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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peroni View Post
    There is no hand wheel for the Z, not even with electronic hand wheels option. In 2 axis mode you jog the head up and down, think you can go from .1 to 150ipm in jog mod to get close then use the quill to set depth. The Z motor and quill scale work together and display as one Z position. In 3 axis mode you can jog the head around and use the quill to set your tool heights. Then retract/lock the quill and go. If you had a demo this should have been demonstrated. Talk with your sales rep about this, TRAK might even have some videos on youtube that will explain it.

    Forget the glass scales and call up Newall. Give them your X and Y travel numbers and get their linear encoder kits with ProtoTrak connections. Light years better than a plain glass scale and cost was only $200 more that what I was quoted for glass scales on my machine. Came with the right connectors and was a simple plug and play deal.
    Yes - the demo pretty much showed me what you explained for the Z axis. For some reason I had it in my head that there was also a manual handwheel for the Z axis. I am going to go with the electronic handwheels.

    For the Newall, did you only do x and Y or did you also do anything for the Z axis? The Prototrak only shows an x and Y option, so at this point I don't know what they do for the Z axis - wonder if they only use the servo motor encoder for that or if there is a scale. I know the machine comes standard with the quill glass scale.

    Lots of little details that can be tough to know about and your feedback and comments are greatly appreciated. The more I know and understand about this unit the happier I will be with the purchase...........

  2. #22
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    I have a DPMSX5 and love it, though I am not using it commercially. Get the electronic handwheels. If you are going to use coolant I would also highly recommend the table enclosure along with the splash shield (or even instead of). Cuts down the mess enormously

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradhe View Post
    I have a DPMSX5 and love it, though I am not using it commercially. Get the electronic handwheels. If you are going to use coolant I would also highly recommend the table enclosure along with the splash shield (or even instead of). Cuts down the mess enormously
    Yes - getting the electronic handwheels and the table enclosure and splash shield.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by markz528 View Post
    For the Newall, did you only do x and Y or did you also do anything for the Z axis? The Prototrak only shows an x and Y option, so at this point I don't know what they do for the Z axis - wonder if they only use the servo motor encoder for that or if there is a scale. I know the machine comes standard with the quill glass scale.
    The Z uses an encoder on the motor and quill has a glass scale. My machine had the old Trav-A-Dial encoders on X,Y and quill so I used the Newall on the quill as well. Looking back wish I just got a scale from SWI. The Newall part was a grand and while it works perfect, the mounting bracket system isn't that great and I'll be making a better replacement. Could of had a scale from SWI for $800 and been done. As far as I know there is no provision to bypass the Z motor encoder readings for a scale or linear encoder.

  5. #25
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    Might be too late in reply, but I would strongly recommend and consider a Centroid controlled Atrump bed mill over the Prototrak. Controller isn't as flashy, but more powerful and real CNC controller like. Also has the plug and play option for a true love 4th.

    Next step would be an open machine with a tool changer, maybe something Milltronics. Although some of those get into small VMC price range. The manual quilled, 3/4 axis bed mill is perfect for job shop / prototype work.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by zkling View Post
    Might be too late in reply, but I would strongly recommend and consider a Centroid controlled Atrump bed mill over the Prototrak. Controller isn't as flashy, but more powerful and real CNC controller like. Also has the plug and play option for a true love 4th.

    Next step would be an open machine with a tool changer, maybe something Milltronics. Although some of those get into small VMC price range. The manual quilled, 3/4 axis bed mill is perfect for job shop / prototype work.
    Well I have not pulled the trigger yet - was hopping to this week. I briefly looked at the Atrump but am looking at it closer after your post. There are some things I don't like about it over the Prototrak (less x and z travel, no scale option, etc.). But it does have some stuff that is very attractive that the Prototrak does not have. I may look at one this week.

    What are other's opinions about Atrump - decent machine? Is the encoder feedback with auto backlash compensation adequate? As a first CNC will I be satisfied with it? The price is attractive.

  7. #27
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    Atrumps come in a bunch of sizes. I rather like mine (13 year old machine - they've changed a little I'm sure.)

  8. #28
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    Centroid used to sell machines with their name on them, were they Atrump?

    Dynapath has some nice bed mills. Don;t know about your height restriction, but I'm sure you could get a true 4th axis, maybe 5th too. Dynapath customer support is excellent. DynaPath

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  10. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by zkling View Post
    Might be too late in reply, but I would strongly recommend and consider a Centroid controlled Atrump bed mill over the Prototrak. Controller isn't as flashy, but more powerful and real CNC controller like. Also has the plug and play option for a true love 4th.

    Next step would be an open machine with a tool changer, maybe something Milltronics. Although some of those get into small VMC price range. The manual quilled, 3/4 axis bed mill is perfect for job shop / prototype work.
    Maybe the newer control was better than what we had here, M15 IIRC? I disliked the Centroid control, clunky and absolutely no customer support from them! Maybe I'm spoiled by Haas customer support, Centroid would not even return a phone call????

    I would definitely buy a Prototrak again, we are currently looking for a replacement for our manual mill, it will be a Trak mill!

    Kevin

  11. #30
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    New centroid control is the M400, what limited support I have needed from them, has been great.

    I was strongly considering a Prototrak due to previous experience with the control in both 2 and 3 axis until I stumbled into the centroid controlled Atrump. If you are used to a true VMC it is not, but still extremely powerful for prototypes and job shop tasks.

    I'd rank the controls as the Prototrak and similar having a mostly DRO feel to them, then the Centroid, Milltronics, Hurco / Mits windows based, Haas, Fanuc. The later being advanced / intimidating controls especially for at the machine programming. With the Centroid, about the only G code you need to know is work offsets G5x and maybe a method to call up tool heights. If you do, great, but for the conversational 100% of what you used to do on a manual mill, not needed.

  12. #31
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    Well I am going to look at the Atrump tomorrow. Bringing my checkbook with me so I should own either an Atrump or Prototrak by the end of the day tomorrow - if all goes well.

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  14. #32
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    So today I looked at the the Atrump (A1-3T the small one).

    I thought the Prototrak hardware looked better than the Atrump - more refined, but not sure there is a difference in actual functionality. Also Atrump has no scale option and different electronic handwheel philosophy (but both philosophies are ok in my book).

    The Atrump software is definitely not as flashy as the Prototrak. However, I think I might like it better because it seems more logical for my engineering mind. I love the larger screen and the keypad - to me a real keypad is a big deal.

    However, the biggest difference is that for the same money as the Prototrak, the Atrump has a digitizer and a touch off post.

    So it became a no brainer for me. I bought the Atrump with the digitizer and tool touch off post for the same money I would of paid for a Prototrak without those features.

    Thanks for all the help!

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  16. #33
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    I have an older proto Trak DPM bed mill with the AGE 3 control. Post up some pictures of what you got at some point I would like to add another machine. I will probably always keep the trak because it is handy and I am used to running it. I have been thinking of getting a Haas mini mill or their tool room mill. I don't have the power available at my shop to run a big spindle. I do a lot of things on a CNC router and the balance on thee bed mill.


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