Retrofitting a 1986 Maho MH400E

22 Sep 2020 20:07 #183340 by BeagleBrainz
Have to totally agree with your assessment of some of the newer screens. Another thing that isn’t taken into account is on screen button size vs finger size of someone who has spent all their working life using their hands.
Another argument I see is that Linuxcnc user interfaces look dated. I don’t know if it’s just me but I spend more time with my eyes on the machine rather than the GUI.
As for your conversion, I really like the way you took advantage of the modularity of the control electrics, rather than a wholesale rebuild. If , heaven forbid, anything has a major gremlin a repair should be easier.
Mind tho my opinions are just those of a hobbyist my background is carpentry & roadwork labouring.
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22 Sep 2020 20:18 #183341 by rodw
Its interesting to hear your thoughts on Gmoccapy using it to control a mill which is what its intended for. Whilst I liked it at the beginning on my plasma machine, there are issues I don't like now. I use a 17" wide format (16:9) touch screen.
Home all requires 2 button presses to achieve. Its mandatory on a gantry machine.
Home buttons too far away from the power on switches. (diagonally opposite corners), should be close together as we have to always home when turning on the machine
File name display as icons makes it very hard to read longer file names. Files should be sorted in date order
Too many tabs, forever swapping between them to reach jogging, keyboard macros on MDI and the file run tab.

When you get your pendant going you will find you need to select the jog screen for it to be active.I got tired of this when you were on the other side of the table so I programmed a pendant button to select the jog mode/tab. But then when you have finished jogging, you need to reselect the run tab or MDI tab which requires a trip back to the console.

It is much nicer on a 4:3 monitor and often I don't bother with full screen mode.
So in summary, I'd like to see a Mk2 with support for 16:9 screens that uses the extra real estate to provide a single flat interface with more ergonomic button placement and better file name display with a custom touch enabled file name display in a single list with search and navigation buttons.

I have a Windows based touch screen NC controller for my press brake and its data entry is quite OK. The use of the onboard keyboard by gmocappy is very kludgy in my view.

Ooops, I ranted too!
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23 Sep 2020 08:28 - 23 Sep 2020 09:48 #183430 by RotarySMP
I guess if I have one mild criticism of open source culture, there is a bit of a tendency to keep throwing out the baby with the bath water and starting over from scratch especially with Gui. I never really understood what motivates people to start the ten thousand and first new GUI for linux. I realise you can just ignore them, but it gets confusing over time. Ubuntu was all the rage when I first tried LinuxCNC, a few years later, and it was Debian. Now Mint. Who cares about these things? They all do about the same thing, but none gets the sustained development to be awesome. I know as a non-programmer, I can't really add value to the conversation here though.

Norbert has done an amazing job of Gmoccapy, but like anything it would probably benefit from a wider circle of users and developers.

I guess that is a big thank you to the LinuxCNC core development group. You have sustained development long enough for this to be awesome.

Rod, thanks for your feedback on your Gmoccapy experience. It would have been easier to find a 16:9 monitor, but I avoided that because Gmoccapy is so well optimised for 4:3. When I see the supermarket staff use their touch screen monitors day in day out, they are obviously more robust and durable than we may give them credit for.

I guess you could add three buttons mapped to Jog/MDI/Run at the pendant. I am guess Norbert implemented the interface ignoring the pendant unless in the correct mode as s safety feature. I see that most industrial pendants have an additional interlock which you have to push to be able to operate them at all.

I am really tempted to start again on the pendant and do Peter (Talla83)'s one,

as that interfaces directly with the MESA hardware with just an ethernet cable. I have never soldered SMD boards before, but have a couple of his RS-422 Adapter to practice on.

Last edit: 23 Sep 2020 09:48 by RotarySMP.
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23 Sep 2020 08:45 #183433 by rodw
The move from Ubuntu to Debian was driven by open source licensing issues.
I think the move to mint was driven by a better user experience and the fact that pre-stretch preempt-rt if you had to compile the kernel to use a mesa card (like me), you might as well do it on Mint with better driver support and a nicer experience.

It would be nice if now the 2.8 release is over that the dev team could take Rob Murphy's work and release a Mint distro as they have given LCNC permission to do so.

BUt yes agree, its really an amazing project that has stood the test of time.

