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View Full Version : Boxford A3 HSRi Axis overtravel and spindle overheating - help!



Tom Aylwin
27-05-2015, 03:26 PM
Hi I have a Boxford A3HSRi which keeps diving into the work and aborting saying "Axis overtravel, machine requested to move to x= 123...

I have also noticed the spindle collet and casing getting hot - nearly too hot to touch. The spindle clamp and gantry get warm but not hot.

Boxford say its a motherboard issue. 1500 to replace so thought I'd see if anyone had experience of this before I spend money!!

Ant comments gladly received!

Many thanks

Tom

Boyan Silyavski
27-05-2015, 06:30 PM
1500??? No way. In worst case scenario that could be a great opportunity to change the control board with something like CSMIO/IP-M (http://www.zappautomation.co.uk/electrical-products/cnc-motion-controllers-18/motion-controllers-from-cs-labs/csmio-ip-m-4-axis-ethernet-motion-controller-step-dir.html)

Tom Aylwin
27-05-2015, 07:56 PM
1500??? No way. In worst case scenario that could be a great opportunity to change the control board with something like CSMIO/IP-M (http://www.zappautomation.co.uk/electrical-products/cnc-motion-controllers-18/motion-controllers-from-cs-labs/csmio-ip-m-4-axis-ethernet-motion-controller-step-dir.html)

Thanks for the reply Silyavski. That sounds amazing. I haven't a clue how to fit that to a Boxford machine! Does it just plug in somewhere? Will it work with Boxford steppers and software??
I'm a complete novice at this so any help hugely appreciated.

Boyan Silyavski
27-05-2015, 08:04 PM
I have no idea whats inside your machine, maybe somebody will help there. But basically you rip out the main board fit the new one inside or make a separate housing, read the manual of the new board, connect the stepper drives to the board, connect limit switches, connect buttons to inputs, map inputs in Mach 3.
You will need Mach3 also. That's the program that most people use for CNC, its inexpensive , has great forum, ...



If nobody knows more details, basically i will help you. You will need to open the machine control box? and take some pictures, of the board, drives and motors.

Tom Aylwin
27-05-2015, 08:29 PM
Are these any use? They are integrated behind the machine.....


http://www.mycncuk.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=15426&stc=1http://www.mycncuk.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=15427&stc=1http://www.mycncuk.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=15428&stc=1

Boyan Silyavski
27-05-2015, 09:50 PM
Now, now, you will need schematics for the machine, but it seems the board with the green lights is the motor drives combined in one board, the one at the right side is the motion control board and the small one should be some termination boards for inputs and out puts.

So at this stage you are pretty sure the board is faulty, right? No way to take it down send to them and they repair for cheap?

If the answer to previous is no, then you need to ask them for the schematics so we see what type of signals it sends to drives, at what voltage and so on, also what else it does and what cables enter and go out from the board. Now somebody experienced with retrofits in your area could figure which is which and what is what very fast.

If they don't send you the schematics the thing to do is see motors name plate, figure motor size, figure at what voltage are driven / transformer output/ rip all out and fit all in one board like that MX3660 (http://www.zappautomation.co.uk/mx3660-three-axis-digital-microstepping-driver.html), its breakout board and 3 drivers integrated. Its LPT compared to the one i said before which is Ethernet but has drives integrated and from all reports is a very nice combo.

Boyan Silyavski
27-05-2015, 09:56 PM
Does the Hf spindle has some control box? where the cable to the spindle is coming from?

Tom Aylwin
27-05-2015, 10:33 PM
All 3 motors have these numbers in common: 190\500ST-MTR

X axis has more info....Y200-2240-0410 AY04. no idea if thats any clearer.
At this point I havent got a picture of the spindle wiring - pos tomorrow.

However it's probably a good idea to either get you over from Spain (!) or find a local engineer. Assuming an engineer will charge minimum 500 + controller 250 + software 150 I just wonder if its all going to get a bit near the cost of a motherboard from Boxford?!

Boyan Silyavski
27-05-2015, 11:04 PM
No such big deal as you think. from all it seems the original board is so expensive, as its separate stand alone motion control.

Ok, at least for now we have the motors identified and know at what V/A could be driven,

HYBRID STEPPING MOTORS HY / HS / HN Series (http://www.denfordata.com/bb/download/file.php?id=2707)


http://www.mycncuk.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=15429&stc=1

Clive S
28-05-2015, 12:16 AM
Hi I have a Boxford A3HSRi which keeps diving into the work and aborting saying "Axis overtravel, machine requested to move to x= 123...

