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cncezee
10-12-2011, 10:01 PM
Hi I am now the proud owner of a newing hall Millgrav, an older model but in beautiful condition, my question is about the controller and setting up, as there is no instructions to show how to use one of these machines, is there anyone out there in cnc land who may have some written instructions that they might want to share???

John S
11-12-2011, 12:19 AM
Sorry can't help but I have recently picked a fulling working Roland engraver up from a school, came with all software and book but to be honest it was that old fashioned. You had to jump through nested menus upon nested menus that I never even bothered plugging it in and ripped the dedicated boards out of it and will fit a combined Chinese 3 axis board which will be fine for such a small machine as this.

My reasoning behind this is that all the other home shop machines are on Mach and I don't want to learn another program, plus files will be interchangable between the router and this engraver if size allows.

Jonathan
11-12-2011, 12:53 PM
You could try this method:

http://xkcd.com/627/

:whistling:

School had a Roland PNC2300A, but after I'd gone the stepper driver (as you described - lots of menus) broke, so they just dismantled it for parts ... such a waste as it could easily have ran from a cheap Chinese board and mach3. Was a very useful machine ... my friend even cut Titanium on it!

John S
11-12-2011, 03:20 PM
That's the one I have Jonathan, the 2300A, also picked up the matching mill, a PNC3100, jogs but won't run a program.

That's going the same way, gut and transplant, waiting for a batch of driver boards from china.

Jonathan
11-12-2011, 03:30 PM
That's the one I have Jonathan, the 2300A

What program have you tried to run it? We ran it just via Techsoft 2D Design V2. You just drew the part, drew contours for the toolpath and assigned different tools and depths to different colour lines. Then just print to the 2300.. I thought it was quite good since as you're actually drawing the toolpaths you have full control, easy to use system (though hard to do anything other than 2.5D).

(any news on those rails?)

John S
11-12-2011, 04:14 PM
Didn't try to run it but Vectric do a driver for it so presume it just sent it out a bit like HPGL via a printer driver.
Came with all leads etc but as I say I don't want an orphan program.

Heading out there to measure up / photograph etc, email me your email address, don't think I have it.

Pars
03-04-2012, 12:12 AM
Hi just found your post on a random google search, did you get anywhere with this? I spent about 10 years programing and running this machine so should be able to help you. You state the old model I take it the machine is fitted with the older style square white control unit not the apex model? Have just registered on here so drop me a line if I can help in anyway I will.

If you do have the old control unit you can only program basic commands via G-codes for general milling purposes, if you wish to use it as an engraving machine you will need suitable software for your pc, I very much doubt the old newinghall software will be available, plus their dongles cost lots! I will see what information I can dig out on it its been a while.

Mill Grav Newbie
24-04-2012, 02:29 PM
Hi
I have just joined the group, and hope to learn enough to be able to bring a machine to life.
I started out building a gantry type Engraver/miller using a 4' x 2' surface table as the bed and weldments for the arms and overhead track. collecting endless ballscrews, slides, steppers and obsolete drivers along the way. The engineering evening class closed after a guy released a machine vice onto his foot, so the project was abandonned.
I have bought a Newing Hall Mill Grav machine with the Apex1 controller upgrade, from a local business which closed after 80 years trading. The machine had no software as the firms office had been the victim of an arson attack. I have downloaded the only program available from Newing Hall which appears to be only a job setting out program, they tell me this obsolete machine is no longer supported. I expected to be able to plug the machine into the serial port and at least jog it, no such luck!
Does anyone have any experience or information as to what is needed to have the machine talk to a computer.
I have a demo version of Mach3 but presumeably this would involve bypassing the Apex controller altogether.

Any help would be much appreciated.
Many Thanks


Hi just found your post on a random google search, did you get anywhere with this? I spent about 10 years programing and running this machine so should be able to help you. You state the old model I take it the machine is fitted with the older style square white control unit not the apex model? Have just registered on here so drop me a line if I can help in anyway I will.

If you do have the old control unit you can only program basic commands via G-codes for general milling purposes, if you wish to use it as an engraving machine you will need suitable software for your pc, I very much doubt the old newinghall software will be available, plus their dongles cost lots! I will see what information I can dig out on it its been a while.

