Z axis question

So I am working on cutting a piece after cutting sucessfully all day long.

I zero my axis and the program was chugging along when it lost the arc. It wasn’t piercing and was making a mess of things. In the process of trouble shooting I noticed my Z value was way off.

I sent it back to the XY zero and at the surface of the metal the Z axis shows a positive value of around 1". Is this normal? I’ve never paid attention on whether it kept track of the Z or if the IHS just sensed and it was all relative.

I rezeroed and it went along it’s merry way still making a mess of things until it lost the arc again. I sent it to time out at the XY zero and it was the same thing again. Like the z axis had no idea where it was at.


I would bet it got dirty and bound up, and the axis lost some steps. Happened to me a bunch.

Once you stop cutting through your material, everything blows back up and makes a terrible mess. Clean everything and check for tolerances in the eccentric bearings. Check your consumables also.

Finally, I’ve seen my torch just go up and up until it stops cutting. Turned out to be part of the ground interference from having the laptop plugged in while cutting. Check your THC live voltage against what your cutters book says it should be.

Thanks. The crummy cuts were definitely worn consumables. The table ran for almost 8 hours today. I replaced the consumables and it’s cutting great.

Still curious about the Z Axis. I do have every 10 drops or so have it going sssssuuuuppppeeeerrrr slow for the IHS drop. It’s probably about due for a cleaning.

The super slow drop is a documented issue I believe. But I would definitely clean everything. The mess from incomplete cuts is what gummed up my rails and z axis.

What cutter are you running?