I have also noticed the spindle collet and casing getting hot - nearly too hot to touch. The spindle clamp and gantry get warm but not hot.
Boxford say its a motherboard issue. 1500 to replace so thought I'd see if anyone had experience of this before I spend money!!

Ant comments gladly received!

Many thanks

TomWhy would the gantry and the spindle getting hot have anything to do with the mother board. .. Clive

Tom Aylwin
28-05-2015, 08:03 AM
Why would the gantry and the spindle getting hot have anything to do with the mother board. .. Clive

Hi Clive,
Someone told me perhaps the heat was affecting the grease in the sliding / screw mechanisms - changing its consistency - and causing a momentary stall, hence mother board losing itself??

My instinct is it doesnt get that hot but I'm a woodworker, not a metal engineer!!

Clive S
28-05-2015, 09:40 AM
Hi Clive,
Someone told me perhaps the heat was affecting the grease in the sliding / screw mechanisms - changing its consistency - and causing a momentary stall, hence mother board losing itself??

My instinct is it doesnt get that hot but I'm a woodworker, not a metal engineer!!Ok I personally would not go down the route of changing the MB until I had checked out the mechanics.
You mention that the spindle collet get hot and clamps get warm. Have you tried running the machine without the spindle running (doing fresh air cuts) and then see if the machine loses position?.
.
You really need to give more info and a clear description of the problem you are having. ..Clive

Tom Aylwin
28-05-2015, 09:55 AM
Ok I personally would not go down the route of changing the MB until I had checked out the mechanics.
You mention that the spindle collet get hot and clamps get warm. Have you tried running the machine without the spindle running (doing fresh air cuts) and then see if the machine loses position?.
.
You really need to give more info and a clear description of the problem you are having. ..Clive

Apart from my first post regarding the over-travel message I'm not sure what you need to know.

As it happens I did do a fresh air cut with the same outcome.
The first time when doing a proper cut it aborted but didn't dive into the work. Feed rate was running at 'half' speed.
Second time - the air cut - I ran at full speed (not sure why!); it did the same "Machine error - machine requested to move to x=123...blah" and aborted but this time also dived into the work before coming to a stop.
Is that any help?

Tom Aylwin
28-05-2015, 10:14 AM
Apart from my first post regarding the over-travel message I'm not sure what you need to know.

As it happens I did do a fresh air cut with the same outcome.
The first time when doing a proper cut it aborted but didn't dive into the work. Feed rate was running at 'half' speed.
Second time - the air cut - I ran at full speed (not sure why!); it did the same "Machine error - machine requested to move to x=123...blah" and aborted but this time also dived into the work before coming to a stop.
Is that any help?

Also.... might it be the computer not keeping up?. The machine stalled on pretty flat part of the job so assume the computer wasnt being overloaded but mybe I'm being naive!

Clive S
28-05-2015, 10:15 AM
Did you run it with the spindle off? When you did the air cut you said it dived into the work piece how much higher than the work was it? Did the spindle get hot? Do you hear any abnormal noise? ..Clive

Tom Aylwin
28-05-2015, 10:17 AM
Did you run it with the spindle off? When you did the air cut you said it dived into the work piece how much higher than the work was it? Did the spindle get hot? Do you hear any abnormal noise? ..Clive

Any chance I could give you a call or vice versa?... my number is 07854774881

Tom Aylwin
28-05-2015, 03:21 PM
Any chance I could give you a call or vice versa?... my number is 07854774881

Have just run the same project on an air cut. It hasnt finished but its nearly there - about 30 mins off which is closer than on a real cut buy a couple of hours.
I have noticed the x axis stepper motor is really hot - too hot to touch - is that right?

Tom Aylwin
28-05-2015, 06:36 PM
Have just run the same project on an air cut. It hasnt finished but its nearly there - about 30 mins off which is closer than on a real cut buy a couple of hours.
I have noticed the x axis stepper motor is really hot - too hot to touch - is that right?

That stepper motor also sounded a bit rough

JAZZCNC
28-05-2015, 11:41 PM
Tom sounds like you have a few issues going on here. I can help but it will mean you trying one thing at a time giving clear replys to my questions and not going off at tangents.

Has this machine ever worked correctly while in you owned it. Or have you bought it like this.?

