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IndustryArena Forum > Machine Controllers Software and Solutions > Controller & Computer Solutions > Suggestions for electronics on new Wabeco CC-F1410 milling maching
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  1. #1
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    Suggestions for electronics on new Wabeco CC-F1410 milling maching

    Hi all,

    I am into purchasing new Wabeco milling machine. I decided that factory made CNC version is too risky - it comes with Kosy hardware and NCCAD software. Resources on forums are vague and mostly reflect on NCCAD software versions dating from couple of years ago and people didn't have good experiences. I would definitely opt for turnkey solution where I can do Fusion360 work, export CAM, import it to mill computer and start cutting, but I don't know if Kosy+NCCAD is the way to go with that. Spending 6 months trying to make machine move is not an option for me. On the other hand, Wabeco's CNC pricing is kind of huge. They offer three tiers of CNC (ready) machines:

    1 - Machine with steppers and limit switches
    2 - #1 + Basic cnc package (3 axes controller + basic software) (add EUR 1000)
    3 - #1 + Pro cnc package (4 axes controller + pro software) (add EUR 1800 to #2)

    So I think that adding 2800 EUR to machine in order to achieve questionable results is a bit too much, but I'm more afraid of questionable results and steep learning curve. I believe I'll opt for basic machine with integrated 3 axes 6 amp steppers, ball screws and linear slides instead of dove tails. Now question is, how to hook up those 3 steppers.

    Here are some things I'd like to have
    - gecko drives
    - ability to handle them from LinuxCNC and Mach (I'd opt for linux if I need to chose)

    I figured out that G540 isn't a way to go because of amperage of steppers that come with the mill. That leaves me with individual drives and a breakout board of some sort. I believe Gecko G203V should be ok. I have no idea if I need half steps, or 5 microsteps, I suppose I don't. From what I could have read, it seems that drives with native resolution of 10 microsteps need somewhat faster interface that can be achieved by getting boards such as Mesa.

    Mesa offers Plug & Go kits with 6I25 PCIe interface. Those apparently work with LinuxCNC without problems. I don't know how they behave on Windows with Mach. Any experiences there? Which Plug & Go kit would you suggest?

    And in the end, I discovered Centroid Acorn. It seems to me that it can be the most plug & play solution out there. It's ethernet based, supposedly has very good software (aside from the fact that it's Windows based), should work with Gecko drives, etc. Is that the way to go?

    Also, given that the mill has also wheels for manual milling, will I be able to use any of that software as DRO (steppers working as transducers) or do I have to add rotary encoders for that?

    I apologise for long post, although I believe I did most of my homework, I'd still like to have some first hand confirmations from you folks.

    Thanks,
    Bruno

  2. #2
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    Re: Suggestions for electronics on new Wabeco CC-F1410 milling maching

    Quote Originally Posted by bbatarelo View Post
    Hi all,

    I am into purchasing new Wabeco milling machine. I decided that factory made CNC version is too risky - it comes with Kosy hardware and NCCAD software. Resources on forums are vague and mostly reflect on NCCAD software versions dating from couple of years ago and people didn't have good experiences. I would definitely opt for turnkey solution where I can do Fusion360 work, export CAM, import it to mill computer and start cutting, but I don't know if Kosy+NCCAD is the way to go with that. Spending 6 months trying to make machine move is not an option for me. On the other hand, Wabeco's CNC pricing is kind of huge. They offer three tiers of CNC (ready) machines:

    1 - Machine with steppers and limit switches
    2 - #1 + Basic cnc package (3 axes controller + basic software) (add EUR 1000)
    3 - #1 + Pro cnc package (4 axes controller + pro software) (add EUR 1800 to #2)

    So I think that adding 2800 EUR to machine in order to achieve questionable results is a bit too much, but I'm more afraid of questionable results and steep learning curve. I believe I'll opt for basic machine with integrated 3 axes 6 amp steppers, ball screws and linear slides instead of dove tails. Now question is, how to hook up those 3 steppers.

    Here are some things I'd like to have
    - gecko drives
    - ability to handle them from LinuxCNC and Mach (I'd opt for linux if I need to chose)

    I figured out that G540 isn't a way to go because of amperage of steppers that come with the mill. That leaves me with individual drives and a breakout board of some sort. I believe Gecko G203V should be ok. I have no idea if I need half steps, or 5 microsteps, I suppose I don't. From what I could have read, it seems that drives with native resolution of 10 microsteps need somewhat faster interface that can be achieved by getting boards such as Mesa.

    Mesa offers Plug & Go kits with 6I25 PCIe interface. Those apparently work with LinuxCNC without problems. I don't know how they behave on Windows with Mach. Any experiences there? Which Plug & Go kit would you suggest?

    And in the end, I discovered Centroid Acorn. It seems to me that it can be the most plug & play solution out there. It's ethernet based, supposedly has very good software (aside from the fact that it's Windows based), should work with Gecko drives, etc. Is that the way to go?

    Also, given that the mill has also wheels for manual milling, will I be able to use any of that software as DRO (steppers working as transducers) or do I have to add rotary encoders for that?

    I apologise for long post, although I believe I did most of my homework, I'd still like to have some first hand confirmations from you folks.

    Thanks,
    Bruno
    Hello Bruno

    I am in a fairly similar position, I bought a CC-F1210 with complete enclosure and stand etc, it was installed with NCCAD Professional and a nice little PC included, the machine had run for about 1.5 hours max.. The man selling the machine said his business had taken a different direction, so he wanted to sell the machine, it was about 5 years old but like I say 1.5 hours running.

    I had read about the issues with NCCAD so I would not be surprised if I had problems, however to be fair the machine works quite OK with NCCAD. I cut metal with the NCCAD the first day that I had the machine installed, it did not take too lomg to figure out what the post processor should be doing.

