View Full Version : NEW MEMBER: back again..... new member

28-11-2013, 09:51 PM
Hello Guys,
I am in real need of help.... I was thinking of getting help to buy a new cnc machine!!!! but the hefty price has put me off big time:numbness: So now i find myself back on this wonderful site... i have a old cnc machine that has been partly restored... but it has been left sat in workshop for over three years... i need to get the machine working... any tips and advise will be very grateful guys.. I would really appreciate any help. The machine i have has a nee amc controller the bed size is 8 x 5 and it was made by STD?

I have been told by a well wisher to take off air rams to the two spindles... and change to newer stepper motors? and not forgetting to get a new water cooled spindle..... and the old machine will be better then a new one?

Honestly i am in a real dilemma i cant honestly afford a new one... and have a really good machine which i have never seen work :dispirited: I would like any tips and advice if upgrading is the best option.

thanks in advance :thumsup:
sorry for a long post

28-11-2013, 10:06 PM
To be honest you are not making a lot of sense but here's a thread regarding nee amc

28-11-2013, 10:10 PM
sorry . I have a table cnc router machine that i would like to upgrade.. i have just added pictures to my profile..

28-11-2013, 10:17 PM
Ok start by posting some really good quality pictures of the machine and esp the Electrical side of things. Like inside the Control box and motors etc.

Does the Control still work and do you have the software needed for it.? . . . If not then chances are you'll save your self some heart ache and Cash by converting the control to use Mach3 or Linux CNC.

Depending on what Electronics are on the machine then it could be simple conversion just requiring simple hardware like breakout board.? On the other hand if it has proprietary hardware then it could need it's guts ripping out and full refit. Thats said that's not the end of the world and will still cost less than half most commercial controllers and replacement proprietary hardware costs.

Start with GOOD pictures and we'll see from there.!!

28-11-2013, 10:25 PM
here are the pictures that i took earlier:apthy:108871088810889108901089110892108931 0894

28-11-2013, 10:35 PM
Machine looks a beast, if the spindles work I can't see why you would want to change them. I can see a screw on the Z axis so what exactly are the air cylinders doing ?

28-11-2013, 10:50 PM
Thanks Eddy... like i said before this is kinda new to me... the air rams lift the spindles to the datum? the gantry (i think that is what it is called) has a 200mm drop for cutting i think? everything comes on but cant get the spindle on? someone came to the workshop today and advised it would be best to upgrade the spindles and the stepper motors and put new drivers to the machine and this will be better then buying a new one any day? i am new to all this and am willing to learn. Thanks

28-11-2013, 10:59 PM
Okay, imagine you strip the machine back to the mechanical items and replace the electronics, that would be the easiest option but maybe not the cheapest. The stepper motors themselves look okay according to the photos. How are the spindles controlled ? is there a variable speed drive or are they just on and off ?

28-11-2013, 11:34 PM
Ok well thats a start but still need more info and pictures.

Need to know exactly what's happening regards it working and what it does or doesn't do. Does the Control come on and do anything.? If not are there any Error messages.?
Need pictures of inside the Control box.

The air cyclinders will be for plunge drilling and each head independent to each other. One spindle will be for cutting the other for drilling. This what those Sticker strips refer to, they are the offsets from each head.

Can't really help any more with out more info and better pics of the internals. . . .BUT I wouldn't go ripping stuff out just yet.

29-11-2013, 07:02 PM
Hi, before removing the air cylinders you should find out their original function, they may be working as some kind of counter balance or lift assist for the Z axis. do you rally need two spindles, you may be able to increase the Y travel if you remove one of them. I think your controller is an AMC 3 stepper controller end they do work very well (I have one).
good luck with your conversion . G.

29-11-2013, 07:14 PM
Hi, before removing the air cylinders you should find out their original function, they may be working as some kind of counter balance or lift assist for the Z axis.

Don't think so Geoff pretty sure they are for plunge drilling. If you look close you can see 3 sets of linear rails, each spindle has it's own back plate and each connected to a cylinder and 1 wide rail each and the Whole Z axis has another set of rails that move both together.
Also the Left Drilling spindle is fixed but the right can be offset using the Slots in the back plate, the Bar running horizontal acts has a register.

29-11-2013, 07:43 PM
Thanks Jazz, I am sure that you are right about the air cylinders being used for drilling, but could not see what disconnected them from the leadscrew. I had seen that the spacing between the spindles was adjustable. It does look like it will be a nice project and will make a nice woodworking route. G.

29-11-2013, 10:14 PM
Hi Guys... I have taken more pictures today of the machine including the inverters and the wiring of the box. I have tried to take pics of the datum process were the machine homes itself! it does everything no problem ... I am stuck at the next part on what to do? I don't have any idea on why it has the air rams but does seem to help the z axis.109041090510906109071090810909109101091110912 109131091410915

29-11-2013, 11:37 PM
The AMC controller has the stepper drives inside. As the machine datums on all 3 axes I think that the machine and controller are working ok. You should be able to jog the axes with the arrows on the left. Pressing the alt button at the same time as the up/down arrow will move the Z axis. I think the large inverter is the spindle driver and it is possible that this is operated via one of the output buttons. As the controller seems to operate the machine it is probably configured to suit.If you jog the machine, you should be able to measure the distance travelled and check that against the the readout for each axis. It is obvious that some of the wiring on the machine needs tidying/sorting. I think that Jazz is probably right about the air cylinders being for plunge drilling, something that you probably do not need at present, but I do not see the need to remove them. It is possible that the machine may expect to see some air pressure. You will need to a post processor to suit and input a G-code program to run the machine, but from what you have said I do not think that you will have too much trouble to get it sorted. The link that Eddy gave you for AMC is helpful, but you may struggle to find a copy of WINAMC as it is now obsolete, But I think "Burny" offer an updated version under a different name. I think you do have a great project and would need to spend a lot of money to buy something similar that is up and running. G.

02-12-2013, 11:04 AM
Hi Guys... Sorry for late reply have had a hectic couple of days.. Now back on to the mission. So far i have to admit you guys have been great. I need to get the spindle working? at the moment it does not turn on? how can i fault find? the cable has been replaced? by me:nightmare:
I would like some advice on the fault finding.... then have to look at the vac bed and not forgetting i really need to add a dust extractor to the spindle... i am looking forward to your replies and help...
If any one is near to Slough jus pop in tea, coffee :welcoming:

02-12-2013, 12:17 PM
No1 check for juice, is there power to the inverter ?, is it a 3 phase inverter but you only have single phase to it ?
If there is power then find out how to put it into 'local' mode so it can be controlled from the front panel, this should eliminate any software issues.

02-12-2013, 03:50 PM
The spindle and vac pump may be switched in the program by the controller, but they could also be be switched
from the front panel using the output 1 & 2 buttons. The output buttons can be programmed to switch auxiliary functions. G.

02-12-2013, 04:15 PM
Hi Eddy thanks so far : ) The machine is 3 phase.. have the 3 phase power all ready and working... only issue is dont know what to check on the inverter? I am good hands on but there are no diagrams or anything to hand?:frown:

02-12-2013, 04:18 PM
Hi Geoffrey, I have tried the output switches nothing happens.. no vac pump connected yet or extraction unit:nonchalance:

02-12-2013, 04:50 PM
Hi Eddy thanks so far : ) The machine is 3 phase.. have the 3 phase power all ready and working... only issue is dont know what to check on the inverter? I am good hands on but there are no diagrams or anything to hand?:frown:

It's SKF but can't see the model number, ideally you need to find a manual on the internet or if someone has one to hand or if you could contact SKF for one.