Mill Grav Newbie
24-04-2012, 02:31 PM
Hi
Did you make any progress with your MillGrav? I am in much the same situation see my introduction first post (enclosed)

Hi
I have just joined the group, and hope to learn enough to be able to bring a machine to life.
I started out building a gantry type Engraver/miller using a 4' x 2' surface table as the bed and weldments for the arms and overhead track. collecting endless ballscrews, slides, steppers and obsolete drivers along the way. The engineering evening class closed after a guy released a machine vice onto his foot, so the project was abandonned.
I have bought a Newing Hall Mill Grav machine with the Apex1 controller upgrade, from a local business which closed after 80 years trading. The machine had no software as the firms office had been the victim of an arson attack. I have downloaded the only program available from Newing Hall which appears to be only a job setting out program, they tell me this obsolete machine is no longer supported. I expected to be able to plug the machine into the serial port and at least jog it, no such luck!
Does anyone have any experience or information as to what is needed to have the machine talk to a computer.
I have a demo version of Mach3 but presumeably this would involve bypassing the Apex controller altogether.

Any help would be much appreciated.
Many Thanks

Swarfing
24-04-2012, 07:10 PM
Mill Grav

Roger may not see your reply so i will give him a knudge for you

Swarfing
24-04-2012, 07:11 PM
Oh by the way he has changed all of his tronics out for up to date stuff and is running Mach3

cncezee
24-04-2012, 08:37 PM
Hi New Member ( name and address withheld ), i have gutted my machine as i was dismayed how BASIC the controller was, i felt that someone had found my old BBC basic computer and given it back to me to use again!!!
I have so far rebuilt the z axis to use a Chinese water cooled spindle motor and inverter and therefore done away with the belt driven spindle and the very noisy motor mounted top central of the mill grav i have also stripped out all of the original electronics and i am currently building a PC mother board with a smooth stepper to give two IO ports and a serial port to control the inverter, i am intending to use one port to work with a MPG and the other port as limits and over travel switches all of this is to be run under windoz and Mach3 much to 2e0poz's dismay and his attempts for me to run Linux... i am stead fast with this windoz rubbish

So far everything seems to be going to plan ( if i had one ) and i am now wiring and configuring the MB and all of the IO's.
it is possible that i may be able to obtain some software for your apex controller..... but do not hold your breath, the chap i bought my machine from has another with the apex controller and my be willing to run off a copy, but he is an excellent engineer not a software wizz...!!

I think your design building on a large surface table is an excellent idea, but impossible to move is it compleatly cancelled or will it fly again??

Roger

Mill Grav Newbie
25-04-2012, 01:10 AM
Hi Roger
Many Thanks for your reply, I am not fully sure if your machine had the Apex controller which you have removed or had the original electronics in the machine cabinet. I notice Newing Hall show Apex controllers on there current engraving machines but I understand them to be a later model.
Re the "Table" engraver, I will probably keep the table and sell off the other components when I can get the MillGrav running.
One idea I incorporated was to have the surface table long edge skirts machined parallel with a register so they could take ball slides. As a cost saving experiment I machined a flat bottomed 90deg vee groove centrally in a 80 x 20 flat this held a 30 x 30 square rail with the corner removed, held with recessed socked head screws at close centres. Essentially creating a bolt on adjustable vee guide. By shimming the upper and lower faces of the vee groove the rails could be adjusted parallel to the tables surface and to each other. Thats the theory but never put to the task. The gantry "saddle" was to be a machined vee with a 2mm PTFE "gasket" type gib strip. pre loaded again by shimming.

cncezee
25-04-2012, 09:48 PM
Hi New Member ( name withheld ), i have spoke to my friend and he has asked what software you want>> also what controller you have, he describes it by the number of buttons along the top of the front panel. perhaps you can take a photo of it this would help greatly.

Roger

cncezee
25-04-2012, 10:13 PM
my new Z
584458455846584758495848

Mill Grav Newbie
26-04-2012, 02:48 AM
5856




5857

5858
Hi New Member ( name withheld ), i have spoke to my friend and he has asked what software you want>> also what controller you have, he describes it by the number of buttons along the top of the front panel. perhaps you can take a photo of it this would help greatly.

