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Thread: Hurco PCMax

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  1. #1
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    Oct 2007
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    69

    Hurco PCMax

    Hello all,
    I used to work at a shop with several old Hurco Max 2 and Max 3 machines. I did a lot of the programming on those machines offline using a desktop and running PCMax. They recently called me back in to tweak a few programs for updated castings and the desktop I used to program on is now missing the dongle for the PCMax program. As the programming I need to do would be very difficult to do on the floor I would really like to find a copy of PCMax or a way to work around the missing dongle. Or to find a replacement dongle if possible. Any help world be greatly appreciated.

    All the best.
    John

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Feb 2021
    Posts
    4

    Re: Hurco PCMax

    Let's see what we can do about your situation. I'm sort of in the same boat as you in that we have one old computer that uses a version of Mastercam Draft9 to send/receive programs to the old Ultimax machines, and while I have been working on solutions to get a secondary machine to work as a backup, I still have had little luck with that. So, for the time being, we just hope that computer keeps going. If it ever dies, we are in trouble. It sounds like you are in a similar situation- all eggs in one basket, and now you are stuck because that one process doesn't work anymore. I feel for you there.

    In regards to your questions, was PCMAX able to actually convert Hurco's conversational formatting into a G code NC program, or are you trying to simply change the file extension only? For us, when we save the program as an ".NC" or .txt file extension, it is still an unrecognizable program to other machines as it consists of characters that look like a bunch of 0's, 8's, commas, and colons. That's in the form that I was unable to upload into the newer machines because it said that wasn't a "True .hd3" format. An actual .hd3 format looks like this: S's and degree signs. Very, very strange encryption. Now, I'm wondering, with Con2NC were you able to take this code format and actually unencrypt it into real G Code .NC files? This is something I've never been able to do.

    Winmax Desktop works with their newest versions of files with extension .HWM. Our oldest machine that runs .HWM files is from 2007. What Winmax Desktop can do that is nice is the ability to take newer .HWM files and save them as HD3 files, so it makes the programs backwards compatible. Other than that, Winmax Desktop is simply the machine interface on a computer. There are no additional features that I know of such as Con2NC. If there was something like that, it would be amazing.

    EdytorNC is basically a free program I use to send/receive files using RS232 and to compare G code programs side by side. It reminds me of a cheap version of Cimco Edit, minus the backplot features. It wouldn't help you in your conversion process.

    For us, we have never actually had a way to convert Hurco conversational programs into G Code to use on other machines. Our Hurco Lathe is the same thing- if we run a program there, we will likely run it there again as the other machines can't read it. However, G code programs can always be put into those machines. It's kind of a one way street- and the big driver of us acquiring more Hurcos. If we don't, we can't use a majority of our old programs. Plus, we like Hurcos here. We are looking to acquire a Brother high speed spindle machine in the next few months, so at that stage we will just have to get reprogramming certain jobs to run in there. If you have any other ways to convert programs to G Code, let me know. But it sounds like that's not what Hurco wants to happen.

    Have you reached out to Hurco's service department via email? I always find them to be pretty responsive, but they don't have many answers for Old systems like Ultimax or Max2/Max3

    That wasn't much help, but let me know if you have any other questions from me.

  3. #3
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    Oct 2007
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    69

    Re: Hurco PCMax

    Thanks for the feedback. Yes, PCMAX was able to take a Hurco conversational program and convert it to an NC program. That made it very nice to be able to move it to another machine if needed. That is the problem now as the Hurco is tied up and the part it ran is needed so we are trying to move it. Hurco hasn't been much help as this is a 25 year old program and they don't support it any more.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Feb 2021
    Posts
    4

    Re: Hurco PCMax

    Being able to convert the files to G code is definitely a nice feature. I haven't found any way in my travels to do this on the Ultimax or Winmax systems. Looks like Hurco did away with that ability back in the day. I wish you the best of luck either finding the HASP or rewriting the programs. Sometimes these instances are the push a company needs to move to a more updated system, no matter how painful it can be. Perhaps it's best to look into CAM programming so the programs can be used on all machines including the Hurco?

    Best wishes,

    Mike

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