Using FireControl without hooking it up to the table

I for one, and I’m sure there are others, would like to be able to load code and do a dry run without having to go to my shop and hook up the plasma table each time. perhaps the next update could allow for this?

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Having used my table for a while, I can’t think of the benefit of doing a dry run without being hooked up to it. You can simulate in fusion and Sheetcam I believe. I only have used the dry run feature to ensure my outline fit the material or to verify things are running smoothly (motors and bearings and screws) prior to a big cut.

I have not see a program run differently than how I programmed it.

What are you trying to do?

I’m not sure what Langmuirs reason is for locking us out of firecontrol without a table connection though. I wanted to be able to poke around prior to my table getting here, but after using it, I can’t think of what I would do with it without the table connection.

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well right off th top of my head, being able to see nesting/patterning might be nice. Also, sometimes i have made Gcode files with the same or similar names in different files( i know my fault totally) and would like to see them in Fire Control to see which is which. Maybe I can accomplish this in Fusion, not sure.

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go to and you should be able to load your file there to view which one it is and run a simulation.

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Ah, so you’re using firecontrol to nest. All I’ve done with it is the manual nest. It only shows you one copy of your part at a time, so you wouldn’t be able to visualize your nesting and patterns anyway. Manual nest just works off the total OD of your design and results in wasted material depending on what your cutting.

It would be easier for you to nest it prior to firecontrol.

The ncviewer tool is perfect for the other issue though.

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Actually I just tried out the patterning on my machine. It’s pretty neat and shows you more than one part. The spacing still looks a little further away than I’d like though.

I can. How about those who order a machine and have two months or so to wait for it? That’s a great opportunity to get our PC setup put together and start getting comfortable with the toolchain.

Honestly, since there IS always (for now) going to be a long wait for machine delivery after ordering one, offering the ability to do dry runs should be a customer service epiphany on Langmuir’s part in my opinion. I would think they could still “lock out” a generic download from being able to communicate with a DIY table or something to preserve intellectual property rights while allowing free exporation of the software. I know this tweak would likely not be trivial, but I would assume the guys creating the software would have the skill to do it.

Just $.02

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Yeah, poking around and seeing how it works as well as patterning makes total sense and would be helpful to do on your couch instead of in the shop. RSS

But just doing a dry run with it really doesn’t tell you anything. If there is an error in your code you’ll see it in the CAM process. You can simulate from there. I was just replying to this regaling having a table already, and want to dry run without be connected to it.

I would imagine, Langmuir could ship a dongle or charge extra for one that allows the software to work without the table connection. I’ve seen that with other software/machine bundles.

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Ooh, a dongle is an idea there.
They could produce mass USB dongles for relatively dirt cheap I would think and send them out to new orders to give them something to be tangible with for a meantime thing.
Heck, they could even ask we return them once the order is all received to save a little $$.
Anyways, I can see not needing it once you have a machine going. This feature would be the most useful for new waiters. If the months-long wait time was eliminated, then it’s moot. But until that time, it seems like the dongle thing might be a nice customer service touch.

Well, the wait is on for me now as well… Was wondering if there was any developments here… When I bought the XL table I was able to poke/play around with software for a while before receiving shipment… I think it was very beneficial, at least for me…

I will tell you the FireControl software is so easy to use you really do not need any practice…
it is your design software and post processing software you need to work on…
I was a total noob when I ordered my table…and I found the hardest thing was the design and playing in the post processor to get the cuts all good.

FireControl is easy…load program…press run…


one thing to mention about firecontrol…
like i said it is easy to use…the harder part is making sure you follow the instructions when hooking up the plasma to the control box so firecontrol properly sees the plasma.

Hey, it’s cool that you don’t see a use for it but I run a laser shop and just got the machine and I run lightburn all the time without it being hooked up to my laser. Pretty much all day every day, I layout or check for weirdness, save the files to a share drive, then go to the machine and cut. It makes sense for lightburn but maybe less so with firecontrol since you need other software first but because it is in fact part of the tool chain, it would be nice to be able to verify that nothing strange is going on when you import it.

I get that someone made the decision to lock out people not connected to the machine but just like you don’t see the point in wanting the ability, I don’t see the point in not having it. Literally just this morning I was trying out SheetCam (I usually use fusion 360), created a file that I thought would work and tried to load it into FireControl but it was the wrong type of file. I had to go to the shop to find that out.

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Welcome to the Forum!

The decision to lock the FireControl UI when not connected to the machine was a decision made with safety in mind; we want it to be absolutely clear whether the user does or does not have control of the machine.

It also serves to immediately inform the user of connection issues, which has has been instrumental for troubleshooting. For instance, we’ve had users notice the FireControl UI locking every time their air compressor activates; this indicates that EMI from the compressor is affecting the CrossFire’s Motion Control Board, which can lead to damage if left unremedied. Without a clear indication of disconnection, it would be quite difficult to narrow that down.


Just on that second note, lightburn also does tell you if you lose connection actually just opens up an error message. It’s not a mutually exclusive thing. Happened to me when I first set up my laser cutters.

I get that you’re not gonna change it and aren’t open to the idea of doing so. That’s fine.

We’re always open to suggestions and feedback!

The reason we don’t use an error message instead is that the connection can pick back up pretty quickly.

If the error message disappeared when the connection returned, the user would likely not have time to read or get a screenshot of the error, so they wouldn’t know what the error was.

If the error message stayed when connection returned, it would obstruct the UI; as the connection can drop and return while the machine is running in certain conditions, we feel obstructing the UI in any way presents safety concerns.