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IndustryArena Forum > Machine Controllers Software and Solutions > Fanuc > Adding a rotary table to an already 4 axis machine - can I switch between them?
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  1. #1
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    Adding a rotary table to an already 4 axis machine - can I switch between them?

    Hi everyone. I have a Leedwell Horizontal mill with a true 4th axis. It has a Fanuc OM control. What I want to do is instal a rotary table on top of the table to do some small work. I don't need to run all axis at once and was wondering if it were possible to instal some type of switch on the control so I could switch from using the 4th axis, which is the table, to the 4th axis clamped on top of the table? Cheers Damo

  2. #2
    Do you have all ready in the machine for the 4th axis??? You need an additional 4th axis servo amplifier, cables etc.

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  3. #3
    Some parameters needs change to work with 4th axis. I can help you send me pictures of your servo motor and your axys drivers.

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  4. #4
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    If you can clamp your original 4th axis and use exactly the same motor and gear for the additional axis, it should work. But if you switch, while the Machine is switched on, some parts will be broken..

  5. #5
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    is yours a oM-A/B/C/D? the A is analog, a little more flexible with servo selections- but a bit more limited in ability.

    I built a horizontal 4th for my cnc bridgeport (fanuc 0m-a) and didnt mount the extra amp yet...interim, just 'parked' the y axis on centerline and moved the cables to the 4th. theres most likely a bunch of parameter tweaks required, I'd use a G10L50 sub to select one or the other, then cycle power. if its something you wont ever swap 'hot' or need to do often, this might be easiest option...just clamp the 4th down- beware though if cutting on a clamped axis for extended periods, expect damage from fretting corrosion...stationary bearings dont take well to vibration over extended periods of time, need to move things around occasionally. we had a bunch of ZF 2 speed gearboxes on leadwell lathes we ran in high gear for a year- when time came for low gear, we found the sungears were all fretted away from being stationary too long, still applying torque...similar damage found in turrets that werent indexed for long periods.

    I have often wondered about a 5th axis, with some type of switching, but it would be tough- you could likely use servo detach to ignore encoder signal loss, then swap signals with relays, re enable the servo off, but...would require same encoder ratio (or messy macro scaling- if gain was stable), brakes on both servos(would still loose a few counts) would need mcode/macro to store/restore counts to 4th axis register, and I dont think you can change the 4th axis display letter without cycling power- but havent tried it yet...without changing axis letter, display would be confusing. if you are not interpolating to the rotary axis, you could do a simpler macro move to position a standalone 'powermate-a' or even a add-on plc/step-direction amp. I did a powermate-a on a 4 axis 0-a many years ago, used macro i/o to to feed/direction, etc...kinda as a additional 1/2 axis to the original 4...worked out well, but was a fair bit of work to get it right.

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    Hi guys, thanks for the replies. The servo motors are the type with the red encoders. I'm not sure how to see the version of OM it is, on the boot screen it says OMM? What I imagined is having a switch on the control and use the same servo drive to drive the rotary table. I was hoping that it could be done without switching off the control, but perhaps not. If I had the same servo motor on the rotary table I figured it would be maybe possible. I know there is a parameter to disable the 4th axis (parameter 19.1) but this probably requires the machine restart. I thought maybe if it didn't need the reboot then I could disable the 4th axis, switch it and then enable the new one. I might try that parameter and see what happens, I wonder if power and everything is cut as well? Usually with an encoder feedback system, is there a constant communication with the control, or is it just when movement is required?

  7. #7
    Yes change the parameter 19.1=0 and probe it. Good luck

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  8. #8
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    Ok, well changing parameter 19.1 did nothing in regard to the 4th axis, even after rebooting. Maybe that parameter is for a different control. Where do I read the control model. Cheers Damo

  9. #9
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    I found the best way to identity a FANUC is with the part numbers of the various cards and masterboard. The control unit also has its own ID and is in the format A02B-00xx-B5xx. Look for a yellow tag that says Control Unit inside your enclosure also note the number of your CRT/MDI unit which is a similar #, but instead is a -C0xx format.

    The masterboard had a part number like A16B-xxxx-xxxx. Each model used a different set of masterboards.

    Add to this the date of manufacture and the software version will tell you which model you have.

    I have parameter manuals for the C model if you need them.

    There are analog versions of the 0 and digital versions.

    Manuals from FANUC are relatively inexpensive but if you're a good googler they're all downloadable.

