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  1. #1
    I just bought a CNCEST 3040T 4 Axis CNC machine with the VFD 800w motor.

    Set it all up and all of a sudden the Z drive stopped working after initially working. I swapped the Y and Z on the back of the controller and the Z drive works under the Y axis so it is not the stepper motor of the Z axis

    I've uninstalled MACH 3, removed the MACH 3 folder and re-installed but still the Z drive does not function.

    While I await the seller to contact regarding the issue I'm pondering fixing this and making it better at the same time rather than a return.

    Anyone have any ideas what the issue could be?

  2. #2
    JAZZCNC's Avatar
    Lives in wakefield, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 16 Hours Ago Forum Superstar, has done so much to help others, they deserve a medal. Has been a member for 8-9 years. Has a total post count of 6,691. Received thanks 1,111 times, giving thanks to others 61 times.
    It sounds very much like a drive is dead. Without seeing inside control box can't say much more than this really. Hopefully, it will have separate drives and not multiaxis card.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by JAZZCNC View Post
    It sounds very much like a drive is dead. Without seeing inside control box can't say much more than this really. Hopefully, it will have separate drives and not multiaxis card.
    @JAZZCNC Thanks for your quick reply. I'm tempted to just bite the bullet and open the control unit up have a look and try to repair myself. There seems to be no way of contacting the supplier, I could return to Amazon but from what I have been reading I'm considering sticking with it and improving the system.

    Seen lots of articles about interference etc. from VFD and poorly cabled internal control units with shielded cables internally. Given it is a VFD motor what would be my options to replace the controller. I don't even mind managing the spindle speed manually but even that seems impossible without MACH 3.

  4. #4
    JAZZCNC's Avatar
    Lives in wakefield, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 16 Hours Ago Forum Superstar, has done so much to help others, they deserve a medal. Has been a member for 8-9 years. Has a total post count of 6,691. Received thanks 1,111 times, giving thanks to others 61 times.
    Quote Originally Posted by davitc View Post
    @JAZZCNC Thanks for your quick reply. I'm tempted to just bite the bullet and open the control unit up have a look and try to repair myself. There seems to be no way of contacting the supplier, I could return to Amazon but from what I have been reading I'm considering sticking with it and improving the system.

    Seen lots of articles about interference etc. from VFD and poorly cabled internal control units with shielded cables internally. Given it is a VFD motor what would be my options to replace the controller. I don't even mind managing the spindle speed manually but even that seems impossible without MACH 3.
    The problem with these Chinese machines is they are like a box of chocolates.? Never know what going to get.!
    I've had plenty of encounters with them and my experience is the only way to improve them is to start again. So if you are prepared to waste money then carry on and open it up.

    The only part the VFD plays in choice of controller is if you want to control speed thru software then it will need to have some way to Output Speed control voltage or current.
    However the term "Controller" usually refers to an external motion controller that handles all the I/O etc(input/outputs). Mach3 by default uses the parallel port for all I/O and doesn't provide the option for speed control. So speed control is usually done by an external source, often by the breakout board which is used to make I/O connections to the Parallel port easier and safer.
    So if you are connecting to the PC via parallel port then highly likely you are just connecting to a breakout board. If your using USB or Ethernet then there will be an external Motion controller being used and this deals with all the I/O and voltage for speed control on VFD.

    Regards the VFD and controlling speed then you don't need Mach3 at all. To turn it back to manual operation it will be a few simple parameter changes. Now the problem could come from getting info on the VFD and it's list of parameters.

    All this said there are many other setups they could use and without seeing what you have it's hard to be specific to what you need.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by JAZZCNC View Post
    The problem with these Chinese machines is they are like a box of chocolates.? Never know what going to get.!
    I've had plenty of encounters with them and my experience is the only way to improve them is to start again. So if you are prepared to waste money then carry on and open it up.

    The only part the VFD plays in choice of controller is if you want to control speed thru software then it will need to have some way to Output Speed control voltage or current.
    However the term "Controller" usually refers to an external motion controller that handles all the I/O etc(input/outputs). Mach3 by default uses the parallel port for all I/O and doesn't provide the option for speed control. So speed control is usually done by an external source, often by the breakout board which is used to make I/O connections to the Parallel port easier and safer.
    So if you are connecting to the PC via parallel port then highly likely you are just connecting to a breakout board. If your using USB or Ethernet then there will be an external Motion controller being used and this deals with all the I/O and voltage for speed control on VFD.

