View Full Version : What's best for a Novamill

08-08-2010, 11:25 PM
I recently bought a Novamill on ebay intending to modify it and run Mach3. The machine was made in 1998 and appears immaculate - not so much as faded paintwork. The seller told me that the software was available from Denford and that registration would be "about 100"

How does the denford software compare with Mach3? does the serial interface limit it unacceptably? Does the educational bias of the Denford software get in the way?

Thanks for any input,


John S
08-08-2010, 11:36 PM
Unfortunately you have been told wrong, Denford's will not support private users, however they have their own forum on their website and there are some very helpful people on there. They do this so users can support each other and they don't get hassled
The software may be available and it's probably free.
It will be very dated though, do a search on their form for your model and take a good read.

09-08-2010, 01:01 AM
Hi there Mike, quite a few Novamills have been converted to Mach3 and i've even converted one myself. The process is fairly easy and you'll be very happy with the result. There are quite a few users on here that have converted Denford machines, and i'm sure you'll get a lot of help if you decide to go down that road. As John has mentioned the Denford software route is possible at minimal cost but you'll not get current software that way, and to get current software there's a considerable cost. There is a further option for the Novamill, which is to raise the column to get a bit more room for tooling and work holding. This can be done by adding raising blocks under the column and the only snag is the "y" axis stepper motor is mounted to the column. Thankfully the Denford guys in their wisdom mounted the motor by the lower edge, so the column can be raised and the motor mounted by the upper edge which would give you a 70mm raise to the column. Although this doesn't affect the "z" axis movement of 115mm it will allow you have a reasonable vice, or greater range of tooling.

10-08-2010, 07:48 AM
Will this affect the automatic tool changer? Thank you

10-08-2010, 10:04 AM
you have an atc on the Novamill.?

If it's mounted to the column then it should be fine, if not then it would have to be raised.

10-08-2010, 02:22 PM
Thanks for the info - I was hoping that Mach3 was the answer as I am already familiar with it. Is there any particular place (like build logs etc) where I can short circuit the learning-by-doing process and find out how to go about the conversion?

On the raising of the column, I guess that would entail losing the big perspex cover - rather a shame as it appears to be almost brand new.


10-08-2010, 02:53 PM
You could easily move the pivot points of the cover to compensate for the extra height.