    This one is interesting to me becuase I run a 12" rotary table sitting on my machines XY table, which has a AC redcap motor on occasion as my opt. 4th but I don't need it all the time so I usually use the 4th disconnect.
    Gotta be a better way though.

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    no worries , I'll play and post what I find. I think my situation is the same as yours basically with the exception i'm just going to change from one forth axis to the other. I guess as long as the table clamps are still active whilst using the smaller 4th axis, should be ok. cheers Damo

  11. #11
    Here i send you some pictures. Also i have all parameters if someone need. PM please.

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  12. #12
    The servo motor need be the correct serial code for Fanuc OM code is A06B 0123 H*** where last 3 numbers depend of the type of shaft motor.

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  13. #13
    Fanuc OM use Alpha series motors. My 4th axis servo motor is A06B0123H0679 is an Alpha 3.

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  14. #14
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    My 4th axis servo number is A06B-0314-B004, the date of manufacture is JUN 1994, the Model is FANUS - OMF, It looks like the 3 axis have 1 servo drive, number A20B-1003-0864, then a smaller one number A06B-6059-K031. The main board where there is a goup of boards pluged into it is A02B-0098-B511. It also says Fanuc O-MF Max. 4 Axes. (so does that mean it is an O-MF control and that Fanuc cant spell axis? Cheers Damien

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    So is it fair to say that if I had a smaller 4th axis clamped to the top of the table (which is the existing 4th axis), then all I need to do is somehow connect the power and encoder cables to the other motor?? (if the 2 motors are the same). So basically, turn off the control, and switch the leads? If I switch the leads while its on will it stuff something? Is the encoder and power in constant communication when the control is on? If I turn off the control, will the big 4th axis move a fraction, or will the clamps hold it as it were before it was switch off? What's the best solution here? Cheers Damo

  16. #16
    My Fanuc is OMD

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  17. #17
    Both tables has the same code motors? You need to check the serial code servo motor before connect it!!! Look these pictures from my motor.

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    I haven't got the second 4th axis yet, just planning ahead.

  19. #19
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    Congratulations, Damo, you have a O-MF control. The F means that you have a OM milling control with the FAPT control and software built in. FAPT (aka FANUC Automatic Programming Tool) is pretty easy its more conversational. You basically answer questions and it writes the programs for you.

    Looks like by the A02B-0098-B5xx you have a C or D model.

    Somewhere on the big main board is a part number A16B-xxxx-xxxx.

    You also seem to have the S series AC red cap motor(s). Along with your spindle servo wbich is also a S series type.

    And yes Axes is correct. It's plural for Axis. Sounds better than Axis's
    or Axii, etc.

    Mid 90s was the realm of the C and D model O/0 controls. Do you have one that has a white label, yellow label or a gray label above the CRY screen??

    Need manuals I can help you.

    No most O/0 controls use S series type servos and servo amplifiers, the A06B-6058-Hxxx/ A06B-6059-Hxxx. They can also use the A06B-6066 and if the software and axes control board is right, a early alpha. tc can help ya there.

    Look at your Axes board should be one with a A16B-2200-xxxx number.

    The boot up screens that flash by may show the software version.

    Yeah it may be possible to do a swap of cable if the servo is the same although you may need to change the axes designator letter, X, Y, Z, A, B, C, U, V, W are the common ones. Altough, I've never seen a 9 axes machine...

  20. #20
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    Thanks Bowne. When I bought the machine the guy showed me that it had the FAPT conversational side to it. I had never seen one before. I'm an ISO person although used to manage a machine shop with a few guys working on Mazatrol machines. On the Makino machines we had PC's with Mastercam hooked up. I think the ISO/mastercam machines were quicker in the end and more versatile than the Mazatrol.
    So back to my machine. Do you think it is possible to have more than 4 AXES, or were they serious about "Max 4 Axes" ? Meaning, if I have this smaller rotary table on top of the existing main rotary table, I'll have to swap the cables, even if I did have another servo drive???

    The label above the CRT screen is yellow. There are 2 servo drives, one has 3 cables, probably x,y, and z, the other has 1 cable, probably the A axis. The larger one with the 3 cables has the N0.A20B-1003-0864/01A toward the rear where it's mounted and the board on the front of it is N0. A16B-1100-0330-105B. The smaller servo driver with 1 cable has the N0. A20B-1003-0140 toward the rear where it's mounted and then A20B-1003-0090/02 on it's front board. One of the boards plugged into the main boards has the N0. PMC-M A16B-1211-0901.

    Cheers Damien

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