Light Machine Corp. Benchman XTr (retrofit)
I have done some close inspections of the unit and a few voltage checks. As I suspected, the computer cannot initialize the motion controller card. I suspect it is bad. When I got power and air I attempted to raise and lower the tool carousel with the front panel buttons. It did not work. I could manually push the pneumatic solenoid buttons and that operated the lift to the down position. I received an email from intelitek and the support agent indicated that there needed to be communication with the motion control card before the front buttons would work. Can anyone verify that?
Other than that I believe the unit has a 4th axis control built in. Also flood and that is a BIG plus. I did spot one small capacitor that looks like it was going bad and replaced it. So far, it is a big glorified paperweight.
I am curious if you guys running the factory software have been able to come across PID values for the X/Y/Z axes?
Mac, if you have a copy of the user's manual (34-7713-0001 dated 11/98) you have the same info I've got.
There does not seem to be any drive tuning info within the software that I have noticed.
I would really like to get my hands on the schematic for my machine (Ser# 021-55AE-0184) . It's pretty busy in the back of the machine!
I had been fighting an alarm which turned out to be the Renco encoder on the SMW 4th. After much Googling and phone calls and emails,
the folks at www.encoder.com got me set up with a replacement.
You sound like you are well advanced in the process and I believe you are right with the Mesa combo being the way to move forward. Did you replace the servo drivers? My initial thoughts are to try to keep the power supplies, servos and motors. I will also keep the tool changer pneumatics but will probably need to develop a controller to handle some of the operations. My first goal is to get movement and spindle. Do you have those working?
The servo drives have been a challenge to tune properly. If you can come across the original PID values, that would help out tremendously. A brief chat with Copely Controls a while back left me with the impression that the drives were specially tuned. Others who have used Copelys in the past said they shouldn't tune any differently. I have contemplated getting new drives, but wanted to try and get some PID FF0/FF1/FF2 values from someone before buying new drives. Ultimately, new amps may be the best way to go, but I was trying to keep costs down.
My machine also came with a SWM 4th axis, so when you are in the parameters, try to get the numbers for everything!
If you want, let's find some public place to post files. I have a ton of technical specs and other stuff from the last few years of digging.
The addendum detailed how to access the servo parameters.
The X-Y-Z servo parameters are the same:
Follow Error .1
Int Range 40
"A" (rotary) axis servo parameters (SWM RT 5C):
Follow Error .1
Int Range 40
Spindle parameters (45,000 rpm spindle):
Follow Error .1
Int Range .1
I also found CDs for the control programs V2.0.4, V2.0.9 which are compatible with the ISA NextMove card, and V3.0.10 which is for the
PCI card. There is no 3.5 floppy for the machine specific configuration files.
Mac.... you brought up something I had not really considered before... PID tuning... I am rethinking the Mesa controller and think I might go with a Kflop/Kanalog system as they seem to have more support when it comes to PID testing. Might make it more attractive in a re-sale situation. Not really thinking of resale but hey, 20 year old Bridgeport mills still sell because there are no barriers to use them. This thread rocks!
steve_a wrote: I am rethinking the Mesa controller and think I might go with a Kflop/Kanalog system as they seem to have more support when it comes to PID testing
Are you sure about that? You might be looking in the wrong place.
The Mesa cards don't do the PID loop, that happens in LinuxCNC. This has the advantage that you can "watch" the controller and see exactly what it is doing. It has the potential disadvantage that it isn't a super-fast PID loop, running typically at 1 or 2 kHz.
(There will often be a hardware loop in the drives controlling motor current, I am only talking here about the position loop)
If your drives take velocity input from the motors then there is also a hardware velocity loop. In this situation a 1kHz LinuxCNC position loop is more than adequate.
Are you aware that Kflop is an alternative to LinuxCNC, ie, not something that you can use _with_ LinuxCNC?