Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Training with Famous Brady

Just finished up training with Brady Watson of the "Brady Vac II clamping system" fame. Over the past 2 days we made some tweaks to the system, reviewed software, and started cutting some files. Brady was thorough and his background in production was evident.

I'll post some images of our results tomorrow.

Saturday, September 20, 2008


Working on the set-up still.

A head-scratcher we are encountering is that any movement command sent to the 'Bot is expressed at half that amount plus an additional fraction.

If I send 10,10 - it moves to 5.25, 5.25 (almost). If sent to 20,20 it moves to 10.5, 10.5.

I am sending in a tech support request. More later.

UPDATE: Wrong ShopBot control software was installed. Previous model had a different ratio on the control of their stepper motors.

Monday, September 15, 2008

On for Training Next Week

Brady Watson got back to me and confirmed that our training is rescheduled for 9/22 and 9/23.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

I Like Ike.

Sunday afternoon I called our trainer Brady Watson. I have been so busy I have not been a very good host - I was not sure when he was coming into town or told him how to get to the museum.

It turns out that Ike has air travel so screwed up that he can't make it until next week.

This is not a bad thing, as we have some issues with the dust collection and vacuum clamping that need to be taken care of. It will also give us some more time to familiarize ourselves with our new system.

Day 6 Progress - It's Alive!

I did not have time at the end of the day on Friday to proceed to powering up, so I stopped in on Saturday night to give it a spin. Initially I had problems with the computer finding the 'Bot because of a problem with the USB, but I after I loaded up to date software from the web, there was no problem.

I applied the lithium grease to the racks and moved through the X, Y and Z axes using both numerical and keyboard commands. Tested the e-stops.

Nothing caught on fire, which is a plus.

Day 5 Progress

On Friday we got the whole mess wired up - the "e-track" to the Z-axis on the Y gantry...

... everything tied back to the control panel ...

... and the festoon in between. I could be happier with what ShopBot provides for cable management along the X-axis. In the near future I'll probably spring for an decent carrier system like the one along the Y-axis.

I have bigger fish to fry right now - getting the beast running by Monday morning when our trainer arrives.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Day Four Progress

Plywood base and MDF spoilboard installed.

Control box and VFD mounted, power installed. It turns out that there was enough room in the exiting conduit for not only the spindle and controls wiring, but the PC as well. May the sun never set on the glory that is the SNOMNH Facilities Staff. Thanks guys.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Day 3 Progress

X rails are now true - Z axis installed

Our intrepid facilities team Wes and Marlin getting juice to the 'Bot. Can't say enough good things about these guys. Hardest working men in show biz.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Day Two Progess

Y axis gantry in place - still truing up the rails. So far so good.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Installation - Day one

As much as we wanted to get to this first thing Monday morning, we weren't able to start until 3pm. We are on a tight schedule, as our trainer Brady Watson is coming on Monday. We anticipate the power to be on the unit Wednesday afternoon, and we have the computer in hand with the software installed. We hope to surface the table on Friday at the latest.

All said, we felt it was preety good progress for 2 hours of work.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Got 'Bot!

And more importantly:

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

On it's Way!

The 'Bot should be arriving sometime tomorrow - the spot is cleared out, our table materials are in house, and the trainer is scheduled give us some learnin' on 9/15, 16. Pretty sure the wiring is sufficient. Will double check though.