    Regards the VFD and controlling speed then you don't need Mach3 at all. To turn it back to manual operation it will be a few simple parameter changes. Now the problem could come from getting info on the VFD and it's list of parameters.

    All this said there are many other setups they could use and without seeing what you have it's hard to be specific to what you need.
    Lol, A bit of progress. I opened the controller box up and there are 4 drive boards, I have the 4 axis version (see photos of inside). I have a bit of common sense and did not touch anything as the unit was powered on at 240v at the time. Don't try this at home

    The board for the Z drive had 3 leds one green the other red both aluminated. where as the other drive boards just had green leds illuminated.

    Attached photos.

    Anyway I POWERED OFF AND DISCONNECTED THE MAINS then swapped the connections between the A and the Z and now the Z axis is functional. On the board is TX14207 which I'm assuming I can source. Does not appear to be anything wrong with the board apart from the red LEDs. The top right Red Led on it's on has en near it does that stand for encoder? I did notice that when I moved the Z axis MACH 3 showed the Z axis moving even though it wasn't on the faulty drive board.

    It is a USB controller. I have one old PC that has a parallel port but currently I am testing with Windows 10 laptop and all seems good. Not my long term plan and will be sourcing a Windows 7 mini PC of some description to run MACH 3.

    Once I source the board do I need to do anything else, indeed if I can just use the A Axis drive board at least I can play a bit more. But still a bit wary why it failed in the first place. The Z drive is quite free in movement.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by davitc; 13-12-2019 at 11:20 PM.

  6. #6
    Doddy's Avatar
    Lives in Preston, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 7 Hours Ago Has been a member for 6-7 years. Has a total post count of 589. Received thanks 101 times, giving thanks to others 21 times.
    EN = Enable, ironically if you drive this input you disable the drive. Normally left unconnected.

    That driver board looks like a generic stepper driver that's not been cased. You can replace with a generic stepper driver of similar spec. Use the A-axis driver for the Z for now but you might want to change the current drive (dip switches) to the same as the old Z driver.

    Sometimes Electronics fail, google bathtub curve. Especially cheap Chinese.

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  8. #7
    davitc,
    The toshiba TB6560 is a very common analogue stepper driver chip. You can buy a new board based around it on eBay for about the price of a pint. Put 'TB6560 stepper' into eBay and you'll be offered millions of them in a handful of different shapes. Upgrading to digital drives, even the least expensive ones from, say Stepperonline) in the future will make your motors run more smoothly and quietly and at a lower temperature.

    Kit
    Engineering is the art of doing for ten shillings what any fool can do for a pound.
    Wellington.

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  10. #8
    Don’t panic. The photos are a great help. The top photo is the VFD motor controller with 240V main input and just below it 3 outputs going to the spindle motor (usually called UVW). The green terminals along the top are controlling the forward reverse and speed. If it comes to it you can rig something up independently so don’t worry about options on that one. Signals are either a simple switch between 2 terminals or a 0-10V supply for speed, so don’t need to make big decisions on other items just to get VFD working.

    Also good news to see separate drivers. That TB6560 is common and cheap. I would send a photo of all the lights on green except the red one on the faulty driver to the seller and just say you just need a new stepper driver sending over. It might be cheaper for them to do that and get you on your way.
    Building a CNC machine to make a better one since 2010 . . .
    MK1 (1st photo), MK2, MK3, MK4

  11. #9
    Not had much luck contacting the seller as yet. Found a replacement from USA for about $30 including shipping and ordered.

    If I went for upgrade to Digital drive boards what are the options or specs I would need to look for?

  12. #10
    The replacement Stepper Driver arrived yesterday so I am back to 4 axis again :-) . Found one on ebay.

    I do notice that the stepper motor (used on the A axis rotary) is very notchy at low feed rate, even to the point where it does not make a 360 degree revolution, say at G1 F2000 but at G1 F4000 it is fine. Is this down to the poor torque of the stepper or could it be just some tightness in the A Axis unit somewhere. There are a number of dip switches on the TX14207 anyone got any further info into what these do?

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