Has anyone spent any time looking exactly what it would take to get Mach4 working with Crossfire tables? FireControl is making me really regret upgrading my original Crossfire with the THC and new controller. Even the original Crossfire didn’t work with Mach3 out of the box and needed to have a plugin/config installed in Mach3.
the mainboard is proprietary to Langmuir so it only works with firecontrol.
langmuir only created a plugin for mach3. I know i read somewhere on here that mach4 wouldn’t work for one reason or another.
Yeah, I’ve read that as well, but never the exact breakdown of why it’s not possible. Seems like Langmuir is trying lock their customers into a proprietary system to potentially take advantage of them. It’s very John Deer of them.
firecontrol works fine for 99% of the users.
What issues do you have with fire control?
I have a philosophical issue with closed proprietary systems. I just don’t trust companies who do that.
My other issue is it seems to be poorly written. I’ve been battling grounding issues on my machine. When it crops up FireControl locks up and runs one my axis into the end of the lead screw. It seems like that should of been fixed a long time ago. I’d put money down that Mach4 probably handles that better.
My final reason is the ridiculous hardware requirements. The laptop running my machine is an i5 with 8GB of RAM and a Nvidia Quadro discrete graphics card and yet I have to go find the ‘compatibility’ version? It meets all the published specs (including the OpenGL requirement). Not being able to run on hardware like that without a ‘compatibility’ version is a huge red flag for me.
I understand completely.
Well I use the older version of fire control because I have seen so many issues with the newer.
The only band-aid I have seen that is remotely doable is to use a ground isolating plug on your computer or run on the laptop battery.
We decided to create our own Cut software and move away from Mach3 when support for it slowed down - we wanted to make sure bug fixes and feature requests were added in a timely manner. Additionally, Mach4 was pretty poorly received by the community compared to Mach3 at the time.
On the other hand, we continue to use & recommend 3rd party CAD/CAM software because they are industry standard, supported, and reliable. Many of our users have other machines that also require software such as Fusion360 or SheetCAM, so we wanted to keep the software workflow as ubiquitous as possible; we even have a guide on making your own FireControl-compatible post-processor for any CAM program of your choosing.
We fully believe in your right to modify your machine however you see fit. Mach-compatible Motion Control Boards are quite available, you just need to find one with the same pin quick-connectors as the Main Wiring Harness in the Electronics Enclosure. We would not be able to provide support for any such modifications, but we’re enthusiastic about your ability to do so!
I found some old 1/8"x2" EPDM rubber tape that I put between the control box and the frame yesterday. The USB cable already has an isolator for it. That will hopefully solve the grounding issue once and for all. It stopped my X axis from crashing into the end of the lead screw anyway. I ordered the limit switched so using an old version of FireControl isn’t going to be possible for me anymore so I need keep trying things.
If you reach out to us via our technical support ticketing system, we’ll be happy to help with this! @langmuir-aksel has a knack for resolving grounding issues.
EDIT: I see you actually already have a ticket open, Aksel will get back to you about this shortly!
You can also get a ground loop through your breaker box to ground prong on the charger. It can cause all sorts of trouble.