Plasma GUI?

13 Sep 2017 00:56 #98906 by rodw
rodw replied the topic: Plasma GUI?
You may be overthinking it. There is probably only minor modifications required to your existing postprocessor so I'd investigate that as my preferred option.

In sheetcam, the kerf width is defined for each given material and plate thickness (eg. for 2mm Mild Steel) so it knows what offset to apply. Basically all of the key cutting parameters are contained within the material definition (pierce height, cut height, pierce delay etc..)
Sheetcam also supports plasma drilling operations.

I'm still learning about this myself this morning but it may be possible to send RS485 commands to the plasma cutter via the Mesa 7i76e serial interface with the required firmware and software config (eg set Hypertherm current and air pressure etc.)
13 Sep 2017 12:43 #98919 by scubawarm
scubawarm replied the topic: Plasma GUI?
But you see this is reversed from a big boy industrial control and nesting software. At least from my experience.

The CAM programmer should only be concerned with the selected amps and standard feed rate for that material type, grade and thickness. Each has a code to send to the control for the offsets.

The control uses that code to search its database for the required parameters. If the parameters are off the operator can adjust them for that run (material variences etc) and even future runs in the control if just wrong. Also keeping in mind as consumables age things change...

Neither CAM programmer nor operator are concerned with the pierce height, gas flows etc. The control manufacture has that all in the control and optimized the the material and thickness.

I realize this is a different sandbox, and most likely I will learn it can be done both ways. Just pointing out how in my experience it has been done before the latest industrial controllers.

A point worth making is.... With all the true hole technology and beveled cuts etc... The control/torch manufactures are requiring you to also use their CAM nesting software... Only way they can control things enough to get desired results. Which I guess is the same as what we are trying to do. ;)
13 Sep 2017 13:27 #98921 by rodw
rodw replied the topic: Plasma GUI?
Very similar I think. Here is a sheetcam tool definition for 2mm mild steel.

Pressure and amps are missing but I've disabled the RS485 option in my post processor which is probably why they are not showing.
So you apply this toolset to your job (nest) and it knows everything about how to cut 2mm mild steel. You generate the gcode with a mouse click and the gcode sets all the parameters. As you say the operator should know nothing.

I don't think it would be hard to maintain a database of these settings and have Linuxcnc retrieve the correct record and set it up the same way. It would be the python language processing this and it makes file handling very trivial. In fact, it looks like there might even be a python database library so you could maintain indexed data files and use a separate python program to manage your database.

So how do you select the material you are cutting? on the console or in gcode?
14 Sep 2017 15:30 - 14 Sep 2017 15:35 #98951 by scubawarm
scubawarm replied the topic: Plasma GUI?
OK finally got my laptop with touch screen to have a dual boot.

Built a 4.9.4 RT Mint 18.1 32bit. (tried others but nothing but problems - almost killed me to put on 32 bit though LOL)
Built dgarr/external_offsets LinuxCNC dev branch.

Trying to learn what HAL is all about.

One thing I noticed is the Plasma gmoccapy seems much more broken then the base package, can't seem to home, move around, etc. etc. I found a really good man/html on it, but for the life of me can't find it again. LOL information overload.
EDIT right G search found it for me again.

Is that yours? Or you have one you have fixed up?

As to the material size question. That is being done in the nesting software, currently only passed to controller via comments, as it only has a roller at this point.
Last Edit: 14 Sep 2017 15:35 by scubawarm. Reason: Found docs
14 Sep 2017 20:49 #98972 by rodw
rodw replied the topic: Plasma GUI?
I just tried the gmoccappy plasma sim and it works for me
Start sim,
press estop top right
press power on below it
press home select bottom right
press home all
all DRO's go green

This is what I am using for a GUI but pretty heavilly modified
Written by MArius who is using it on a Hypertherm 260

I'm off line for the next 3 days travelling 600 km for a wedding....
14 Sep 2017 20:56 #98973 by rodw
rodw replied the topic: Plasma GUI?
Forgot. If you are running the external offset branch, drill down to sim/axis/external offsets
and run hpid or hpid_mm (which is the metric version)
This branch has changed in the last few days. Dewey implemented a suggestion of mine so I am behind you I think as I have not recompiled
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