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IndustryArena Forum > MetalWorking Machines > Benchtop Machines > Prolight 3000 Turning Center
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  1. #1
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    Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    I just bought a Prolight 3000 lathe turning center from a closing school. Came with everything, ATC, ISA card, control box and everything else. I would like to upgrade it tho because the softwaer is kinda limited and computer is old because of isa card. I looked up a little and doing a Mach3 conversion is apparently the way to go. I am very new at this, only have worked with new CNC never modified any. What would be the parts I need? I know I would need a control board but is that it? What brand is the best for this application and somewhat easy?? Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    I bought a Prolight 3000 last year. It had come from a school, and I got it intact and working, original computer and all. I have used it several times since, and I can just say - use it the way it is. The software does all the normal things, and you don't have to mess around with anything. It's not hard to use, once you are used to the interface. Mine runs under Win95, so yes it's old. However, it works just fine, so I use it as is. Since you are just learning anyway, there is no advantage to updating the controls until they fail on you. Keep in mind that that may happen, but until then - make chips!

    Incidentally - you have a lucky find - mine didn't come with the turret(ATC), nor a tailstock (factory option, never installed). I found a second one, with no driver box or computer, and it doesn't have the ATC or tailstock, either. (The second one is set up for gang-tooling, though).

  3. #3
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    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Quote Originally Posted by DSpeck View Post
    I bought a Prolight 3000 last year. It had come from a school, and I got it intact and working, original computer and all. I have used it several times since, and I can just say - use it the way it is. The software does all the normal things, and you don't have to mess around with anything. It's not hard to use, once you are used to the interface. Mine runs under Win95, so yes it's old. However, it works just fine, so I use it as is. Since you are just learning anyway, there is no advantage to updating the controls until they fail on you. Keep in mind that that may happen, but until then - make chips!

    Incidentally - you have a lucky find - mine didn't come with the turret(ATC), nor a tailstock (factory option, never installed). I found a second one, with no driver box or computer, and it doesn't have the ATC or tailstock, either. (The second one is set up for gang-tooling, though).
    I was going to do that but what's happening is I use Fusion 360 just because I have used it forever and know it well. But it makes the machine plunge and do weird movements but in the simulation In fusion it doesn't? What cad cam program do you use?

  4. #4
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    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    I usually hand-write the program. Hand-writing lathe code is a lot easier than mill code. I've used Mastercam at work, for some parts there. There are a few free lathe CAM programs around, for basic 2-axis lathe stuff. Look up Ezilathe, and GrblGru, as a couple of examples. I have several other CNC lathe projects, but they all need modernized controls, so I haven't done a lot with lathe CAM yet.

  5. #5

    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    The post processors in Fusion 360 are written in javascript and very easy to modify. My CNC lathe uses an AhHa controller that has quite a few unconventional gcodes but I was able to easily make it work.

    I'd be happy to work with you to get a working post for your controller. Here's a thread where a couple of us worked on making a post processor for the Dynamechtronics SKIP controller where the code is far from gcode: http://www.cnczone.com/forums/dyna-m...oftware-2.html

    Let me know.

    Dave

  6. #6
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    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Quote Originally Posted by dammachines View Post
    The post processors in Fusion 360 are written in javascript and very easy to modify. My CNC lathe uses an AhHa controller that has quite a few unconventional gcodes but I was able to easily make it work.

    I'd be happy to work with you to get a working post for your controller. Here's a thread where a couple of us worked on making a post processor for the Dynamechtronics SKIP controller where the code is far from gcode: http://www.cnczone.com/forums/dyna-m...oftware-2.html

    Let me know.

    Dave
    Hey Dave that would be great! I'm pretty new to this so that would be great. Right now it's a stock controller.


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  7. #7

    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Quote Originally Posted by 4DCustoms View Post
    Hey Dave that would be great! I'm pretty new to this so that would be great. Right now it's a stock controller.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

    Does this look like the manual for your controller? http://www.intelitekdownloads.com/Ma...WIN_Manual.pdf

    What post are you using right now? The generic fanuc? Can you attach a copy of a program you've tried to run unsuccessfully?

  8. #8

    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Oh, I think you might want to take a look here before we do anything. https://forums.autodesk.com/t5/hsm-p...ht/true#M10373

    Looks like Autodesk already has a turning post available!

