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Thread: Fadal VMC Setup Questions

  1. #13
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    Nice tutorial there bubba, the only reason I never went in that depth is the way my company handles things. The home positions we use are usually y10 only, which make for easy loading, x and z stay at cs position. Also I've never used the set fixture or set tool commands we are told where the offsets come from we pick them up and enter what we get in the offset page. For tool lengths we use tool presetters to get our lengths and enter them in the offset page as well. Its kinda hard to tell someone the easy way to do things as most of the time the easy way to a person is what they are taught/learned, and most of the time there is always easier ways to do things as is the case with some of the things bubba brought up.



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    As a newbie / 2 year Fadal operator on an older machine.. you guys need to remember that Sys 96 and older does not have the same command / menu structure as Sys97 and newer.

    That enter next command prompt is not in Sys95 with the 1400-4 cards. OK, well , not on my 1993 VMC15 anyway. However, I did change the system board card to Sys97 and sure enough, there is that 4th screen with enter next command. its also in Sys101.3 which I have too.

    Also let me help make it clear about CS. I fought this issue. They are telling you about the TRAVEL with CS ( cold start ) ... If you have 20 inch of travel and you CS at 20 inch ( Z head on the table lets say ) , you cannot go UP but 10 inches. You are not going to make it to the ATC line up CS index mark. You have to except where it stops, and do CS again. Now, you can move to the ATC index mark and stop it there, do CS again.. now you are lined up with the correct position for ATC working correctly. Its the same however with X and Y .. if you have 20 inches of table, and you happen to CS at the far most edge, you are not going to make it to the other side of the table before it just stops jogging.. you have to CS again to fix this at the proper index marks.

    I ran a mill with limit switches and it did not have these CS / travel issues. All the parts of the Fadal are very software driven and encoder driven. It has those line up marks so the X Y Z all travel the correct distance you have set in parameters table. I have even over ridden the CS issue with travel by setting the X Y travel to something else in SETP, but this creates other issues if you dont know what to watch for. but it does allow you to work on a part just a bit out of your table area if you really really have to.

    Must be careful with how the machine starts and powers off. the menu with number 4 home axis, number 2 power off home axis is the most important at the end of the day so the start of the day is easy.

    The system upon startup will ask you if you want to return to the last 0 , 0 , 0 position. If you do not know what this position was, do not use it. If the CS is not been correct, it will drive the table to axis overload if it is out the parameters. On Sys95 it does not TELL how far it is going to move from CS to this 0 , 0 , 0 location. Sys 96 and above is nice enough to tell you how far it is going to move from CS to what the last Zero location was. Watch out for this.



  3. #15
    Monkeywrench Technician DareBee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by little bubba View Post

    As for fixture offsets, my rule is NEVER EVER use a SETH or a SETY or a SETX and ESPECIALLY never ever use a SETZ. Leave the home position where it is (E0). At the end of the program run back to E0X0Y(1/2 your travel minus a bit)
    I agree with this very heartily, always use fixture offsets.
    Some of us (especially in format 2 or Fanuc lingo) call E0 = G53 and the fixture offsets are G54 to G??
    The only datum I ever adjust is SETA. A can not be over-run so it is the simplest setup method.

    Now as far as all the commands people want you to type, you need to remember some, but not many. When you are at the <enter next command> line, hit the space bar, a wonderful menu pops up. Hit the space bar again and another pops up, hit it again and another pops up, hit it again, and you are back to <enter next command>.
    This is not always true.
    The "Space bar menu" has to be enabled in the machine parameters. I didn't know that the space bar menu existed for my first few years of Fadal use. There is also 2 variations of the space bar menu available.
    Maybe this is specific to my software version, but this is how mine is.


    Now
    I understand that you have just received this machine - right?
    If it was properly prepared for shipping, the counterweight will have 2 bars through the casting holding it in position from moving. These bars will be through the casting, protruding just below where the TC arm bolts on.
    OTOH - if these bars were NOT used, the counterweight chain could have broken during shipping and the counterweight could be laying in the bottom doing nothing. Needless to say - this is bad.
    Either of these situations would allow the head to freefall.

    www.integratedmechanical.ca


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    Thumbs up One Problem Solved!

    ....and maybe several more.

    Thanks so much for the input. This morning I found out what the counterweight bars were and pulled them out. Then I put all the axis at home and did the CS. (One question, there was one long one and one short one...is that typical?)

    Bubba, et al , your comments about the machine being run off software limits sure cleared up a lot of my confusion. My engineering background plus my experience with my CNC mill has always related to limit switches so this whole homing and CS process went completely over my head (it's pretty shiny up there!)

