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Joe
11-12-2013, 06:05 PM
I am trying to improve the performance of my mach 3 system machine and after reading the white-paper from Tormach I looked more into the driver test function within mach 3 and how I could improve my PC's performance

I have attached a copy of the Tormach machine control white paper, which talks about the problems with timing variations that cause problems with machine smoothness and step accuracy especially when using high speeds.

The system I am using is a dell optiplex 755 pc
Windows XP 32bit
Intel celeron CPU 430 @ 1.80GHz
2 GB of Ram
80 GB hard drive

As you can see in the attached picture there is a max variation of between 11-12 us all the time and there is a distinct pattern to the graph which looks like some form of pulse. This shape graph is the same for all kernel speeds and I basically want to try and reduce this to around 3-5 us if at all possible.

I have tried 2 processors, the current one and also a intel core duo 2.20GHz and both came out with the exact same pulse on the graph. I have replaced the power supply as I thought it may be a smoothness issue there and that made no difference. I have tried 1GB of ram instead of 2 and that also made no difference. I have tried ending all the unnecessary windows processes but that made no difference.

I am wondering where to go from here? Is there anything else that may be an obvious thing to try and change or replace or is this something that is contained within the system that I can not fix? My next plan was to scope the power supply under load to see if there is anything to be seen there.

Joe

EddyCurrent
11-12-2013, 09:17 PM
I could not be bothered messing about with printer ports and old PC's so I got one of these Amadeal Ltd. Parts & Accessories (http://www.amadeal.co.uk/acatalog/Parts___Accessories.html)
The ethernet model, it works great. Because it's ethernet I can also use the USB ports for other things like a wireless pendant and there is no interference or contention between the two.
There are other similar solutions too.

Joe
12-12-2013, 02:06 PM
Hi Eddy

Yes I have thought about going down the smooth stepper path and that is something I am probably going to do but seen as I am short of funds at the moment I was wondering if there is anything else I could do with my current PC.

Thanks anyway :smile:

EddyCurrent
12-12-2013, 08:16 PM
This was another solution, cheaper.
UC100 CNC machine motion controller | eBay (http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/UC100-CNC-machine-motion-controller-/321259422562?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_205&hash=item4acc8dc362)

Have you read this ?
http://www.mycncuk.com/forums/computer-hardware/6716-minimum-pc-requirements.html

I know you tried stopping windows services but there are some great guides here for bare bones tweaking.
ยป Service Configurations (http://www.blackviper.com/service-configurations/)

I've never tried running drivertest before but I just had a go on the Dell Dimension C521 I'm using and unlike your screenshot the 'trace' looked very clean.

I'm wondering if there is EMC interference from your spindle VFD ? is there an internal filter ?

JAZZCNC
12-12-2013, 09:20 PM
I wouldn't waste any time on the PC to get it better has it's the PP that's the bottle neck and other than replacing this then your stuffed.

The PP is pain in the arse and the difference between External motion control card is night and day. Everything improves, speed, smoothness, reliability.



Now if your stuck and can't work or just want to see the difference then I can lend you a USB Smoother stepper to try.! . . . .But first what are you trying to improve.? Or should say what is Mach not doing that you would like it to do.?


If your chasing speed then often it's not Mach or the Kernal speed that's restricting the machine it's something else like running drives/motors with Low voltage or high pitch screws.
Give us some idea Why or what your trying to achieve and the Spec and setup of the machine.


EDIT: LEE can't insert blank lines all the text is bunching together.? . . . Is something wrong.

EddyCurrent
12-12-2013, 09:38 PM
EDIT: LEE can't insert blank lines all the text is bunching together.? . . . Is something wrong.

There's been a few subtle changes to the forum just now

JAZZCNC
12-12-2013, 09:50 PM
There's been a few subtle changes to the forum just now

Like what.?

EddyCurrent
12-12-2013, 10:05 PM
e.g.
The little green dot next to your handle that shows if you are on-line
'Thanks' and 'thanked' numbers

JAZZCNC
12-12-2013, 10:28 PM
e.g.
The little green dot next to your handle that shows if you are on-line
'Thanks' and 'thanked' numbers

Ah ah ye it says I'm a "Jewel in the Rough" . . . . . Should say "Rough Arsed B@#%rd". . .Lol

Joe
12-12-2013, 10:32 PM
Thanks for the reply's

I think I am set on getting a smooth stepper, they are so much better than a PP your right

but I was just wondering if there was any simple fixes that would improve my PC in the mean time but I think I am at the end of the road with this one

Jazz thank you for this kind offer, I am just trying to get things ready for a new machine I am building so there is no rush at the moment but thanks a lot.

A little bit about the machine: Rm1605 ball screws with direct drive

Wantai DQ890MA stepper drives (http://www.wantmotor.com/ProductsView.asp?id=271&pid=82) running at 72V

Nema 23 motors (http://cnc4you.co.uk/resources/60BYGH301B.PDF)

I am basically trying to get the best speed and accuracy I can from this configuration so I think a smooth stepper will be a good addition

Joe

EddyCurrent
12-12-2013, 10:33 PM
They were already there before.

It says I'm on a "distinguished road" but I've just looked outside it's more like a farm track.

JAZZCNC
12-12-2013, 11:43 PM
I am basically trying to get the best speed and accuracy I can from this configuration so I think a smooth stepper will be a good addition

Joe

Ok Well can I just say that don't waste time trying to chase speed too much has it's not really necessary for most work you'll do with a 5mm pitch screw.
With that setup of 72V and half decent drives at a sensible micro stepping then Mach at 35Khz will give all the speed you require for most work within the 5mm pitch range of working. Really if your wanting higher feeds than this you have the wrong pitch screw.

Accuracy comes more from attention to detail and build quality than it does components, whether that be mechanical or electrical. Repeatability and smoothness comes more from Components.

The SS does help with Smoothness and reliability but with a 5mm pitch then any speed gain would be wasted has the screw will become the limiting factor.

m_c
13-12-2013, 12:26 AM
There's been a few subtle changes to the forum just now

The lack of blank lines has been an issue for a while, but only with IE. There's an issue with the site's CSS, but Lee's done nothing about it.

JAZZCNC
13-12-2013, 01:18 AM
The lack of blank lines has been an issue for a while, but only with IE. There's an issue with the site's CSS, but Lee's done nothing about it.

Ah that explains why.!! . . .My Laptop just expired and I haven't installed Firefox on this new one yet so using IE. It's already doing my head in so it's days are numbered.. . Lol

Clive S
13-12-2013, 07:51 PM
I see that the join date etc has disappeared from the forum now:hysterical:

Picengraver
15-12-2013, 10:53 AM
Joe,
I use Dell Optiplex 750 (?) computers with no problems. You might try the optimization steps provided by ArtSoft in this document. ftp://machsupport.com/Extra%20Information/XP%20Optimization%20Guide.txt

I hope it helps.
John Champlain