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Thread: Z-Depth Trouble

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Buford, GA
    Posts
    45

    Default Z-Depth Trouble

    I'm refining my last post a bit.

    My machine is consistently NOT cutting through the material when it should.

    My machine is a 2016 PRS Alpha ATC. I have skimmed the spoilboard. I program the file to cut through the material by 0.15". That doesn't come close. I keep changing it until I'm telling it to cut into the spoilboard by 0.080" before it does. And it's NOT cutting 0.080" into the spoilboard.

    On my ancient 2001-2002 PRT machine, it worked like a dream, even if I didn't skim the board for weeks.

    What on Earth could be causing this?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Memphis TN
    Posts
    878

    Default

    I don't have an ATC so I can't answer for sure...

    Did you adjust your zero plate when you skimmed the table? Do the end mills in your ATC carousel have to be re-zeroed?
    ShopBot Details:
    PRS Alpha 96x60x12
    4hp Spindle
    12" indexer
    Aspire
    Rhino

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Buford, GA
    Posts
    45

    Default

    Yes, I ran the C73 table offset for the zero plate after skimming, and all the bits have been zeroed correctly.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Thorp, WI
    Posts
    2,775

    Default

    Does the Z axis actually move the commanded distance? Zero it out, move 1" and use a dial indicator to verify. Try 2", etc. If it's off, your unit values may be incorrect for the Z axis.

    "It’s easier to fool everyone than it is to convince them they've been fooled" - Mark Twain





  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    , Richmond Tx
    Posts
    1,057

    Default

    After verifying that it is setting the z height to the correct position, run a file and then check again after the file runs to see if it moved. Bits can slip in a collet sometimes as well. Mainly like was said above, verify it is actually placing the bit at a certain height when you tell it to go there. I have seen loose spoilboards that were flycut without vac hold running and then when a sheet of material is there to cut the vac pulls it down lower. Make sure your cutting file does not have a start depth in vectric. (the box above the desired cutting depth)
    Kenneth

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Diamond Lake, WA
    Posts
    1,694

    Default

    Have you run the C72 on all your tools since you set up? Tis is vital to all the values being correct. When I start each day, I run C3 to align on 3 axis. If I am referancing the top of the material for my Zzero, I run C2 to zzero. If I'm going to be referencing the surface of the spoilboard as my zzero, I C73. I use Shopbot Link which throws a lot of other wrenches into the smooth running gears. After running C73, I have to MZ to the thickness of my material and then do a ZZ to set my zzero reference.

    Since you just got this machine and are new to ATC operations, I would suggest running the entire course of alignment routines. Using an ATC is very different from a machine that does not have an ATC. This is something I struggled with when I added an ATC to my machine. All of a sudden zero references are very different. Zzero reference was the toughest for me to get my head around. You have to make sure all the other alignment routines are run successfully first, because all the ATC code uses these routines to determine where it is in the world. Everything runs of proximity switches with the ATC, especially the Z proximity switch. If you don't have the instructions for a full ATC alignment, ask the Shopbot folks and they can walk you thru the whole thing. I can't stress enough how vital this initial alignment is.

    I ran my PRSAlpha from 2009 until last year without an ATC and then got the ATC. Took me a couple of months to get things ironed out and fully operational to where it now purrs along very nicely.
    Don
    Diamond Lake Custom Woodworks, LLC
    www.dlwoodworks.com
    ***********************************
    Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in one pretty and well preserved piece; But to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, worn out, bank accounts empty, credit cards maxed out, defiantly shouting "Geronimo"!

    If you make something idiot proof, all they do is create a better idiot.

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