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  1. #1
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    Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    I looked at a used mill today. It has a Fanuc 0M controller. All of the main features of the controller seemed to work we ran a small program that was already on the controller. Did some manual jogging etc.

    I was not able to transfer a program to the Fanuc from PC when I looked at the machine. My main question is how large of a GCode file can the Fanuc 0M controller take before I have to drip feed the gcode to the machine?

    Also what type of support is there for this controller. What do I do when the controller starts to act up or I have problems with it. Can you repair the controller or how difficult is it to retrofit with easy stepper and mach. Would I have to gut all of the electronics and replace all of the servo drives?

  2. #2
    Community Moderator Al_The_Man's Avatar
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    There is absolutely no comparison between Fanuc 0 and Mach!
    Fanuc is a world wide industrial control.
    Do you know the version A,B,C OR D?
    The amount of program memory can sometimes be enlarged by a option parameter set to 1.
    check the status of the 901 parameters.
    What error did you get when trying to transfer a Pgm?
    Al.
    CNC, Mechatronics Integration and Custom Machine Design

    “Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.”
    Albert E.

  3. #3
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    Al,

    I do not know the version of the controller. How do I determine the version? I will not be able to check it unless I go back to look at the machine again. I also don't know the 901 parameters.

    We did not try to transfer a program as I was not sure of the proper method. I have since found the information provided by you and others on this forum on how to transfer programs to the Fanuc 0M from a current pc.

    Are these controllers still repairable? If something were to go wrong with it can I still get replacement parts? If I buy the machine I will definitely keep the Fanuc control until it goes bad then I will have to weigh replacement parts or switch out the system to a different system.

  4. #4
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    Fanuc controls are rock solid and hell reliable. you would never want to put in some PC-based piece of crap once you get to know Fanuc. it would probably be very difficult and expensive anyway. if something does go wrong Fanuc have a worldwide network of authorized repairers. you would only need to call Fanuc and they will send out someone local to where you are. Fanuc is the #1 CNC manufacturer and has always been #1 from the beginning. their after-sales and repair service is top rate and second to none.
    for memory you can check it in the controller when powered on, on the program directory screen. it shows how many characters are free.
    2048 = 2k, 16384 = 16k, 65535= 64k etc
    the control has many cycles and other functions to reduce the size of the program so it will easily fit in standard memory.
    I think the 0-series can max out at 1MB (with memory expansion options). that's a million characters. you would have to do 3D multi-axis machining using CAM software like MasterCAM to max that out. you can DNC from a PCMCIA memory card if the control has that fitted.
    if you are buying a used machine take someone with you who knows Fanuc. either a CNC machinist/CNC programmer or someone very knowledgeable on Fanuc CNCs. that way he can do the checking/testing and you will get the correct answer to your questions.

  5. #5
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    Hi Nitro,

    On a Fanuc-OM(D) 128K (320M) is the limit, see attachment.
    For normal use 64K is enough, when you want to engrave/lettering or simple 3D you need at least 128K.
    As for as I know the OM has no PCMCIA available.
    Check always for 2-way communication, receive and transmit/send nc-code.
    Sometimes IC's for communication or damaged, 75188 (driver-ic) and 75189 (receiver-ic).
    You need a [ DNC/Tape ] mode on the machine for dripfeed (large programs).
    Also check for backlash on X- and Y-axis.
    Never change 900 - Option parameters, it can lost all other parameters.
    Only when you know what you are doing you can change them.

    Regards,
    Heavy_Metal.

  6. #6
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    1: 128k is the upper limit for FS0 (such as yours).
    2: no communication other than RS232.
    3: parts and service are plentyful for years to come.
    4: save all important data such as parameters, programs, offsets.
    Lots of help on how to do this.
    5: When the control powers up, it will display the software version; that's all we need.

  7. #7
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    ah yes 128k. I was getting my bits and bytes mixed up. 1MBits (i.e. 1024000 bits) = 128k ;-)
    I suppose the 0 is the cheapest control so they have to limit it somehow.

  8. #8
    Community Moderator Al_The_Man's Avatar
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    Quote Originally Posted by Heavy_Metal View Post
    Never change 900 - Option parameters, it can lost all other parameters.
    Only when you know what you are doing you can change them.

    Regards,
    Heavy_Metal.
    This is why a back up of ALL parameters etc should be done and also a hard copy kept.
    Especially on recent acquired machines.
    Al.
    Attached Files Attached Files
    CNC, Mechatronics Integration and Custom Machine Design

    “Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.”
    Albert E.

