Brother TC-225 / TC-229 adventure!

27 Jul 2017 13:23 #96564 by ihavenofish
controller is similar, but not the same but the pics would still be useful. but..... all your pics are down as well. could you re upload it to something not photobucket?

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27 Jul 2017 17:06 #96578 by andypugh
I think that I have seen other people with a machine that needs to continue working duplicating the existing controller connectors on the LinuxCNC setup. Then they can plug back in to the known-good controller when paying work comes in, and switch back to developing the LinuxCNC setup in the quiet periods.

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27 Jul 2017 17:44 #96584 by ihavenofish
yeah, ive determined that its pretty easy to pin into the connectors (arduino style) as a temp setup, then once its all running correctly, do something more permanent.

it seems the only drawback i may have is that i have to initialise the whole machine in one go, as opposed to just one sub system at a time. luckily there isnt much to the machine so it still may be pretty easy.

now i just need that other guys photo of the drive pinout haha. i have messaged him so hopefully he can sent it along. the google thumbnail is blurry but it shows the analogue cmd, analogue ground, encoder abz +-, but then hes got some other pins, with diodes bridging?, but i cant read what they are. one may be the torque monitor, one might be an enable. bah.

maybe the tc211 will be similar enough as well, but it uses much different drives.

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27 Jul 2017 19:19 #96593 by ihavenofish
blurry pin out pic

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28 Jul 2017 02:39 #96605 by ihavenofish
ok, after more poking and tracing... I think I have a plan of attack.

theres a 24v input block, and 24v output block at the bottom. these get passed to the relay board. many signals pass right through to the control board. limits for example. so I can just test continuity and wire those up.

some of the relays on the board are labeled and have to do with the atc. others don't have any meaningful label. some are very likely not used and meant to drive external accessory devices.

there is a safety system board with 5 24v alarm outputs that go right to the control board.

so, what i think I'm going to do then is just wire in every pin i KNOW what it does, and then, trial and error the rest.

I'm setting up the Linux cnc pc right now.

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28 Jul 2017 17:30 #96622 by ihavenofish
ok, i have *some* diagrams. might be enough.

on the axis drives (and spindle) connection to the control board, we have

- spd(analogue speed)
- analogue ground
- encoder abz
- a start (enable) pin/ground pair
- there is an alarm output from the drive which is wired in a somewhat odd way
- theres an analogue torque monitor output (used only on the spindle on the existing control board)
- the spindle has a gain control which i assume is analogue but could be for stepping through settings.

i expect i can start with the speed control and encoder feedback, and enable pin, and go from there.

the enable pin is 12v it seems which is odd. i'm not 100% sure how to deal with that. resistor? i imagine the gain pin may also be 12v.

the analogue speed control is also called 15v. its like that on my maho machine a well. i guess it derives its 0-10v from 15. there is a small power supply that makes +15v and -15v. i imagine that we will ignore this and just use the mesa's normal +-10v.

unfortunately its difficult to measure anything on this machine while its running under the old control due to the types of connectors.

anyhow, i also have a good starting point on the IO connections though i dont have the actual pinouts of the main connectors, i know what most of everything does and where it goes.

tomorrow will be a fun day.

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30 Jul 2017 02:55 #96669 by ihavenofish
welp, i think were at the "plug in the mesa" stage. eep.

ive determined via some testing that to start up the machine's main power to the drives and other system, i need to engage just one relay output from linuxcnc.

so the sequence will be:

- turn on mains power to machine
- turn on computer and boot Linux
- hit power on the machine front panel
- boot linuxcnc
- have linuxcnc engage the one relay (with the start next to the estop button in linuxcnc ui maybe?)

the emergency stop and the end stop limit switches disengage that relay. so i imagine that limit and estop might be purely PC controlled, and have no hard wired function. if the pc dies after all, the relay disengages and the drives shut down. the same thing will go for other alarms. i guess this is good cause we can do some soft overrides if needed to get the machine off the limits etc.

anyhow, if that does what it should, the next stage is to wire in all the inputs and assign them functions (primarily limits).

from there, wire the X drive, make it run, tune it, etc. the do the other drives and spindle. will need to figure out how to orient the spindle as well - which is basically homing it with its index and then determining where true 0 is relative to that (it may well be dead on index, but its unlikely).

then theres the Z brake - which i don't even know what its doing - not much. maybe its dead, or just very weak. maybe its dynamic for atc use. it sure isn't braking when stopped.

then we do the atc functionality which is some relays and inputs and telling lunuxcnc what to do with it.

lastly, we get the coolant and air blast stuff working.

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30 Jul 2017 03:12 #96670 by ihavenofish
oh, looking ahead to the atc...

we have switches:
Z- bottom
Z+ top of working Z
Z home
ATC top tool changer rotation position
ATC area

so, from the earlier discussion on this:
Z axis is out working axis
W axis is our ATC axis

ignoring desires for continuous motion, we can when calling a tool change:
- stop main spindle
- simultaneously send spindle C axis home and go to Z axis home in coordinated motion ---- Z axis home = W axis home
- switch to W axis mode
- disregard or override z top limit switch during a tool change call
- move W axis to top (+80mm or whatever it is)
- rotate tool carousel cw or ccw and read its encoder to get to desired tool then hit its brake
- send W axis home
- switch back to Z axis normal mode

safety functions would need to be that when NOT in W axis tool change top position, atc carousel can NOT move. likewise when inside W axis travel area, SPINDLE may NOT spin.

this seems like it would work perfectly, missing only the desire to have a fluid chip to change motion - which we can try to devise at a later date. this older tc225 did not have that anyway, it stops the z before going to change. only the newer tc229 did it as a single motion.

this all doesn't sound that hard no?


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30 Jul 2017 21:59 #96709 by andypugh

this all doesn't sound that hard no?)

Not so far, though the devil is in the details :-)

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31 Jul 2017 01:20 #96712 by ihavenofish
ok, computer and mesa card set up, and important brother signals for start up.

now, how do I get a start up sequence going?

basically, I need to engage the main start up relay, and then, after a second or 2, engage the Z axis brake release. where would I add this in so it happens when I "turn on" linuxcnc?


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