    I'm sure I'll have a lot more questions as I progress along this path. Thanks again for all the help.



  5. #17
    Monkeywrench Technician DareBee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rdoty View Post
    ....and maybe several more.

    (One question, there was one long one and one short one...is that typical?)

    .
    Well... If it was me shipping it the bars would be however long the pieces I grab out of my short-rack happen to be.

    The CS system works really well. (until you put the motors back on in the wrong orientation). I like it.

    My lathe picks up on switches and rarely will it be within .002

    www.integratedmechanical.ca


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    Registered Neal's Avatar
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    Yes, that is typical. Try putting the long bar in either hole and you'll see why they are different.

    Neal



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    I am new to this forum hello to everyone out there. I have read some of the posting and this seems like a great place to get all sorts of info from some very experience individuals. I have recently purchased a 1996 Fadal 3016. The questions I have relates to what has been discussed in this posting. First in reading the manual, it says that you can set the part home (SETY, SETX) so that the table will move towards the operator to make loading and unloading easier. If you set the part home to do this what happens the next day when you CS the machine? Will it go to machine home or part home? Next question, would it be easier to set a fixture offset say E10 at this position than at the end of the program send table to E10. I have several Haas machines and I use G128 Work Offset to do this. I am thinking the reason for haveing part home is to position the table. Am I missing something? Some of these question may seem stupid to someone very familiar to the Fadal controller. I believe I am going to love this machine when I get the hang of it. Thanks for any assistance in this matter.



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    Quote Originally Posted by 11toma View Post
    I am new to this forum hello to everyone out there. I have read some of the posting and this seems like a great place to get all sorts of info from some very experience individuals. I have recently purchased a 1996 Fadal 3016. The questions I have relates to what has been discussed in this posting. First in reading the manual, it says that you can set the part home (SETY, SETX) so that the table will move towards the operator to make loading and unloading easier. If you set the part home to do this what happens the next day when you CS the machine? Will it go to machine home or part home? Next question, would it be easier to set a fixture offset say E10 at this position than at the end of the program send table to E10. I have several Haas machines and I use G128 Work Offset to do this. I am thinking the reason for haveing part home is to position the table. Am I missing something? Some of these question may seem stupid to someone very familiar to the Fadal controller. I believe I am going to love this machine when I get the hang of it. Thanks for any assistance in this matter.

    When you CS (cold start) the machine, it will always go to the center of the table. All the Fadals at my shop now have been upgraded with Numeryx controls so I've forgotten a few things. But when I used to run the old control I would use one of the fixture offsets at the end of programs to send the table forward. I would never really use the setx or sety commands for the home position because if you change the home position, all the fixture offsets are affected by this. I would just use E1 all the time unless I had several things setup then I would use E1, E2, E3 etc but I would never use the home position on parts. The G128 you are talking about sounds alot like the G92 on Fadals, I could be wrong.

    If you have the money, I HIGHLY! recommend upgrading to numeryx (used to be called numatix). You could literally learn to use it in an hour. It will pay for itself very quickly. And it will make you think that the old Fadal controls are the most idiotic thing you have ever seen in your entire life.
    http://numeryx.com/cnc/



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    Hello everyone,
    We recently had out 4020 VMC "tuned" up anfter moving it to a new location in our shop by compumachine. I'm having a problem with the home position after a program runs. the issue is that at the end of my program, there is a string of cosde that reads "E0 x0 y0", and I went in and edited the line to force the table to come to a position that helped me reach the vice. I changed the code to read "E0 x5. y5." the table actually actually goes to x10.2885 y5.2125 instead. is there a way to change the table position to read correctly. I've done this change many times before and never had an issue. I've tried usng the CS command and the setX SetY command. I've tried turning the machine off and on again...I've never come across this before. I'm wondering if the repair guy set something in the parameters that make it move off an extra x5.2885 and y.2125 . can anyone help?



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    Send me a message with your phone number and what time to reach you and I'll try to help you over the phone.

    Need help with your Fadal? Send me a message or visit www.TheFadalParts.com. We have over 25 years of experience at Fadal and offer FREE TECHNICAL SUPPORT OVER THE PHONE!


  11. #23
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    posting a files useing the rs232... I am looking for a drip feed programm for my 95 4020vmc

    any low cost options? I use the fadal program to load now and it works good but is MSDOS based and no drip option

    thanks
    curt



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    I'm using DNCv4 from dncsoftware.com -- This software support X-modem protocol, allowing you to transfer at speeds of 115k baud error-free (use "DNCX" command instead of just "DNC").

    Cost was about $100 or so I remember



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