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IndustryArena Forum > Machine Controllers Software and Solutions > Mach Software (ArtSoft software) > Tool length offset table in combination with undefined tool
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2006

    Tool length offset table in combination with undefined tool


    Sorry if this has been asked- Im not finding much via search engines-

    Core issue is that Im running a Tormach Tool System on a mill I converted to CNC- which as most of you know fixes Z well enough to permit use of a tool length table without referencing tools to some external device each tool change. Im running MACH3 to control this machine.

    In a case where I'm running a larger program, and have a need for some random tool that is rarely used (no TTS holder for it- where all are allocated to the frequently needed tools in the project), and need to set the depth for that manually during the program cycle, how do I best accomplish that? I cannot simply touch off the tool, leaving its table length entry as zero, and zeroing the DRO for that coordinate system, since that would screw up the coordinate system for the other tooling (based on some master tool…).

    Am I better off dynamically populating the tool length offset in the table for that (uncommonly-used tool)? Am I better off just copying X and Y values from the working coordinate system (G54) to some other (i.e. G55), and then zeroing Z there just for that tool, with a coordinate system change in the code? That seems a huge hassle.

    I just don’t know how people deal with this- where maybe you find that a tool used mid-program is damaged and needs to be replaced before insert. There must be a way that doesn’t require a program restart/run-from-here to deal with it, but I don’t see any simple way to do this that doesn’t require rezeroing the coordinate system after the use of the ‘underdefined’ tool…

    Any help is much appreciated

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2011

    Re: Tool length offset table in combination with undefined tool

    I hope you find an answer (unfortunately I don't have one for you.)
    A common use case for this would be if you're using multiple drills in one chuck in a cycle.
    One workaround, depending on how much accuracy you need and your holder type is to loosely put the tool in the holder and zero the machine (work coordinates) on top of the stock before tightening the holder.

    I think there are macro workarounds as well, where the macro will save the Z offset coordinate to a variable when you zero the tool, then recall that Z offset when you switch to the next tool.

  3. #3
    Community Moderator ger21's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003

    Re: Tool length offset table in combination with undefined tool

    You could write a custom M6 macro. Keep your TTS tools numbered say 1-100. And your non TTS tools 101 and up.
    Have the tool change macro stop the code if the tool # is greater than 100, so you can zero the Z axis. And have it also stop when it goes back to TTS tools, so you can re-define their Z zero.

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2019
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