Category Archives: Article

Buying my First CNC machine

My name is Frank I’m new to the forum. Ive been an operator for almost 2 years now and looking into buying my first CNC machine. I was looking into older Mazaks, but had some advice to be prepared for expensive repairs. Im just looking for some guidance one which direction to go. We run Mazaks at the shop I work at which is why i was leaning that way, but I also like the Okumas. The price of a new haas tm1 is nice but with any options it can get over $40k quick and is much less machine than a mazak or okuma. So my question is what is my best option with reasonable repair cost. I will be seeing the machine operate in person before purchase. So basic working condition is not a concern as much as possible repairs I might run into

Hardinge T42 B Axis Problem

Had the T42 running a simple tubing job.
Part has 1/8″ cross hole.
Machine made 100 Pcs. using proven program.
Live cross drill was programed at B0 & B180.

So the mechanical lock was firing and locking.
(this machine only can lock at 2.5 Deg.)

Now it refuses to lock and getting a 2029 alarm.

Have gotten around it for now by programing B6.0 & B186.0
The spindle brake will hold if not divisible by 2.5.
Plenty strong for this job.

Seems it might be a proximity switch gone semi-bad?

Anyone experienced this before?


Vmc spindle out of tram but axis seems square

2000 yang vmc 1000, same machine as hardinge ii 1000. Machine is level, using a granite 18 square z travel is out less than .0005 to x and y. But sweeping the table front and left side is low .002 over 8 inches. To cross check I ran tenths indicator across the face of the spindle and it’s low .0005 same sides over about 2 inches.
Also if I lean on the head it will easily move back andd up .002 while sweeping. I will remove sheet metal tonight to investigate. Ever seen this? May have a loose truck or balls gone? Rails loose?
Thanks, steve

Tormach machine – advice on tooling for machining Titanium

I’m working on the 6-4 grade stuff.

I’m going to buy some tooling and I’m not sure what would be the best to get.

I have always center drilled my holes with a combination center drill, and then drilled with a regular HSS 118 degree drill.

I have heard that spot drilling is actually better for doing the same operation as a center drill. Can anybody elaborate on why that is the case?

So If I am going to be buying some spot drills, which angle should I buy? I notice they come in angles of 90, 120, and 140.

Also, assuming that I will then be drilling these holes, should I stick with a regular 118 degree drill or can I move to the smaller screw machine length drills that are shorter and seem more rigid? Most of these have a 135 degree angle, and I’m not sure if this would be good for Ti.

Most holes I’ll be drilling will be less than 5/16 in diameter, and through less than 1/4″ of material.

I know that solid carbide would be best for Ti, and coated as well. I will definitely go ahead with that with the spot drills I buy, but not sure about the drills.

I will also be reaming some holes through the same material, and I was advised by someone that carbide tipped reamers would be better than solid carbide, because I would retain the “semi-flexibility” of the HSS body, while still having the strength of the carbide cutting edges. Solid carbide for a reamer seems good but brittle, and that’s the reason this person suggested that.

Thinking of dumping our crappy Haas mills. Anyone running Haas 5 axis rotaries?

Over the past couple years, not knowing any better, I bought 4 Haas verticals for the shop I started from scratch. First machine I got was an 2006 VF2 with almost no extra options. It has given me almost no problems. The other 3 machines I bought were new VF-3SS models with though tool coolant, 40 tools, and 5 axis options installed. I combined each VF3 with a Haas TR-160 rotary.

This whole setup has been horribly unreliable since day one. My new Haas machines all arrived with problems right out of the box. Now that the warranties have expired, I’m literally spending WELL over $10k per machine annually in repairs, and that’s with an independent tech. It was way worse using service from the local HFO. These machines are less than 2 years old. They are down probably 20% of the time. The rotaries are worse, I now have two spares because they break so much. I spend another $5k rebuilding each rotary about once per year, if I’m lucky. So that’s $15k+ for the rotary / machine combination every year in repairs.

Is just me, or is this pretty ridiculous? The repair costs are bad enough, but the constant downtime is becoming too much to handle. We run aluminum on these machines 24 hours a day, and it’s becoming increasingly obvious that Haas machines aren’t built for round the clock production.

Does it seem worthwhile to sell our Haas mills, take the ~30% hit in depreciation, and go to something more expensive like the Okuma M560? I have no experience with any 5 axis rotary other than Haas. Are the Nikken trunnions better, or will they need be rebuilt every year too? Last thing I want to do is buy more expensive rotaries only to find out they don’t last any longer and cost even more to repair than the Haas.

Faulty Matsuura MC500V2 with Yaskawa Yasnac MX1 controller

Good day.

Please could someone help me with this problem ? —->

I have a Matsuura MC 500 V2 VMC with a Yasnac MX1 controller.
When I turn the servo power on the spindle moves upwards by about one inch and the servo power shuts off. I then get an ERROR 343 SERVO ERROR (Z). It does this every time I turn on servo power. I have to bring the spindle down again by turning off the power and rotating the ballscrew manually.

Thanks in advance


K&T Modu Line Retrofit Baton Rouge

So this is my first post on this forum! My father and I own a small CNC machine shop in Louisiana. A few years ago we bought a 5-axis 1988 Modu Line with a Gemini D-17 controller with 84”X84”X30” of travel. We have been able to jog the machine in all directions so the servos are working(they are equipped with resolvers). I would like to figure out which controller is the best within a reasonable price range: Centroid, Mach3, Fanuc, Fagor, Siemans? Does anyone know of a good company that does retrofits down here? Also we really just want to get the machine running so we wouldn’t need all the super sexy features just basic ones! Any guidance would help.

Mits Meldas on Mori TV-400

Hello All,

I recently purchase a Mori TV-400. Basically everything was fine on the initially power up homing on all axis and everything, but I messed up by manually actuating the tool changer arm trying to get familiar with functions of panel. I am not nearly as saavy with troubleshooting the Mits like I am the Fanucs. Right now the tool changer arm is hanging down and the z axis is in an interlock state and wont jog/home. The tool changer arm wont home either until the z is satisfied I believe. Can you tell me what parameters will temporarily release the interlocks? I tried Y1C2 param from reading on practical machinist, but it only unlocked the Z+ direction.



Fanuc AC Servo Interchange: 6058-H323

My amp (6058-H323) went out in my Hardinge 42. Sent it in for repair and its NOT repairable. Service center wants to charge me $6400 for a remaned 6058-H334. I am finding drives on the bay much cheaper. Just need to know what amps will interchange with 6058-H323. And if I do find an interchange will I need the top board bc I have already gotten a remaned top board, but it was for my H323.