Looking for help in getting an older CNC running

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12 Jan 2015 13:26 #54909 by Russianwolf
Hi all,
I am new at this so use small words. ;)

I recently bought this CNC lathe. The electronics in it were questionable, so I trashed them and got a G540 driver box ( www.automationtechnologiesinc.com/produc...controller-duplicate ) and some new motors. I have just about gotten everything ready for a test but one part remains a big question for me.

When I took off the control panel I saw that it has a US Digital E2 Encoder to monitor/control spindle speed. But I have no clue if the old electronics will be compatible with the new G540 driver system. The older electronics does have a DB9 pin output that would match the G540 box's input terminal, but if they are actually compatible is anyone's guess.

So. What can I do here? I will likely be testing the X and Y axis system tomorrow. No problems there I hope. But the Spindle speed and threading??????

I do have a digital tach that I can get the spindle speed and enter it into the control software manual if that would help, but I'd love to get the encoder doing its original job.

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12 Jan 2015 13:28 - 12 Jan 2015 13:31 #54910 by Russianwolf
Last edit: 12 Jan 2015 13:31 by Russianwolf.

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12 Jan 2015 17:40 - 12 Jan 2015 17:42 #54920 by ArcEye
Hi

The Gecko G540 9 pin sockets are to connect motors to, no use for the encoder

The easiest answer is you will need a second breakout board and PCI parport card to connect it to.

The encoder is fairly simple, interface wise, it has 5 pins, +5v, GND, Z, A, B

www.usdigital.com/products/e2

The query to my mind is how is the index arranged when the drive is not 1:1?

Your photo shows it driven off the spindle presumably, at a great reduction which is going to produce a large number of index pulses per spindle revolution.

You could probably resolve that via a 'countup' component (for want of a better name), which takes a number of pulses before emitting one of its own.

So long as it is undamaged, looks to be a fairly decent encoder and as it appears it can be set to 128 PPR, (if it was running 1:1) could be used through a software encoder component.

regards
Last edit: 12 Jan 2015 17:42 by ArcEye.

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12 Jan 2015 21:00 #54931 by andypugh
The G540 has 4 digital inputs (on the terminal block, not on the DB connectors) but with the encoder needing 3 inputs that would only leave one input for home and limit switches.

You would need to check whether the spindle speed and pulses-per-rev of the encoder will exceed the counting rate of the software encoder counter component. What base-thread period have you configured with?

If you do need more IO then rather than a second parallel port card you might want to look at the mesa 5i25 which costs a bit more, but can connect direct to the G540 and can give much faster pulse timing than the parallel port. It can also cope with about 1000x the encoder pulse frequency.

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13 Jan 2015 05:59 #54948 by Russianwolf
thanks

As mentioned this is all new to me, so I have no idea what the old electronics are. All I can tell you is that it does go out on a DB9 connector using only 7 pins.

The Gecko control box that I bought has an additional DB9 connector for the input that is wire to the 4 input ports on the G540 as well as a fifth lead going to the power supply.

I assembled everything today that I have. Put power to the G540 and got a green light. Connected the 2 steppers that I had wired and got a green light and holding torque. hooked up the computer via the DB25 and green light. But I can't seem to figure out how to test the steppers in LinuxCNC now. Even if I can only use the standard lathe 2 axis for now, that's fine.

I found this video on youtube
but don't see these features on the version that I downloaded. Can someone point me to where I can play with this?

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13 Jan 2015 06:26 - 13 Jan 2015 06:27 #54949 by andypugh

But I can't seem to figure out how to test the steppers in LinuxCNC now. Even if I can only use the standard lathe 2 axis for now, that's fine.

Close LinuxCNC and then open "stepconf" from the "CNC" menu.

Can someone point me to where I can play with this?

That's a set of add-ins from the Russian CNC club:
linuxcnc.org/index.php/english/forum/40-...i?limitstart=0#34715
Last edit: 13 Jan 2015 06:27 by andypugh.

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13 Jan 2015 08:28 #54954 by Russianwolf
thanks Andy... that got it running. Funny thing is, I went and took a nap (been a hard day) when I woke up I went back to the home page and saw the page about configuring it and then running it.... doh!

I'll look into the add-ins. I was really attracted to it for making simple parts.

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13 Jan 2015 18:33 #54968 by andypugh

I'll look into the add-ins. I was really attracted to it for making simple parts.


There is also NGCGUI (which seems to be what JT mainly uses)
linuxcnc.org/docs/html/gui/ngcgui.html

Whereas I make nearly everything on my lathe using my own GUI:
www.linuxcnc.org/index.php/english/forum...s/26550-lathe-macros
(I need to move some lines in the G-code around, I messed up the last update)

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