Can you run the spindle without CNC side being turned ON so we can identify if the spindle is getting hot and transfering heat to machine.
I don't see any speed controller inside the Control box you showed so I'm presuming the spindle has manual speed control or fixed speed.! Which is it.?
OR is there another board or electronics your not showing.?

Need you to CUT air WITHOUT the spindle running and at the normal feedrate. But I want you to NOT turn on power to the machine until last minute. Then quickly load program and start cutting air.
Take a note of the Stepper temps and check at intervals while cutting air to see if they get hot. And how long before they do. It's not unusual for steppers to get hot while stood at rest so this is why I need you to start from cold and check temps.
While cutting they should be just above warm to mildly hot, and when at stand still for ten to fifteen minutes be like holding a cup of tea or coffee after minute or so off boil.!! . . They shouldn't burn.

Try this and let me know.!

Tom Aylwin
29-05-2015, 09:55 AM
Tom sounds like you have a few issues going on here. I can help but it will mean you trying one thing at a time giving clear replys to my questions and not going off at tangents.

Has this machine ever worked correctly while in you owned it. Or have you bought it like this.?

Can you run the spindle without CNC side being turned ON so we can identify if the spindle is getting hot and transfering heat to machine.
I don't see any speed controller inside the Control box you showed so I'm presuming the spindle has manual speed control or fixed speed.! Which is it.?
OR is there another board or electronics your not showing.?

Need you to CUT air WITHOUT the spindle running and at the normal feedrate. But I want you to NOT turn on power to the machine until last minute. Then quickly load program and start cutting air.
Take a note of the Stepper temps and check at intervals while cutting air to see if they get hot. And how long before they do. It's not unusual for steppers to get hot while stood at rest so this is why I need you to start from cold and check temps.
While cutting they should be just above warm to mildly hot, and when at stand still for ten to fifteen minutes be like holding a cup of tea or coffee after minute or so off boil.!! . . They shouldn't burn.

Try this and let me know.!


Hi JAZZCNC,
thank you for your reply.

I think this is the only other pic I have so including the previous - thats the guts of it.

http://www.mycncuk.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=15433&stc=1

Pretty sure its fixed speed spindle.

I will do the actions you describe today.
Assuming normal feed rate is the optimum one for the cutter and material (3.2mm dia bullnose, oak) therefore full feed rate??

For the record - Machine history:

Bought machine with video knowledge of axes moving manually and spindle turning on and off.
Having received it, on switching the power to the machine and pressing the homing button it lifted in the z axis, got to its limit, made a horrible noise (groaning) and didnt home.

On advice from Boxford I 'flashed' the [electronics] with the relevant program and that cured its homing issue. I still have to do this from time to time but have a suspicion the z axis proximity switch may be faulty.

From there I tried a few cuts at full feed rate and each time the machine aborted half way through having 'over-travelled'. What is slightly odd is that it looked as though the machine had lost its memory for a minute, dived into the work, come out again and carried on as it should..and then come to a premature stop!! Boxford were adamant this was impossible!

Since then I have made 8 successful pieces (landscape relief work) each taking about 6 hours - MACHINE RUNNING AT HALF FEED RATE (again on advice from Boxford)

Spindle collet always got very hot at full feed speed, less so at half feed speed (which allowed me to cut those 8 pieces). Now getting hot which ever feed rate.

2 days ago.... tried a cut at half speed. Did the first tool change and then it aborted half way through that finishing stage. Spindle collet and housing hot.

then...... after letting everything cool, (still on half speed) started from that same tool and let it follow the already cut second stage - ie cutting air until reaching where it left off - but it aborted before it got there. Spindle hot.

Yesterday, ran same program with spindle off and no material in place. It finished the job. Noticed how the x axis stepper motor got too hot to touch.

JAZZCNC
29-05-2015, 10:56 AM
Ok well sounds to me like this machine always had some issues because you shouldn't need to be Flashing anything, leave that to Old buggers Like Clive S. . :joker:

Homing is a simple procedure and mostly involves watching for a Input signal from the Home switch so shouldn't need any software flashes or updates as it's mostly electro mechanical.!!
So if your having to re-install software this indicates it's PC related or the Bespoke Hardware/software used. The switch can't cause the Software to need flashing. The switch will just work or it won't, possible chance of intermitant working but still all the same it won't affect Software.
The Bespoke boxford Hardware on the other hand if faulty could affect software and also Ignore the switch so I'd be suspicous of this more than the switch.!