    Dave


    Funny during my search I see that I've already worked with someone on a Prolight 3000 post a while ago. https://forums.autodesk.com/t5/hsm-p...ght/true#M3749

  9. #9
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    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Quote Originally Posted by dammachines View Post
    Oh, I think you might want to take a look here before we do anything. https://forums.autodesk.com/t5/hsm-p...ht/true#M10373

    Looks like Autodesk already has a turning post available!

    Dave


    Funny during my search I see that I've already worked with someone on a Prolight 3000 post a while ago. https://forums.autodesk.com/t5/hsm-p...ght/true#M3749
    That's the thing! I use that post haha and it still doesn't work that's my problem.


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  10. #10

    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Quote Originally Posted by 4DCustoms View Post
    That's the thing! I use that post haha and it still doesn't work that's my problem.


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    Ha! Well, that answers my post question.

    Do you have a sample program that you've tried to run? We'll figure it out.

  11. #11
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    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Quote Originally Posted by dammachines View Post
    Ha! Well, that answers my post question.

    Do you have a sample program that you've tried to run? We'll figure it out.
    Yea just upload the .nc?


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  12. #12

    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Yeah, the .nc file and some information on what the lathe is doing wrong. Are any of the moves what you expect?

  13. #13
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    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Dave, I stumbled upon your posts here, lucky you!
    I just bought an old CNC Lathe, It's a "Red Cam RLA9200" that came from a school and was used very little, looks new.
    It uses AHHA. I have never run a CNC Lathe but have run CNC router/mill/plasma for years. I have no problem writing Gcode for that. I have no code for the lathe, I tried to write a simple code for the lathe thinking it's just 2 axis and m3m5 to turn on off the spin. I have had very limited results, there is something missing in the code i am trying to use. Is there any chance you could share a simple code that would run your ahha lathe? I expect that if I get the start sequence and see a few code details, I could then edit and write code that would work. I just need to get spindle rotation and a couple short moves on the 2 axis to get started.

  14. #14
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    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Dave, I stumbled upon your posts here, lucky you!

    I just bought an old CNC Lathe, It's a "Red Cam RLA9200" that came from a school and was used very little, looks new.
    It uses AHHA. I have never run a CNC Lathe but have run CNC router/mill/plasma for years. I have no problem writing Gcode for that. I have no code for the lathe, I tried to write a simple code for the lathe thinking it's just 2 axis and m3m5 to turn on off the spin. I have had very limited results, there is something missing in the code i am trying to use. Is there any chance you could share a simple code that would run your ahha lathe? I expect that if I get the start sequence and see a few code details, I could then edit and write code that would work. I just need to get spindle rotation and a couple short moves on the 2 axis to get started.

    Morgan

  15. #15

    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Hey Morgan,

    Yeah the Ahha control definitely has some oddities. Let's see if I can remember a few... It is radius mode only. X coordinates are negative if you use a front tool post. Most (if not all) numbers need to have a decimal point in them. G28 doesn't work well on my machine, but that might be just my machine because of something in the MCDMAP.AGC file (contains the macros for things like tool changer, spindle control, etc). I know there are more. My brain is just a little worn out at the end of the week here.. : ) Have you checked out the AHHA yahoo group? There should still be some info there on tool offsets and threading.

    I've attached the code that I believe should be the part on that Youtube video. Should give you a good start! Feel free to PM me here if you have any specific questions - so we don't take this thread off topic for too long.

    Dave

  16. #16
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    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Thanks a million Dave! I ran downstairs and added the decimals, It Works! Thank You!

    Morgan

  17. #17
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    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Quote Originally Posted by dammachines View Post
    Yeah, the .nc file and some information on what the lathe is doing wrong. Are any of the moves what you expect?
    Hey Dave! Sorry for the late response I was away all week but there are some weird movement, I think around line 34 it plunges for no reason here is the .nc code 'PAWN.nc' | TextUploader.com

  18. #18
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    Can you tell me where you bought it? I saw it on Christmas Promo code at Reecoupons, and I really found it quite good, Plz let me know about your one, and also show some pics too, It will help me to buy a best one.

  19. #19
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    Re: Prolight 3000 Turning Center

    Quote Originally Posted by claramax600 View Post
    Can you tell me where you bought it? I saw it on Christmas Promo code at Reecoupons, and I really found it quite good, Plz let me know about your one, and also show some pics too, It will help me to buy a best one.
    For christmas sale check here...

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