  9. #9
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    Thanks for the information guys. Do you think I should try to transfer a file to the machine before I buy? Is there much of a risk there? I cannot spend much time at the machine where it currently sets. I don't have the usb to serial converter yet and I don't have the DB9 and DB25 connectors to make the custom patch cable.

    To do a drip feed do I need special software on the PC or will any serial terminal work?

    I am sorry for all of the questions. I have only used Mach based CNC prior to this. Old Fanucs are not my specialty, Yet...

  10. #10
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    i used Hyperterminal for years with no problems; almost any comm. software should work.

  11. #11
    Community Moderator Al_The_Man's Avatar
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    There is also Cadem Lite which is a very good free pgm.
    To drip feed on the 0 some versions require that a PMC/ladder change be to turn on a enable bit (G127.5).
    If your version of the 0 shows the ladder, you can check for it.
    Make sure you either get the current parameters or back them up ASAP.
    I always just use the three wire cable with the handshake jumpered.
    Al.
    CNC, Mechatronics Integration and Custom Machine Design

    “Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.”
    Albert E.

  12. #12
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    Al,

    I assume that by Cadem Lite you are referring to NClite by cadem. It says on their webpage that it does not support drip feeding. Can you confirm this?

  13. #13
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    Ok, I downloaded NClite by cadem and it does not allow selection of drip feeding. I assume that they removed this option somewhere along the line. Does someone have the previous version of the program "Cadem Lite" that they would like to share since it was freeware.

  14. #14
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    Nevermind, I see after doing more research that the cadem lite never had the ability to drip feed. Full version is not overly priced. May have to invest in it. I will see how the lite version works first.

  15. #15

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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    Nitro,

    For what it is worth I have found Dnc4u to be a good dnc program (dnc4u.com). It has a 60 day trial with no limitations and is priced around US$149 to unlock. The first time I used it I ran a 3 Mb program. I know NClink doesn't work in dnc mode as it kept dumping after a random number of lines were sent. Predator CNC was annoying as I couldn't run enough code to verify that it really worked - not to mention that they wanted an arm and a leg for it.

    Charles

  16. #16
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    there are several programs out there that can do dnc. better to wait until you have a machine first and figure out the basics as getting dnc to work is normally not a simple task.
    you dont need to test a transfer. just buy a machine and transfer will work. if it doesnt it wont cost much to repair it anyway.
    most of the time a non-working rs232 is due to operator/cable issues. we have machines that have been in constant use for 30 years and never had any kind of rs232 problem. its not a common issue on a cnc machine. sure it can happen, but its not common. more likely it will work fine.
    if you really want to do a test on the machine buy a $10 rs232 tester with LEDs on ebay and then punch out a simple 1-line program and watch the little LEDs flicker. you dont need a laptop, cable, adapter or anything, just plug in the little LED tester thing.
    if the machine punches a program with no alarms that will tell you good enough that its working
    RS232 DB25 Male Female 18 LED Multi Line Status Tester Adapter TS R18 | eBay

  17. #17
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    Tonight I am going to try to transfer the parameters off the machine and try to copy a program to the machine. I will also get information about the controller version etc. Looks like there is a tape program button on the control panel so I guess that is how I would drip feed a program. Won't try drip feeding tonight just a program upload and download. If all goes well I think I will purchase the machine.

  18. #18
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    So results from tonight's test.

    I was able to establish a partial connection to the pc. I was able to export all of the parameters from the Fanuc to the pc.

    I was not able to send a program to the cnc from the pc. The problem was that there were no soft keys displayed on the crt when trying to set up the Fanuc to receive the program.

    I expect this is due to a parameter issue. The way I understand it from the current owner is that he had to replace the backup battery holder. In doing so I wonder if some of the parameters for the machine were lost. The current owner has been in contact with Fanuc several times but I am pretty sure that he is less informed about the Fanuc controller than I am at this point.

    Does anyone know why the softkeys are not showing up when trying to transfer a program to the Fanuc from the pc?

  19. #19
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    Oh yes also while we were trying to transfer a program to the Fanuc we were stuck and powered down the unit. When we powered it back up we had error 101 and error 401. My question is was error 401 a result of error 101 or is there something fishy with the servo drives also?

  20. #20
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    Re: Fanuc 0M Gcode file size?

    Hi Nitro,

    For 0M alarms check;
    Fanuc 0/00/0-mate Control Alarms | CNC Alarms.com.

    Like I said before, first check everything before you buy a cnc-machine.
    There are big fans of Fanuc here on the forum but in Europe you don't want Fanuc-technicians in your shop.
    All cnc-control manufactures create there own domain and they are sometimes very expensive when you want to repair things.

    Regards,
    Heavy_Metal.

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