The spindle getting so hot you can't touch the collet suggests to me that it's possible on it's way out.!! . . . Could be Fan is broken or it's so bunged up with crude it's not cooling correctly but that would be obvious so doubt it.(but check) More likely it's worn bearings and friction or possibley electrical.!
If it's fixed speed then cutting at lower feed rate wouldn't make a huge difference to the heat.

The machine losing it's way can be caused by many things. Heat is one of them..? . . . If the heat is so much then it could be causing mechanical parts to bind but not so much it stalls the machine but just enough to cause lost steps and over time lost position.
I very much doubt the spindle is causing so much heat it directly transfers into the steppers so it won't be that.!. . Chances are this is a mixture of several things working together.?

First with all the Flashing going off I suspect some settings have been lost and the drives are not set correctly for the motors. Or the Hardware is set wrong on it's switches. This will cause the Motors to get Very hot if current settings are wrong.

The Heat from the spindle is building up inside the enclosure transfering to mechanical parts. This could be causing some excess mechanical binding and friction.
The frame it's self will also heat up and this houses the electronics so excess heat could be affecting electrical Hardware. Excess heat in the cabinet will also affect the steppers badly if their current is set wrong.

So I think you have a machine that is over heating.!! . . . BUT what is causing the Heat could be a mixture of few things.

Tom Aylwin
29-05-2015, 11:40 AM
Ok well sounds to me like this machine always had some issues because you shouldn't need to be Flashing anything, leave that to Old buggers Like Clive S. . :joker:

Homing is a simple procedure and mostly involves watching for a Input signal from the Home switch so shouldn't need any software flashes or updates as it's mostly electro mechanical.!!
So if your having to re-install software this indicates it's PC related or the Bespoke Hardware/software used. The switch can't cause the Software to need flashing. The switch will just work or it won't, possible chance of intermitant working but still all the same it won't affect Software.
The Bespoke boxford Hardware on the other hand if faulty could affect software and also Ignore the switch so I'd be suspicous of this more than the switch.!

The spindle getting so hot you can't touch the collet suggests to me that it's possible on it's way out.!! . . . Could be Fan is broken or it's so bunged up with crude it's not cooling correctly but that would be obvious so doubt it.(but check) More likely it's worn bearings and friction or possibley electrical.!
If it's fixed speed then cutting at lower feed rate wouldn't make a huge difference to the heat.

The machine losing it's way can be caused by many things. Heat is one of them..? . . . If the heat is so much then it could be causing mechanical parts to bind but not so much it stalls the machine but just enough to cause lost steps and over time lost position.
I very much doubt the spindle is causing so much heat it directly transfers into the steppers so it won't be that.!. . Chances are this is a mixture of several things working together.?

First with all the Flashing going off I suspect some settings have been lost and the drives are not set correctly for the motors. Or the Hardware is set wrong on it's switches. This will cause the Motors to get Very hot if current settings are wrong.

The Heat from the spindle is building up inside the enclosure transfering to mechanical parts. This could be causing some excess mechanical binding and friction.
The frame it's self will also heat up and this houses the electronics so excess heat could be affecting electrical Hardware. Excess heat in the cabinet will also affect the steppers badly if their current is set wrong.

So I think you have a machine that is over heating.!! . . . BUT what is causing the Heat could be a mixture of few things.


Wow thanks so much for your time!

So far today.... spindle only.....warm after 15 mins, about 80 deg C or 'cup of tea too hot to hold' after an hour. Collar holding the spindle - after an hour- like a perfect temp cuppa and the rest of the gantry a bit warm.
I have ordered a new spindle as a starter.

I will test the stepper temperature next. Am I right in thinking the stepper motors v rarely go wrong?

JAZZCNC
29-05-2015, 12:30 PM
I have ordered a new spindle as a starter.


Wow Lad slow down.!! . . . I wouldn't go buying anything new yet. I certainly wouldn't replace it with original type spindle as there are far better and probably cheaper options.

Yes Steppers motors them selfs V fairly go wrong. It's the electronics they connect to that go wrong mostly.
To be honest I don't think you have a board going faulty I think your machine is setup all wrong. Either thru software or more likely on the boards it's self.

I certainly wouldn't be replacing any original boards for new ones. Like as been suggested you'll be much better replacing with new modern electronics.
This will free the machine of the restrictions placed on it by overpriced under performing Hardware/software Boxford force on you. When converted with modern drives these machines perform like the Old hardware could only dream about.!!