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 Post subject: Coolant on or off by default according to material?
PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 1:48 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2012 6:50 pm
Posts: 3
In FeatureCAM, is there a way to have my mill coolant turned on or off by default according to material? I am milling acetal plastic about 60% of the time and I use no coolant when machining this material. Of course, I also cut steel and aluminum so I need coolant with those materials. I know how to switch it each time in the machining attributes or edit each program. I'd just like to stop getting splashed when I forget to edit the program each time!


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 Post subject: Re: Coolant on or off by default according to material?
PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:03 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2011 6:08 pm
Posts: 64
Sorry, but the only thing actually "attached" to material type is the feed/speed table. Coolant type is not an option.... I agree It would be a nice feature though, maybe you should email delcam and suggest it....

The only way I can see to do it, would be to create a separate machining configuration to use for plastic, which might be a good idea if you have a bunch of other settings you change for plastic too. But if the coolant is the only change you normally make, you really wont save any time, and are just as likely to forget to change it, since you cant change the machining configuration till you get the new part started anyway....


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 Post subject: Re: Coolant on or off by default according to material?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:47 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 18, 2007 7:41 pm
Posts: 70
You can also override specific cutters for coolant on or off in Endmill Tool Properties /Overrides. This could help if you have certain cutters or cribs that you use for specific materials.


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 Post subject: Re: Coolant on or off by default according to material?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 6:00 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2011 6:08 pm
Posts: 64
GC wrote:
You can also override specific cutters for coolant on or off in Endmill Tool Properties /Overrides. This could help if you have certain cutters or cribs that you use for specific materials.


Unfortunately this one didn't work for me. When I tried it with a face mill, which we don't use coolant on, I get a fault "Fault 090 no M, S, T, OR E programmed" when running the program. Turns out even though FC doesn't put an M08 in to start the coolant, it still puts a "blank" space in the program where it would have been, which our tree's don't like. So I end up having to delete that event anyway.... I guess it would keep you from getting sprayed with coolant, but I am watching closely when I start a program for the first time anyway, so would notice the coolant coming on before that happened, and would then go back and delete the event, so it really doesn't save me any time, other than I find the problem when I run the simulation on the machine rather than when running the program for the first time.

If anyone has any ideas on what I can do to get rid of this "blank" event, let me know.


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 Post subject: Re: Coolant on or off by default according to material?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 22, 2013 1:18 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2007 7:01 pm
Posts: 134
Location: USA
Kyden is on the right track, but it can be a little easier than he thinks. :D

As he suggested, coolant can be controlled by your Machining Configuration, so you could have Machining Configurations that match your materials. For the materials that you machine dry, you could have coolant turned off by default in the config. Here's the cool part (awful pun absolutely intended): There is an add-in macro that will switch the Machining Config automatically with the material, as long as the names match. I have tried it out in the past, and it seemed to work pretty well. You can find it on the Add-ins page of featurecam.com, and it's called LoadConfigForMaterial.bas It is pretty nice, because if you program a part in one material and then change materials, all of the default settings update.

FYI... I think that if there is no match between the stock name and a Machining Config, it will just default to whatever your "initial config" is. Not sure on that one...

I hope this helps,
Marshall


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 Post subject: Re: Coolant on or off by default according to material?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 23, 2013 7:27 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2012 6:50 pm
Posts: 3
Thanks Marshall!!

Your "COOL" tip 8) worked really well!! It worked exactly as you said it would.

At first, when I'd switch to another material it'd give me an error saying material does not exist. So I simply created a configuration for the 6 or 8 materials that I actually use and problem solved.

Thanks for the help guys!!

RC


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 Post subject: Re: Coolant on or off by default according to material?
PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 12:14 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2012 3:04 pm
Posts: 3
you could also change the <COOLANT> value to M09 in your post based on the <MATERIAL> name if you edit your Tool Change and Program Start formats in your Post and add
<IF>[eq(<MATERIAL>,"Material Name")]<THEN>
[:<COOLANT>="M09"]
<ENDIF>
put this in front of the line where <COOLANT> is used
JackS


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 Post subject: Re: Coolant on or off by default according to material?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 9:39 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2011 6:08 pm
Posts: 64
Wow that worked great JackS, I just copied your code and pasted to my post in-line just before <coolant>, added the material name, and now it adds an m09 instead of just a blank event, (which my machine wouldn't accept). Thanks a lot!

What if I want to add more than one material type?


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 Post subject: Re: Coolant on or off by default according to material?
PostPosted: Sat Mar 30, 2013 10:46 am 
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Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2012 3:04 pm
Posts: 3
you asked about post code "What if I want to add more than one material type? to this code <IF>[eq(<MATERIAL>,"Material Name")]<THEN>
<IF>[or ( eq(<MATERIAL>,"Material Name") , eq(<MATERIAL>,"Another Name") ) ]<THEN>

if you go to the Help screen for Xbuild and search for Logical operators, go to the bottom of the page and click on "more examples......" move the slider to the bottom, it will give you examples so now you can go crazy putting logic into your post
you might look at string operators (go top of the help screen for logical operators , click >)
for example, if you started all naming your plastic materials with the letters Plastic ( like Plastic3458) then you could code it like
<IF>[eq(<MATERIAL>,(mid(<MATERIAL>,0,7),"Plastic")]<THEN>

easiest way I found to see what this code doe,s is to make any simple feature, then edit Program Start format and at the very top, start putting in your test code
put this in the very first 2 lines, in front of everything else
<MATERIAL> <EOB>
mid(<MATERIAL>,0,3)<EOB>
then under File tab, click "save & test CNC", this will give you instant feedback on what you will be getting
go nuts!
JackS


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