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Old 09-16-2012, 05:55 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Stepper motor?

I don't know what to do anymore. I thought I had my problem fixed where my cuts weren't matching up. I went through and dimpled all the shafts so the set screws were locked in place. I've squared the gantry to the table several times. Today while cutting a wedding gift, the table made an awful sound and of course the cuts didn't match up. 24"x24" piece of metal wasted. I tried again, this time with no cut, taped a marker to the torch and let it draw the pic out. Again, bad noise and misaligned cuts. I ran the gantry up and down the table several times and got it to make the noise a couple more times. The motor stops turning completely but it continues to make noise. There is no slipping, binding, or trash in the rails. What could cause the gantry to stop but the motor to continue to spin internally? I swapped the X & Y motors and never got it to make the noise again. I ran out of shop time for today but I'll be going back tomorrow so I thought I'd see what uou guys had to say. Could a motor be going bad? What else should I do?
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Old 09-16-2012, 06:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
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With a stepper motor the "grinding" noise you are hearing is not grinding or internal slipping. It is the motor stalling and the noise is the motor continuing to attempt to advance the steps. It can be binding causing the motor to stall. It is possible to have a motor get weak or drag internally and have it stall. Something is causing the machine to exceed the working load of the stepper motor.
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Old 09-17-2012, 02:55 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I pulled the motors to swap the X & Y. When I had the motors off, I ran the gantry the full length of the table by hand. It ran smooth. The motors feel different when you spin them. The Y motor spins with a fluid movement whereas the X motor feels like a cold, bias ply swamper when you pull out on the road. Ok maybe not that bad but it feels nothing like the Y motor.
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Old 09-17-2012, 05:53 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Mine did that one day. It started making oval looking holes, lines weren't lining up and had a weird noise. I ran it up the track (via the motors) with my hand on the gantry and could feel a kind of dragging vibration besides the noise.

It felt like one of the motors wasn't spinning, so I left the x axis motors hooked up, but was going to drop them down one at a time by loosening the bolts so I could see if they were both spinning. The first one I dropped down, I moved the X axis and that motor wasn't spinning at all.

I thought the motor was bad since it was still turned on in the program, but I restarted the computer and it has worked fine ever since.

I would first check the plugs, then drop a motor down by loosening the 4 bolts that keeps it pressed to the track and see if it's spinning while the other motor is moving the gantry.

What your describing sounds exactly like a motor is not running which doesn't just spin freely as the other motor moves the gantry, it's like having a brake on that side of the machine...
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Old 09-17-2012, 06:05 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I have an older TM2 and it only has one motor on the gantry. I would like to upgrade to dual motors but right now I just need what I've got to work properly so I can make some money to pay for those upgrades. I've scrapped enough steel to pay for whatever is wrong, I just have to find out what it is.
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Old 09-17-2012, 10:02 AM   #6 (permalink)
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All the steppers I have worked with feel notchy when turned. That is the permanent magnet attempting to hold it in place. Maybe try plugging them in and power them up and turn the shaft by hand. Should be hard to turn them, if one is easier to turn it is the weaker one.
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Old 09-17-2012, 12:09 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skuzi View Post
I don't know what to do anymore. I thought I had my problem fixed where my cuts weren't matching up. I went through and dimpled all the shafts so the set screws were locked in place. I've squared the gantry to the table several times. Today while cutting a wedding gift, the table made an awful sound and of course the cuts didn't match up. 24"x24" piece of metal wasted. I tried again, this time with no cut, taped a marker to the torch and let it draw the pic out. Again, bad noise and misaligned cuts. I ran the gantry up and down the table several times and got it to make the noise a couple more times. The motor stops turning completely but it continues to make noise. There is no slipping, binding, or trash in the rails. What could cause the gantry to stop but the motor to continue to spin internally? I swapped the X & Y motors and never got it to make the noise again. I ran out of shop time for today but I'll be going back tomorrow so I thought I'd see what uou guys had to say. Could a motor be going bad? What else should I do?
Thanx.

TM2 4x10
When the motor attempts to move but is reached with enough physical resistance that it can not overcome, the motor will slip internally. This does not damage the motor, and there may be nothing wrong with the motor. This usually occurs at a higher feedrate rapid travel move, because the faster the motors move there is more of a chance that less resistance will cause the motor to stall.

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Originally Posted by Skuzi View Post
I pulled the motors to swap the X & Y. When I had the motors off, I ran the gantry the full length of the table by hand. It ran smooth. The motors feel different when you spin them. The Y motor spins with a fluid movement whereas the X motor feels like a cold, bias ply swamper when you pull out on the road. Ok maybe not that bad but it feels nothing like the Y motor.
If you suspect that there is a problem with the motor, you can try swapping them between axis and see if the problem follows the motor, or that swapping them fixes the problem. I would say that they should feel the same. Light resistance with even clicks or "steps" as the motor is turned. If it is very difficult to turn, or gets worse in some spots, that may indicate a bad stepper motor.

-Mike
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Old 09-17-2012, 02:25 PM   #8 (permalink)
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My TM2 did this occasionally during X axis "rapids" between cuts. I'm assuming the reason only the X axis did it, is because it requires more force to move the heavy gantry... as opposed to the lighter Y axis cassette.

What is your rapid travel rate set at? I think I had to get mine down to about 225ipm or something like that.. before I eliminated the stall.
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