CNC Router Rebuild

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08 Feb 2014 11:01 #43633 by johndavi
CNC Router Rebuild was created by johndavi
When it comes to CNC I am a Noob. I am extremely fluent in Linux especially Ubuntu/Debian. We have a CNC Router that the manufacturer's support is less than adequate. I shared LinuxCNC as a possible solution to my superiors. I have been asked to gather information on the cost and a list of parts that I would need.

This is a fairly simple 3 axis CNC Router

The original manufacture is ATD accuratetoolsonline.com/router.html

The original manufacture for the controller and PC is actek www.actekinc.com/

My goal is to replace the failed controller with hardware easily supported by LinuxCNC and replace the PC with a non propitiatory system I can support and maintain. With a user interface that only allows the standard user to run programs and editing of programs by admins only.

The programs also are fairly very simple. A straight route about 2 inches and a half circle cut about 2 ½ inches.

I have a copy of the G Codes and I have been in charge of maintaining and editing them as needed.

I apologize but I could use good simple 101 for dummies like help for planning and setting up the hardware that will work with LinuxCNC to operate the router.

Thank in advance for any and all the help / assistance from the users of this forum.

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08 Feb 2014 19:17 #43639 by BigJohnT
Replied by BigJohnT on topic CNC Router Rebuild
The first thing to determine is if the servo drives are ok and what drives them. If they take a velocity input +-10vdc and you have encoder feedback that is the simplest hardware to convert. Do you have a photo of the drives?

Most low power PC's will do fine, I like using Mesa 5i25/7i77 combo for servo machines. Being a Linux guru can be a problem sometimes LOL as you "know" how to do things in Linux. To determine if a PC is a good candidate run the live CD and do the jitter test.

JT

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09 Feb 2014 16:29 #43655 by Rick G
Replied by Rick G on topic CNC Router Rebuild
If you have not already might want to look here...

linuxcnc.org/docs/html/

and

wiki.linuxcnc.org/cgi-bin/wiki.pl?EMC2_Supported_Hardware

Rick G

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11 Feb 2014 02:39 #43719 by johndavi
Replied by johndavi on topic CNC Router Rebuild
I have looked at the Docs briefly. I am not failure with controllers and servos. That is why I made this post to get started in the right direction the first time.

JT here is what I have found out about the servos, yes they are ok. It was simply the controller that went bad. They are “Ametek MCG 1D23005-Q1-7”. Which are no longer available to buy. But since they work I would like to use them if possible.

I looked into Mesa 5i25/7i77 they seem fairly simple to work with. I found this PC, not sure if anyone has tried it or one like it?? www.bsicomputer.com/products/3692-EMS6521.html

Thanks, for the help so far.

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11 Feb 2014 08:29 #43733 by BigJohnT
Replied by BigJohnT on topic CNC Router Rebuild
If the drives take a +-10vdc to control them you should be ok with the 5i25 7i77 combo. Are the drives dumb ie do they have a resolver feedback to the drive and velocity inputs and the encoders connect to the control?

JT

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19 Feb 2014 07:24 #43962 by johndavi
Replied by johndavi on topic CNC Router Rebuild
Is there somebody with experience with CNC Router and LinuxCNC in or near Central Ohio that would be willing to come and help with this project. We will pay a fair rate for this service. If anyone is interested please email your contact information at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the subject CNC Router. Thanks for anyone who is interested.

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19 Feb 2014 13:02 #43967 by Todd Zuercher
Replied by Todd Zuercher on topic CNC Router Rebuild
I'm in Ohio, close to Wooster, but I'm not sure how much time I'd have to make a visit This should be a relatively simple conversion, you will however need to over come LinuxCNCs relatively steep learning curve to set up anything.

Why do you want to replace the old controller? Does it not do something you need it to, or is it broken?

The first thing you need to understand, is how the original control commanded the motors and drives. (most likely either step/direction, or analog +/-10v)

If it is step dir, then configuration is very simple, and you might not need much more than a pc to run LinuxCNC on, If you need or want feedback (required for analog control, optional with a step system) from the encoders, to LinuxCNC you will probably need additional hardware to interface with the motor drives.

The part number you listed for the servo, I am assuming is off of the motor it's self. Of much more use to us would be the model number of the servo drive(s) or amps.
(it looks like the motors are probably brushed DC NEMA23 motors, Pretty simple and generic as far as servos go).

The next thing you will want is to find documentation for the servo drives. This will be very helpful with figuring out how to wire them up to the new control system.

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19 Feb 2014 20:33 #43973 by johndavi
Replied by johndavi on topic CNC Router Rebuild

Todd Zuercher wrote: I'm in Ohio, close to Wooster, but I'm not sure how much time I'd have to make a visit This should be a relatively simple conversion, you will however need to over come LinuxCNCs relatively steep learning curve to set up anything.

Why do you want to replace the old controller? Does it not do something you need it to, or is it broken?

The first thing you need to understand, is how the original control commanded the motors and drives. (most likely either step/direction, or analog +/-10v)

If it is step dir, then configuration is very simple, and you might not need much more than a pc to run LinuxCNC on, If you need or want feedback (required for analog control, optional with a step system) from the encoders, to LinuxCNC you will probably need additional hardware to interface with the motor drives.

The part number you listed for the servo, I am assuming is off of the motor it's self. Of much more use to us would be the model number of the servo drive(s) or amps.
(it looks like the motors are probably brushed DC NEMA23 motors, Pretty simple and generic as far as servos go).

The next thing you will want is to find documentation for the servo drives. This will be very helpful with figuring out how to wire them up to the new control system.


Thanks for the Reply.

The purpose for the rebuild is that the controller / servo control box died. The OEM has been less than supportive. The PC and OS that they originally supplied were proprietary and also took a dump. I have borrowed some parts from a sister plant and we are crippling along for now.

But I need a solution and we can support in House going forward. For example the OEM wants to charge me $4500 just for a PC replacement. Old Celeron and a 4 Gig Flash HDD and Windows XP Home that has been modded. It does not take a Rocket Scientists to see we getting screwed.

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19 Feb 2014 21:45 #43975 by Todd Zuercher
Replied by Todd Zuercher on topic CNC Router Rebuild
Even on the most semingly integrated systems the "controler" and the "servo amps" (or drives) are almost always seperate parts. Most likely one or the other is what died. If you just had a pc crash the amps are most likely still ok. If the old controler still sort of works, but is detecting an error in the servo system, and shutting down. Then the old control might be fine, and the actual problem would have to be fixed for any new control sytem.

Anyway, the servo motors should have 2 sets of wires coming out of them. One will be the encoder cable, The other the power. The power wire will go to the amp/drive. Tthe encoder wires will either go to the same place or it could go directly to the control. They amp or drive, will most likely be housed in an electrical cabinet of some sort, probably well ventilated and maybe with external heat sinks. The amp/drive may be in its own closed box or an exposed circuit bord(s) within that cabinet. If the old amps are good and can be reused (ie. you can find out documentation about how to hook them up) this shouldn't be to hard.

If you post some pictures of the guts of this thing, maybe we can help shed some light on it.

PS. Another thing that should be in there somewhere is a large DC power supply to power the servo amps. This will also need to be checked out to make sure it is functioning.

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19 Feb 2014 22:55 #43977 by johndavi
Replied by johndavi on topic CNC Router Rebuild
Nothing is shutting down.
The control box with the amp has a failing communications port.
The on board memory that the stores the programs is also failing. I am assuming everything else is working.
Problem is I do not know the brands of the original parts for the amp or controller, or if like the PC they created and manufactured these parts them selfs.
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