Roger

Hi
This is the Apex controller fitted to my MillGrav any help you can offer would be very much appreciated.

cncezee
07-05-2012, 09:15 PM
Hi New Member

I am sorry to be the bearer of bad news but my friend john has been unable to find any of the software that came with his machine, he informas me that he never used it anyhow as he uses a really weird program called casemate this outputs a hpgl type of language and machines in layers and colours...way too weird for me and this prog is well locked up with dongles

So perhaps you will go a similar rout to me......Wire cutters...................

I have this weekend i have got the MPG ( manual pulse generator ) working and calibrated along with the spindle inverter working under Mach3, i will soon be fitting processing power back into the box on Millgrav..

If you want any tips on how to do this i will be very happy to help

RH

jif
10-09-2012, 12:10 AM
Hi there, Its nice to see a millgrav in good hands there. I worked at Newing-Hall as a fitter for 20 years and in that time I built or worked on just about every millgrav that we made. Its 10 years since the company went under but I think Pantograph Services of Leeds took over the handling of Newing-Halls affairs. I like the new spindle arrangment you have there, the large aluminium pulley on the original motor could sometimes cause trouble with vibration. The millgrav was one of my favourite machines because it did away with the old pantograph which could sometimes be difficult to set up and it was so easy to knock it out of square meaning a service call out to reset it. There were a couple of variations of the millgrav in that one had a solid aluminium plate holding the Y carriage and that had the slots for the ball blocks permanently machined at 90 deg to one another. The other had two aluminium plates on a spigot that allowed the two to swivel. We then had to manually set the plates at 90 deg to each other and dowel them with tapered pins. These machines were sold all over the world, The Jet Propulsion Lab USA (NASA) had one, Australia, South Africa, UK. Anyway, you will have to post some video footage of the machine working when its all up and running.

Ian

Stocky
23-06-2017, 08:12 PM
Hi just found your post on a random google search, did you get anywhere with this? I spent about 10 years programing and running this machine so should be able to help you. You state the old model I take it the machine is fitted with the older style square white control unit not the apex model? Have just registered on here so drop me a line if I can help in anyway I will.

If you do have the old control unit you can only program basic commands via G-codes for general milling purposes, if you wish to use it as an engraving machine you will need suitable software for your pc, I very much doubt the old newinghall software will be available, plus their dongles cost lots! I will see what information I can dig out on it its been a while.
I have spent many hours trying to get information about the Apex Controller which shows only two lines of text at once. What I cannot work out is how one sets up the controller to receive G-code. There are three formats, one being a Windows 'special' which works OK with JLS. However the more modern CNC software outputs G-code. Software purchased from BobCad USA was expensive, and from samples they wrote an interface using the information from Newing Hall which took months, but nobody seems to know how to select G-code for the interface. The Millgrav has new ball screws and is quite a nice machine, but the controller seems to let it down. I wonder if you would remember how to set it up for G-code. Cheers for any info you might have!

Stocky
25-06-2017, 04:42 AM
Hi I am now the proud owner of a newing hall Millgrav, an older model but in beautiful condition, my question is about the controller and setting up, as there is no instructions to show how to use one of these machines, is there anyone out there in cnc land who may have some written instructions that they might want to share???

I am not used to posting stuff, else I would paste the text in, but it appears that is not possible. The filr I wanted to send you is an RTF, so in order to send it I have renamed it with the extension PNG. If you actuall get this you need to copy the file and rename it to an RTF. The file is called JLS_FIRMWARE_INSTALL Good luck!
No sorry, I can not see how to send this RTF, so contact me: - dave@stocky.com.au

Clive S
25-06-2017, 09:09 AM
I am not used to posting stuff, else I would paste the text in, but it appears that is not possible. The filr I wanted to send you is an RTF, so in order to send it I have renamed it with the extension PNG. If you actuall get this you need to copy the file and rename it to an RTF. The file is called JLS_FIRMWARE_INSTALL Good luck!
No sorry, I can not see how to send this RTF, so contact me: - [email]

Stocky Welcome to the forum. I would remove your email because of the spammers out there. Also you do realise that this post is about 5 years old.