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  • charliex 5:50 pm on October 1, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , AccurateCNC 560, PCB milling   

    AccurateCNC 560 / 360 Testing the Tool Test 

    So i struggled with the depth setting, and AccurateCNC software recognised this would be a problem. So far its the best use I’ve found for the camera, noting that I have yet to try the fiducial setup yet and i will be since i cut a PCB last night, and forgot to save the project* , I’d intended to leave it for the morning to do the drilling, and windows update rebooted my machine for me , whoops turn that off that feature on the CNC PC !


    *It’d be nice to have an autosave/autoreload for just such things, it does happen. This is where Chris emails me and says ‘It’s in the manual read it’, which I did last night!


    The tool test is easy to do, put the software in CNC mode, then the follow camera mode, right click on the board where you want it to cut the test, and select ‘tool test’. The software asks you to confirm, then performs a tool change, then returns to the spot where the camera was and cuts the test, finally the camera returns to inspect the cut.


    The manual has excellent details on how to do this, their cut looks better than mine.


    Here are the results :- (Click for larger)


    I’d say this is too shallow, there is a tiny bit of copper bridging on the top left.



    Too deep, removed too much material



    Looks better, i did only just it by one division each time, at half a division it’d be even better.



    This is the one from the manual



    I setup Webcam XP with an auto focus HP webcam so I could check on the machines progress via t’internet. Works on the Jesus phone too.





    I did some more tool tests









  • charliex 5:47 pm on September 30, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , PCB milling, Z home   

    Day two with the AccurateCNC 560 H 


    Once I’d figured out the bit was wrong, the results got a lot better… This board is not routed correctly and had a bunch of warnings but you learn from mistakes right 😉




    this is how i interpret the manual on how to do the Z home depth setup. MSPaint ( well Cosmigo promotion) FTW.




    Day two , night mode

    Attempt a drilling and cutting an actual working board, even though the above PCB to me looks passable, it really isn’t upto the quality that the machine can make, there are a few wiggles and zig/zags etc, but so long as the traces are clean right ? Well wrong, after fiddling with it all day and just getting more comfortable with it , i can say with great certainty that I got the machine working a lot better, the best advice i can give you the reader is, find out what a V bit actually looks like, so when you find you’re using the right bit, you aren’t looking at a bit of paper that got flipped around in the poking about. It doesn’t for instance look like the 18mil drill bit, its a short stubby affair and doesn’t at all look like it’ll cut super fine lines, when in fact it does rather well. So I’ve come to the conclusion the zigzag/wobble is from the longer 18 mil bit swashing around.


    So what does the difference between a board cut with the 18 mil drill bit vs the proper V90 bit ? Funny you should ask!



    I managed to get the holes all the way through on the first, and not on the second one, so I’m still learning with the depth setting, I’m just being overly cautious though, the machine has insanely fine control so you’re think that seems really far, and its like  a micron or something, three full turns and still not enough.


    I also adjusted my vacuum to bleed a little, so that its generating less suction, it has helped and not getting the ghosting quite as much.


    Of course you could read the owners manual, i really just glossed through bits of it, and Chris at AccurateCNC likes to remind me of that every few emails, he’s right though 😉


    I setup a webcam with Webcam XP so i could watch the machine from the other room and see how its getting on, and a moth came over was very interested in what was going on, used a second webcam pointing at the machine.

    The software is pretty easy to use, I actually struggled with some parts of it because I’m used to bad software, I like the way that it zooms in where the mouse is, and not just the centre for instance, nice touches.


    I cut another board, that came out looking good from a quick visual, i haven’t taken it off yet since i want to drill it, and to be perfectly honest, i dislike imperial measurements intensely, so all that 0.007 8/32th’s stuff has to go away (the software shows both, its the hardware i need to legend.


    Things learnt today


    1. REALLY check the bit, learn that the V bit is short and stubby and the drill bits look like drill bits..

    2. In the tool change area have something soft to catch bits if you drop them, not hard floor, wood, metal etc. Although this helped me find my mistake as i fumbled the 18 mil bit so it dropped out and broke, i had to go checking, and noticed there were two 18 mil bits, which gave away the legend.

    3. Read the manual ( I’m probably not going too, and will keep on making mistakes but I’m having fun doing it)

    4. Take a deep breath and relax, if you’re not that used to this sort of machine it can be intimidating or overwhelming. Its really not that bad at all.

    5. Have a dedicated computer. I set mine up with just the various cnc tools i used and subversion.

    6. Too much suction can be bad, it moves the board.

    7. Be aware of the dust.

    8. Convert all the drill bits and such to the measurement system you’re used too beforehand. Have a good supply of bits, i bought both kits 1 and 2, but i think maybe I might need more (just not 18mils)

    9. There is a PAUSE button, and you can restart in the G code at any place, chris pointed that out to me, and that its in the manual…

    7. I have to go over this blog and fix the grammar errors! But I’m beat for tonight.


    Tomorrow I’ll try the fiducial registration..

  • charliex 2:13 am on August 27, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Millling, , , PCB milling   

    AccurateCNC 360 PCB Test 


    Here are the results! I’m pretty happy so far, haven’t studied them in exquisite detail but I’ll be doing that tonight!








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