it was my fault for programming the wrong tool number but IMHO it should not allow a zero length tool (other than the spindle) when running a program.
     
  10. rowbare

    rowbare Canada Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

    Likes Received:
    18
    Trophy Points:
    18
    City:
    Ottawa
    State:
    Ontario

    -Return to Top-

    A zero (or negative) tool length offset can be valid if your reference is other than the spindle nose. This isn't uncommon so I wouldn't expect them to change anything.

    There a discussion about best practices for tool offsets on the PathPilot forum on CNC Zone recently. One person mentioned that he initializes all of his tool offsets to 11.111 that way if he forgets to set up the tool all that happens is that the mill head goes up...

    You can write a g-code file to fill in the table. The P value is the tool number.

    eg: (credit kstrauss from the above mentioned thread)
    G10 L1 P96 Z11.1111
    G10 L1 P97 Z11.1111

    bob
     

Share This Page