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Thread: Mach 3 help

  1. #1

    Mach 3 help

    Got a new Chinese machine and having problems configuring the set up in Mach 3. I was wondering if there was anyone in the Dallas area running Mach 3 that might have some time to let me come by and figure it out. Iíve been trying to configure it on my days off for a week and canít quite get it 100% configured.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Marquette, MI USA
    Posts
    382
    Bobby...
    Some of the Chinese machines that ship with Mach have a hacked/cloned version that may not be fully functional compared to a licensed US version.
    Gary Campbell
    CNC Technology & Training
    The Ultimate Woodworking Machine
    GCnC411(at)gmail.com

    YouTube: Islaww1

  3. #3
    I kind of figured that they hacked this one. I’m going to contact Mach 3 and buy a license but this isn’t an issue of it not functioning properly, it is really my lack of knowledge on how to choose the correct settings. Tech support in China have said that they would set it up but I have to get an internet connection to my garage so they can access the computer. I am sure that when I can get that done they can help with that but was hoping to just learn a little more about Mach3 also.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Marquette, MI USA
    Posts
    382
    Why don't you install a Centroid Acorn on the machine? Lots of help for you on the centroidcncforum(dot)com. There's an Acorn section
    Gary Campbell
    CNC Technology & Training
    The Ultimate Woodworking Machine
    GCnC411(at)gmail.com

    YouTube: Islaww1

  5. #5
    I’m not opposed to it as I have to learn whatever I go with. Just don’t know how difficult it would be in switching over. I do have some documentation on machine but not sure if I have enough to make an easy switch. I will look into it. I kind of had that as a backup plan because I hear Chinese machines can have problems in Mach 3.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Marquette, MI USA
    Posts
    382
    Bobby...
    Don't have any answers for you, but a few questions:
    Does having a US made control software and matching hardware sound good to you?
    How about a forum dedicated to the DIY crowd? Numerous Chinese machines are being done, including by myself
    Would you rather use software written 2018 for current computers or one written in '05 to '07?
    How about a control software where the bugs get fixed and has been in use on high end machines since '86?

    There are more, ask them on the forum to guys that have switched from Mach 3
    Gary Campbell
    CNC Technology & Training
    The Ultimate Woodworking Machine
    GCnC411(at)gmail.com

    YouTube: Islaww1

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    46,935
    Gary speaks wisely, Bobby. The software is ultimately what makes the machine!
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Iowa USA
    Posts
    3,132
    How large is the machine?

    Is or does it
    have either a USB or CAT5 Ethernet connection?

    The seller can sent you the setup file via email, he does Not need to connect to your computer!

    There is also a Mach Support Forum, have you tried it? There is also a PDF manual. Do not buy a Mach license until you answer those questions above. If its just a plain O parallel port controller, consider the
    Acorn.
    Last edited by Bill George; 12-06-2018 at 10:01 PM.
    Retired Guy- Central Iowa. , LightObject 40w CO2 Laser and Chiller, MakerGear M2 3D Printer. Qe60+ Vinyl cutter. Fine Line Automation 4x4 CNC Router- Mach3

  9. #9
    Gary, I understand. My wife is getting upset with me constantly telling her I am buying something else for the machine right after buying it. I’ll think about it and compare the two connections. They did a good job of labeling every connection so maybe changing would be easy.

    Bill, it is a 4X8 machine. It connects to the motion board with usb. I downloaded the manual for reference. I really dislike their forum. Their search feature hasn’t been working in quite awhile and I haven’t registered for it. As far as the seller, they gave me set up files but they are a little vague and I found they had them online and they’re both different. I think they just wanted to do it the easier way and go into it and configure it for me. Ill see what happens this weekend when I am home. If it works then I will try it for a while and consider it. If not then I’ll order the acorn.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Iowa USA
    Posts
    3,132
    All you need is the file referenced like here and it can be set in an email > https://www.cncrouterparts.com/mach-...les-p-161.html Once you get that file its just copy and paste into the Mach3/4 folder.

    I am guessing the motion control board is a Chinese knock off paired with a standard Mach3/4 breakout board. Have you paid these people yet?
    Last edited by Bill George; 12-07-2018 at 9:32 AM.
    Retired Guy- Central Iowa. , LightObject 40w CO2 Laser and Chiller, MakerGear M2 3D Printer. Qe60+ Vinyl cutter. Fine Line Automation 4x4 CNC Router- Mach3

  11. #11
    Yes I have paid for the machine. They did send files to copy and paste into Mach3 but they are several different files. I don’t think that is that they are trying to not give me files or that anything is wrong with the Mach3. I’m sure it is just me not knowing what I am doing that is why they said it would be easier if they just accessed it and set everything up for me. I’ve been watching videos but even those some show different things to do so it is a little hard to take it all in and understand. That’s why I was hoping to find someone in my area who wouldn’t mind letting me see them operate the software so I can ask questions that I am unable to on videos.

    The seller and manufacturer have have been helpful. I can’t say anything bad about them. It is me that is having issues on learning. My last machine didn’t have an operating system to have to learn. It was a simple load file set zero and machine. This is like having to learn a foreign language.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
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    46,935
    Bobby, this sounds more like an initial commissioning/initial configuration issue rather than something that you'd be doing normally on a regular basis. Machines using Mach 3/4 or WinCNC or Acorn don't normally require the operator to know a whole lot of things to use the CNC machine. Commissioning/initial configuration would be hard for most of us, quite honestly. Personally...I'd find a way to give them access at least temporarily and let them get things running for you. Of course, I'd also seriously consider having Gary do an Acorn setup for the reasons he already stated.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  13. #13
    I ordered what I need to get WiFi out there and will let them do it then shut the WiFi down. Acorn sounds good but financially, I can’t justify it at this time after all the other expenses that I shelled out and am about to to get this up and running. If Mach 3 proves to be an issue then I will address it sooner otherwise it will be on a list of to do things

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    McKinney, TX
    Posts
    1,578
    Sounds like you’re on the way Bobby. Sorry I wasn’t any help but enjoyed talking with you.
    Steve Jenkins, McKinney, TX. 469 742-9694
    Always use the word "impossible" with extreme caution

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Iowa USA
    Posts
    3,132
    Quote Originally Posted by bobby milam View Post
    Yes I have paid for the machine. They did send files to copy and paste into Mach3 but they are several different files. I don’t think that is that they are trying to not give me files or that anything is wrong with the Mach3. I’m sure it is just me not knowing what I am doing that is why they said it would be easier if they just accessed it and set everything up for me. I’ve been watching videos but even those some show different things to do so it is a little hard to take it all in and understand. That’s why I was hoping to find someone in my area who wouldn’t mind letting me see them operate the software so I can ask questions that I am unable to on videos.

    The seller and manufacturer have have been helpful. I can’t say anything bad about them. It is me that is having issues on learning. My last machine didn’t have an operating system to have to learn. It was a simple load file set zero and machine. This is like having to learn a foreign language.
    The xxxxx.XML file contains all the info you should need. If they sent more than one of those files did you ask which one you should use? Dropping a new XML file in, overrides the one already there. Yes you can go through a generic copy of Mach3 and modify it all by hand but why? You will need to learn how to operate the screens for loading code and the like but I am guessing its going to be more or less the same for the Acorn.
    Last edited by Bill George; 12-07-2018 at 8:59 PM.
    Retired Guy- Central Iowa. , LightObject 40w CO2 Laser and Chiller, MakerGear M2 3D Printer. Qe60+ Vinyl cutter. Fine Line Automation 4x4 CNC Router- Mach3

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