Plunging bit too far and breaking off -

Running a job that has worked in the past with no issue, and then would run to the 40% mark, freeze the PC, or run to 80% and freeze Then it runs fine.

It is a long job - takes about an hour.

Today the first time it ran it stopped again at 44%. I reset everything and restarted the job. It got to about 50% when the system just drove the bit deep in a plunge - where it should not have been changing depth, and then moved, breaking the bit.

I am finding just too many problems with the easel software - I don’t get why it decided to plunge the bit. this was a part of the program where it just is clearing out an area and was not due to drop depth again until about 62% into the program. Cut speed if 28ipm, 9imp plunge rate, and the cut depth is .028. The plunge the broke the bit was .2" deeper than the depth of the last cutting pass.

The PC is a Win7Pro 64 bit system, AMD-e45 with 4GB of ram and 250GB of storage. The only thing it does is run the X-Carve,

I have run ground wires from the machine, the controller and the table to a full earth ground to dissipate any static charges. The spindle is on a separate circuit.

I have now cut through over $40 of material and now add in a $14 Kodiak carbide 1/8" two flute bit. Let alone the hours of time.

Suggestions? Or do I just buckle down and buy V-Carve?

It is very unlikely an Easel issue. Check to make sure your power saving settings aren’t putting the usb ports to sleep, you aren’t losing connection, etc.

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second this.

Running Easel driver 0.3.2

Robert - for most of the work that I am doing with this machine - an hour is a long job. I use a completely different system for more complex work. This system is meant to do the flat 2D simple stuff. Yes, I know that there are users that are doing intricate stuff, but I am doing bone simple text and flat designs.

I purchased the X-Carve because it was supposed to be simple - and that I did not have to use another software package - like UGCS to use the machine. I know that I can do that - and will - but really - should I have to?

For everyone that suggested the power settings - that was down when I first set up the system, because I know the power saver setting that put screens and other parts of the computer asleep will stop the machine. That includes the USB ports. And yes, I went back and inspected the settings yesterday to make sure that for some reason they had not been reset. Nope - all still deactivated.

I have run programs that too much longer than the 1 hour mark with this exact setup - without issues. What is frustrating is that there are several faults showing - all which could come from several potential failure points:

  1. The local WiFi router burps and throws the program.
  2. The ISP burps and throws the program.
  3. The Amazon Cloudfront service that Inventables uses to store project data files burps when sending or receiving data that the program needs to process - and that throws the program.
  4. The AWS instance that Inventalbles runs their Easel service on burps and that throws the program.
  5. There is a transient spike (static charge, variation in the voltage on the router, line voltage variation) that throws the PC.

Breaking the problem into three different failure paths:

I hooked the computer via CAT6 into the network - eliminated the WiFi.

Can’t replace the ISP. But the error logs on our servers indicate we did not have any TX-RX faults on the days where I was having the problem.

I have noticed that the X-Carve and the X-Controller are both susceptible to static discharges. That was happening when I was using vacuum and when I was not. I put a direct to earth ground in place to shunt any static ground and not through the electronics.

Replaced the USB cable supplied with the X-Controller with a shorter on with the ferrite lugs on both ends.

Separated the router cord from the control cable bundles in the cable chain, running the router cable external to the cable chain.

So, eliminated as best I can Items 1,2 and 5. So what next?

Bob, Mechanical perhaps. I will be checking the z-stepper circuit as you suggested. The end mill snapping off is mechanical, but it is only doing it when the system drives the bit 3X - 6X deeper than the moment before - where there is not a GCode instruction to do so (yes guys - I extracted the G-Code and looked at it - there were no Z instructions in the code sections when the system drove the bit. That does not let EASEL off the hook, because I am not sure what Easel is doing in post process - when it is feeding the instructions to the XCarve.

Guys, please understand that I appreciate your comments - all good stuff. However, please also understand that I am looking at three different kinds of failures happening all on the same project.

  1. PC Lockup partway through the job
  2. Premature end of the job (Easel says the job is done, but it isn’t)
  3. The Z axis operating and driving the bit negative - (down) while the X-Y are operating.

I believe that the #2 failure is static discharge - and have added the ground circuits. That problem has not reappeared.

I can’t tell if #1 or #3 are related or not. Using another piece of software may help - but if it does - then why go back to using Easel?

More testing in the morning. Again, thanks for playing.

There is a setting that you may or may not have checked, if you have please disregard. Windows has a setting that allows it to shut down USB ports to save power, the default is to allow it.

It is under the device manager/USB root hub.