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Thread: calling on the probe experts

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Radford VA
    Posts
    592

    Default calling on the probe experts

    I am looking to use the Shopbot probe to calculate the 2D profile of an existing turned part. I won't need to rotate the indexer at all. All that I need to do is probe one side of the turning in order to get a 2D profile of the shape. From that point, I know how to import that 2D polyline into Aspire and do a two rail sweep in order to re-create the part on my indexer.

    I don't currently have a probe and have never used one.

    I see two scenarios that could work, my indexer is mounted along the Y-axis:
    1) Align my Shopbot's x-axis on the centerline of the part (vertically). Then probe the top of the part moving in Y and Z only. From reading the online info about the Shopbot indexer software, I think that the software won't handle the Z moves, unless I can swap the Z for the X axis.

    2)Align my Shopbot's y-axis on the centerline of the part (horizontally). Then probe the side of the part moving in X and Y only. I think this will work if I have clearance between the part and my table.

    For those that use their probe, does this sound possible?
    PRT Alpha with 7.2 upgrade, indexer, and PC router

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Radford VA
    Posts
    592

    Default

    Well, this is my 2nd post in a row with no one responding. Anyway, I did figure this out. Option 2 above is what will work. The Copy Machine tool doesn't stop until it makes a full loop in 2D mode. But, you can hit the spacebar and it will stop and still write the dxf file. But, since you stopped the Copy Machine prematurely, it will not write the ending info in the dxf file. You have to open the dxf with Sbedit and a few lines of code. The code is outlined in the probe manual found here: https://www.shopbottools.com/ShopBot...izingProbe.pdf

    I don't have a probe. I just tried this by wrapping my part in aluminum foil and then ran a jumper wire from the foil to the z-zero plate. I then just used a 1/4" dowel in the collet and ran copy machine in the normally open mode. It worked like a charm. I then imported the dxf into Aspire. Then I had to offset it by .125" since I used a 1/4" diameter dowel.
    PRT Alpha with 7.2 upgrade, indexer, and PC router

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Garland Tx
    Posts
    2,264

    Default

    “Well, this is my 2nd post in a row with no one responding”

    Sorry about that… since I’ve used my probe exactly once in the last 15 years, I didn’t figure I was an expert!
    Your makeshift probe is genius! Maybe some foil tape would perfect it!

    SG

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Memphis TN
    Posts
    794

    Default

    I wonder if you could explain how your shade tree probe worked. How did the dowel, I assume a wooden one, make any sort of electrical contact with your part?

    I've done some backwoods digitizing by just manually moving the gantry using the arrow keys. It worked surprisingly well but was very tedious.

    Thanks!
    ShopBot Details:
    PRS Alpha 96x60x12
    4hp Spindle
    12" indexer
    Aspire
    Rhino

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Marquette, MI
    Posts
    3,379

    Default

    Another way to skin that cat: https://youtu.be/C7b7He0mtxk
    Gary Campbell
    GCnC Control
    GCnC411(at)gmail(dot)com
    ShopBot Controller Upgrades
    http://www.youtube.com/user/Islaww1


    "We can not solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them"
    Albert Einstein


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