    Is NCCAD good, well no it feels about 15 years old and is clumsey to use, it has a limited implimentation of DIN 66025 G code but it does work. I just use the KOSY NCCAD to import G code and run/control the machine, I do everything CAD/CAM wise with BobCAD and other CAD programs.

    I use the machine every day, I am mostly machining stainless steel detail hinges and feet for composite furniture on a mega expensive yacht, this work is a combination of 2.5D and full 3D surface machining. I get a really good finish once I figured out speeds and feeds for the machine and material.

    Anyway to answer your question, I am going to replace the NCCAD system with an Eding controller, I am very familier with Mach 3 and it is very good, however Eding provide their own control software that looks to be very well sorted out, you can download a demo to inspect yourself.

    I have a CNC router by CNC-Step and that has a fantastic control made by CNC-Step and with software by Benezen, it is really good but the control is limited to 3.5A per stepper and they are reluctant to sell the control if you dont have one of their machines.

    Eding dont sell drives and the like but they told me to go to Hardware CNC which is a Dutch reseller who might be able to provide a complete package.

    I think there is some merit in you considering the basic NCCAD equiped machine and then junking the control board, my reason for this is that the Wabeco control is quite well housed and has a pendant type control box which is good. The Wabeco wiring loom looks well implimented with the home switches etc. These parts all take some time and money to get right in a DIY installation.

    Are you going with the 1.4Kw or 2Kw spindle? I have the 1.4Kw spindle and it works well, it maintains a constant speed under load. A problem is that the spindle speed is not variable from the NCCAD in the 1.4Kw system. The 1.4Kw motor is an AEG washing machine motor and housed in the Wabeco control box is an AEG board that controls the motor, I have even been able to find the board as a spare part from domestic appliance spares suppliers. I would not let the fact that the motor is from a domestic appliance be a cause for concern as it does a very good job. I am fairly sure I will be able to figure out how to control the speed of the spindle with the Eding control.

    What type of work are you intending to do with the Wabeco? I am pleased with mine and I know that when I have upgraded the control I will take another step forwards with capability, I intend to get the option headstock from Wabeco to house a high speed spindle, as I have a spare Jager spindle, this would enable very fine machining to be carried out, I am fairly sure the Wabeco can resolve accurately enough to do that work for me, I am meaning things like 2 part aluminium matched tools for small pressed composite parts (RC propellors around 200mm diameter spring to mind).

    I would be interested to know your thoughts on my comments and I will upload some Youtube material for you to look at.

    Youtube video of my Wabeco 3D milling stainless steel.

    Regards

    Barrie
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails DSC_0290.jpg  
    Barrie @ Composite Specialities Ltd. using BobCAD V29 Mill 3 axis Pro, Geomagic Design, Bricscad V16 and MOI V3

  3. #3
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    Re: Suggestions for electronics on new Wabeco CC-F1410 milling maching

    I guess this is probably a good time to talk about NCCAD.

    The programme is much maligned on forums, I guess you have to ask what do you want it to do with it? CAD plus CAM or just CAM, I only use it for CAM and just import G code, once the post processor requirements are understood it is actually a pretty solid machine controller.

    NCCAD certainly does not have all the bell's and wistles and GUI that a well setup Mach3/4, Eding, Benezen or other similar PC based control's have but like I said previously it does control the machine quite well. I have days were I think do I really need to upgrade this system and then other days where I want to get out of it, I would say close to 50/50.

    I guess what holds me back from an upgrade is a cost of a decent control system and associated boards plus the downtime of the installation.

    Regards

    Barrie
    Barrie @ Composite Specialities Ltd. using BobCAD V29 Mill 3 axis Pro, Geomagic Design, Bricscad V16 and MOI V3

  4. #4
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    Re: Suggestions for electronics on new Wabeco CC-F1410 milling maching

    Some positioning tests that I ran today with the Wabeco.

    Barrie @ Composite Specialities Ltd. using BobCAD V29 Mill 3 axis Pro, Geomagic Design, Bricscad V16 and MOI V3

  5. #5
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    Re: Suggestions for electronics on new Wabeco CC-F1410 milling maching

    Hi Barrie,

    thanks for thorough reply. All this that you said tells me that I probably made a good decision. I went with maximum mechanical upgrades as far as machine goes, but without electronics.
    I ordered CC-F1410 with:
    - spindle upgrade from MT2 to ISO30
    - 2 kw motor with VFD
    - linear guides
    - ball screws
    - 6 amp steppers
    - limit switches

    I also ordered coolant system and coolant fetching tray. Machine should be made in about 5 weeks from now. I plan on using this machine as a functional upgrade to my already parted Optimum BF30 Vario mill.

    As far as electronic is concerned, my plan was to go with as much plug and play solution as possible. I ordered Centroid Acorn and 4 Gecko G201X drives. I understand that I will need to assemble a cabinet with power supply and electronics, but that is not a big concern for me.
    It seems to me after moderately thorough research that Centroid leans more towards high end solutions. I am primarily software developer and though I will always chose Linux/Unix solutions, in this particular case I don't mind having Windows computer as a dedicated control system if it comes in combination with full hardware motion control subsystem.

    As far as the future is concerned, I know that Wabeco sells that bracket which substitutes milling head with hi speed spindle and that is definitely an option I'm willing to try at some point.

    Bruno

  6. #6

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    Apr 2020
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    Re: Suggestions for electronics on new Wabeco CC-F1410 milling maching

    Hi Bruno,

    I'm in similar considerations as you were two years ago, considering between the same three choices that you had expressed.

    May I ask you: were you satisfied and what you'd do now retrospectively? Did the installment of Centroid Acorn go without much trouble?

    Best,
    Heikki

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