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13 Oct 2020 11:29 - 13 Oct 2020 11:45 #185967 by chris mcm
Further, thanks to this forum and especially Mark. The Maho 700c is now operational and I can use it. We have fitted an Easson DRO and managed to retain the Heidenhain X axis scale. It seems the Y and Z axis signal were not recognized by the Easson so we now have the standard Easson scales.
All the other features of the Maho work as before. The T.N.C has been isolated.
My Technician Brad has got to know the electrics of this Maho. At this point I am just happy to have the machine working as it is but it is likely we will carry on retrofit the same to Linux CNC.
I have another issue. The Horizontal spindle is leaking oil. I fear I have over filled it and flushed the grease out of the spindle. There is no sight glass or dip stick. Reading the manual I find only one reference. page 7.03-1 says after 2000 hours "Change the oil in the horizontal work spindle drive gear" 0.7 1. I presume this is .7 litres. I have not used the machine since over filling and tomorrow I will look at the daunting job of removing the spindle and repacking it with Kluber spindle grease. The recommended Kluber F 23 A. Is no longer available.
I am sure all this has been covered in the forum at some time. I have looked but the forum is huge!
Can I ask? Does the Kluber grease act as an oil seal in the spindle. The oil level must be very low to not flow through the bearings.
Any advise on lubrication or spindle removal would be helpful.
Thanks to every one who has helped me in the past, A great Forum!
Cheers Chris Auckland New Zealand
Last edit: 13 Oct 2020 11:45 by chris mcm. Reason: missed a word or three

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13 Oct 2020 18:20 #186009 by ThisOldTony
Re: leaking horizontal spindle. Did the same with an MH400. Turns out I did overfill it. (that, and it had a bit of a forward lean as it was half up on skates/shims). I didn't verify but am told the 400's use a labyrinth seal. Mine does have a sight glass, however.... and I overfilled it nonetheless. :)

Takes a while for oil to leak out w/o the spindle running. I let the excess drain into a catch pan. Took a couple of days, but fill level has stabilized (& I marked the sight glass).

Spindle runs fine, no leaks, consistent fill. I panicked for a while and even tore the motor off with the intention of rebuilding, but all is well.

Not sure what the 700 does, but food for thought.

Also, I didn't measure, but I'm sure it's more than 0.7L. At least on the 400, 0.7L probably wouldn't even wet the walls. If I were to guess, mine ended up with 3 maybe 4 liters? and the 700 is probably 1.75x bigger than the 400. :)

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13 Oct 2020 22:01 #186033 by tommylight
Is your Maho finished with servos and everything?
Been busy so might have missed it.

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14 Oct 2020 09:43 #186081 by chris mcm
Hello Tony
On the Maho C 700 there is the main transmission gear box and ahead of that a separate compartment ( oil bath) with two gear wheels that can slide on a spline to activate the horizontal spindle. The main transmission gearbox has a sight glass. The Technical Documentation indicates a volume of oil approx 1.2 litres.
The filler cap is just ahead of the electric motor. I have not found the drain plug for the main transmission.
The compartment with the drive gears has a similar filler cap. there is no sight glass or dip stick. And yes, I have found the drain plug.
A piece of wood doweling used as a dip stick showed the compartment dry. I wrongly added oil and the lower spindle leaked.
The Technical document says this compartment should have decimal point .7 litres of oil. The lower drive gear is close to the casting and turned by hand effectively picks up oil. So it appears that my over filling may be the problem.
I don't really want to mess with the spindles of this hardly ever used machine.
It is however over fifty years old and grease in the spindles must be way past their use by date.
Removal and greasing is covered in the technical documentation. Not clear is how the hydraulic tool change is released with the spindle. I believe the Hydraulic pipe draws out with the spindle. Can any one tell me whether the bearing can be greased without taking them out of the spindle.
Thanks for writing Tony. And yes, I have watched your inspirational videos.
Thanks for your effort and helping me via this forum.
Chris McM Auckland New Zealand

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14 Oct 2020 10:15 #186083 by chris mcm
Further Tony
The seal at the end of the spindle may be a special and no longer available. It seems the design of the subject oil bath is such that oil will always remain below the level of the bearings. The driven gear for the horizontal spindle is always in oil so I don't believe it is a problem. I am sure the spindle will outlast me with normal use but I like things to be right. The oil drain of the main transmission is the bottom of the sight glass.
Thanks for your interest. Chris

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14 Oct 2020 17:10 #186107 by ThisOldTony
it's 90ish% there. I have done some screwing around with the machine under power (servos cutting steel) but still a lot of electrical stuff to do, inputs/outputs, some kind of PC cabinet? All the not-fun-stuff that takes forever and I've got to drive out twice a day because i'm always missing that ONE fitting.
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