This is my first post on this forum, but I have spent a lot of time reading and trying to absorb and understand the vast wealth of knowledge and information that gathers here. I have been building up a home fabrication and machine shop as time and finances allow (sounds familiar, huh?), and recently, brought home a new toy. The machine is a Lagun 3-axis knee mill with an Anilam Crusader II control. I found it on Craigslist, and the listing said the controls needed some work. This ended up being a best case scenario, as the motors (3hp spindle, SEM and Baldor servo) all function perfectly, and the three glass scales check out fine. Mechanically, the machine is in excellent condition, just the normal minor issues to address. The machine was at a pattern shop for seven years, and never used. Moving it home was a bit of a production, as it is a solid machine! It has an 11 x 58 table, NT40 spindle, ballscrews, and a totally rigid, fixed head. The thing pretty much dwarfs my series one Bridgeport, and clears the ceiling by 4 inches.
After some disassembly, major cleaning, and a paint job, I am starting to turn this thing into a new machine. My plan is to lose the original electronics, except for the servo motors, glass scales, and servo power supply. I bought 3: Viper 200 drives from Larken Automation, a PC-2-route combo board from Campbell Designs, 3hp VFD from Automation Direct, and a 3 Ghz. P4 PC to run Mach 3. I have done quite a bit of searching on using glass scales for feedback to a servo drive, but have not found very much. I have tested each scale with an oscilloscope, and they are an A,B quadrature encoder with .01mm resolution. My thought is that because the machine is tight, and has virtually zero backlash in the screws and timing belts, that using the scales might actually work. Has anyone else actually tried this with any success?
I attached a few pictures of the machine in various stages of the project. It has been a fun project so far (except for cleaning), but now I think I need to consult the knowledge base here to help sort out the controls. I am sure I will have more questions in the near future.