View Full Version : PLS360 Carriage Jumping Issue

matt heinzel
04-09-2008, 12:20 PM
Ok so we have two separate PLS 360's 30Watts. A few months ago one of the machines started jumping off the track. It seemed to be completely random, and ULS had no idea why it was doing it. First they sent a new carriage, then a new arm, then a new CPU. Nothing fixed it, uninstalled drivers and installed other ones, nothing. Finally we decided to see what would happen if you connected it to a new machine, no jumping. Then we put the other system on the older computer and sure enough it jumped. So it was a communication issue or something.

Anyway last week the middle machine jumped, it seemed to be an isolated issue. It has run fine since. Well just now the original machine jumped again.

When I say jump, basically I mean you hear it sort of speed up and then hit the side of the arm, which puts the arm about 4 inches from home when it goes back.

Any ideas what this could be if it is not the computer?


Paul Brinkmeyer
04-09-2008, 12:55 PM
Does it happen when you are doinig something else with the computer while the laser is cutting? What else is the computer doing when this happens.
Is the computer on the low end of the recomended specs.?
Try bringing up the windows task manager and watch what the cpu usage is.
I have had the same issue at times, but my computer is at the minimum of the spec's. I found making sure I do not use the computer for anything else helps.

matt heinzel
04-09-2008, 12:59 PM
That was the initial issue with the machine. We had a computer that was lower on the specs and when ever we do a print merge, or look ahead on print jobs in the driver it would jump. Now we have a new machine with more then enough RAM and CPU power. The person engraving said he wasn't even doing anything on the computer when it happend. I'm really not sure what to think, I really hope it was just a one time thing.

Dan Hintz
04-09-2008, 2:25 PM
Unlimited CPU cycles and RAM mean nothing if your comm line is interrupted for another job... make sure you don't have any odd print spoolers, ethernet programs grabbing control of the ports, etc. If the machine is controlled directly by the port (rather than the design being offloaded to memory in the laser machine), it would only take a single unexpected interrupt cycle to throw comms for a loop.

matt heinzel
04-09-2008, 2:28 PM
Ok thanks Dan. I have to say I love this forum. I have two posts up today and both have got good feedback right away.

Mike Mackenzie
04-09-2008, 6:23 PM

What is the version of software you are running?

matt heinzel
04-10-2008, 8:04 AM
We are using 2.18.30 ULS Driver on both machines. We did go back and put an old driver that still had the issue. It has had 2.18.30 since we got the new machine.

Benedict Roussos
04-10-2008, 3:41 PM
Matt , I think I know the answer and it's really silly.
I had the same problem with my V460. When I was trying to engrave at the full of 60cm length, the cariage was "jumping" and double engrave the last 4-5cm (on the right). The answer to the problem was the following. As I have air assist installed from ULS the worker who made the instalation couldnt fit up the cover of the air pipes behind the arm so he bend the edges of it. So when the cariage was moving far to the right the pipes were finding resistance and made the cariage to change position on X axis. After we unbend the edges and with origin point at 0,0 the problem was solved. You can check this and tell as.

matt heinzel
04-10-2008, 3:56 PM
Sadly we don't have air assist. When it happens it sounds like the machine speeds up and then it hits the left side of the arm.

John Volkmar
04-11-2008, 7:25 AM
Hi Matt: One other simple fix would be to ask the service group to send you a new X axis drive gear ( the one that mounts on the stepper motor on the right side ). That part has solved this issue for me several times.

matt heinzel
04-11-2008, 8:14 AM
I have a new x axis drive gear also. Thats the problem every part that they have sent me does nothing to fix the problem. I spent weeks working with ULS tech people.

John Volkmar
04-11-2008, 9:12 AM
Did you replace that part? I know it is frustrating when you cannot seem to find the issue. Have you had the rep out see if they could assist you?

matt heinzel
04-11-2008, 9:19 AM
She is coming in May. They sent a new motor with the new arm. It was all assembled but then they said that it might be slipping so I took it apart and put it back together with now luck. Our rep will finally be here in May to setup our new 50watt system, thats 4 lasers total we will have! I can here the power company crying already!

John Volkmar
04-11-2008, 9:29 AM
Sorry you have had so many problems. Have you asked your sales rep for some assistance? Sometimes you have to actually see the machine to find out why it is mis-behaving!

matt heinzel
04-11-2008, 9:50 AM
Yeah she is 10 hours away and we are up in SNOW country. She hates driving in it! But we hope she can see the issues if it really still exists!

Zvi Grinberg
04-15-2008, 12:51 PM
I was reading through this thread and I am a bit confused.

I understand that Matt swapped the workstations between the laser machines and the problem did not move with the laser machines. That means that the problem was on the PC.

If this is the case than I am short of suggesting anything new.
The computer has changed hopefully to a more powerful one, with properly behaving USB2 port (I hope), the software driver is updated, and maybe the only thing left is the USB cable. Please don't laugh, we had it on a customer's machine, and the cable was a reason for similar problems.

If I got it wrong, then I have a suggestion about the Laser machine.

Matt, you reported to have replaced the CPU. You did not mention if that was just the CPU main board or the whole unit with X-Axis card on it (and with Y and Z cards as well). What exactly was replaced?

Another option would be the Power Supply. If there is any problem of draughting electric current to drive the axis motor, it could happen at the PS or at the X-Axis amplifier (on the X-Axis card, which is inserted onto the main CPU board).

If the frequency of the problem gets higher as you continue to operate the laser that would be a classic opportunity of heating failure. You could use coolant spray on suspected component(s) and see if it gets any better.

Hope I've been helpful


matt heinzel
04-15-2008, 12:56 PM
It was the entire CPU unit. I did try to swap the cables out. This newest jumping issue only happend once. So I hope it was just "Random".

Paul Brinkmeyer
05-21-2008, 5:09 PM
Did you every get this resolved?
Can you share what was causing the "jumping".


matt heinzel
05-21-2008, 11:10 PM
I think it was resolved. It seems it was a communication error between the computer and the system. Since the computer sends the print over it was getting jammed up somehow. We put it on a new nice computer and now there have been no problems.